Fri, May 24

Valley Academy agreement not on Mingus Union agenda - yet
Superintendent: Tech ed partnership likely discussed in September

COTTONWOOD – The highlight to Tuesday’s meeting of the Mingus Union High School District governing board is not an item on the agenda – but an item conspicuously left off the agenda.

Though all that was available at press time was a draft copy of the Aug. 22 meeting’s agenda, the recent Intergovernmental Agreement between Valley Academy of Career and Technical Education and its three partners – Camp Verde Unified, Sedona Oak Creek Unified and Mingus Union school districts – is not even a discussion item.

According to Mingus Union Superintendent Dr. Penny Hargrove, the absence of discussions, considerations and/or actions pertaining to the agreement should be no cause for concern.

“We are actively pursuing a negotiation of the IGA,” Dr. Hargrove said.

On its end, Valley Academy’s district governing board voted 4-to-0 to approve the agreement at its Aug. 4 meeting. Following the career and technical education program’s lead, Camp Verde Unified’s school board voted 5-to-0 on Aug. 8 to approve the agreement.

Though Mingus Union is not discussing nor voting on the IGA on Aug. 22, Dr. Hargrove said the agreement could be on the board’s September agenda.

“Probably at the soonest,” Dr. Hargrove said. “We’re going to fully vet the components of the IGA, so when it’s signed, it’s done with integrity.”

Compared to the previous agreement that Valley Academy agreed to in July, Dr. Hargrove said that the Aug. 4 agreement shows “a lot of positive steps.”

“It’s a collaborative effort to see all parties are content with the terms of the agreement,” Dr. Hargrove said.

Tuesday, the Mingus Union school board is expected to share solicited information pertaining to unification/consolidation efforts. According to Dr. Hargrove, the district is “committed to doing what is best for all of the community’s students.”

“The board is doing its due diligence,” Dr. Hargrove said.

Also Tuesday, the board could approve a $2 reduction of gate fees for students to attend athletic events.

If supported by the board, students would pay $3 to enter school sporting events, rather than the $5 they currently pay.

To Dr. Hargrove, the price decrease would be one way to “build back student pride in our school.”

 At 6 p.m. Tuesday, the Mingus Union High School District governing board will meet at the school’s library, located at 1801 E. Fir St. in Cottonwood. Call (928) 634-0580 for more information.

The district will post a copy of the agenda no less than 24 hours before the meeting.

For the most up-to-date agenda, visit

The district’s regularly-scheduled meetings are typically held at 6 p.m., unless otherwise noted.

-- Follow Bill Helm on Twitter @BillHelm42