Super Intendent's Corner

Howard CarlsonDr. Howard Carlson began his career in the state of Washington where he taught agriculture, science, and math courses at the middle school and high school levels. He earned his B.S. Degree from Washington State University and his Master’s degree from Heritage University. He completed his doctorate at Washington State University in 1997. 

As an administrator, Dr. Carlson has served at the building and central office levels; first becoming a superintendent in 1997. He has served as an assistant superintendent and superintendent in the states of Washington, Minnesota, and now Arizona. Dr. Carlson co-authored a book for new superintendents titled, “So Now You’re the Superintendent,” which was selected by the American Association of School Administrators to be jointly published with Corwin Press.

Dr. Carlson has been recognized as a state and national “Teacher of the Year,” “Administrator of the Year,” and was recently named Wickenburg's “Man of the Year." In 2011, he accepted an appointment by Governor Jan Brewer to serve on the state’s E-Learning Task Force.

Dr. Carlson has four children, all of which are school age and attend WUSD schools. His wife is also a certified teacher, and she currently teaches art and music (including band) at Festival Foothills Elementary School.

Dr. Carlson welcomes your comments and concerns.  You may e-mail him anytime or give him a call at (928) 668-5350.

Current Education Article
Stop Means Stop

By David Jacobson, Director of Transportation

When I came to Wickenburg, I was hoping I would not see the issue of vehicles passing stopped buses with their “stop” arms out because Wickenburg is a smaller community. I was so wrong; it is just as bad here as it is in the big city.

I’m not sure why people continue to run the stop signs. Distractions such as phone use, being in a hurry, and not knowing the stop sign was coming out are just some of the excuses I’ve heard over the years. Often times it’s, “We feel it will slow us down or make us late.” Many times, I end up sitting at the same stop light as a person who has failed to stop for the bus.  

As I was preparing to write this article, the news reported that in a twenty-four hour period, there were two separate instances in Texas of drivers hitting a student while the students were crossing the street after getting off the bus. A survey done by NASDPTS, the National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services, reports that an estimated thirteen million violations occur nationwide in a 180-day school year. One violation is too many because that is one chance of a student getting hit. I hope that during my career, neither I nor my staff will ever have to witness a student getting hit by a vehicle. 

When a bus is preparing to stop to pick up students, the bus driver turns on amber warning lights prior to the red lights and stop sign. If you see the amber warning lights, the stop arm is going to follow so be aware. The only exception would be if the road has a median, which physically divides the lanes; then only oncoming traffic is not required to stop.

Drivers, please be alert and aware when traveling around buses so that we can all get to our destinations safely. I will end with this final thought:

“It’s not just a stop sign it could be a child’s life."