Catalina Foothills parents see red
Proposed cuts spark calls for superintendent’s ouster

By Brian J. Pedersen
Arizona Daily Star
Tucson, Arizona Published: 04.25.2009

Fed up with what they call a lack of answers about proposed budget cuts to extracurricular activities, some parents in the Catalina Foothills School District have organized a movement to oust Superintendent Mary Kamerzell.

“I don’t think she knows what she’s doing,” parent Mary Ann Evanoski said. “She won’t answer our questions.”

Evanoski, whose 16-year-old son, Ethan, is a sophomore at Catalina Foothills High School, said she and two dozen other parents already have signed a petition they hope to present Tuesday at the district’s next governing board meeting.

“We’re hoping to get through to the other board members, who act like puppets around her,” Evanoski said. “I think, because she has a Ph.D., they look to her as this fancy, fancy person. We figure the more noise we make, something will happen.”

Kamerzell, who has been superintendent since 1996, earns $147,000 per year and is under contract through 2010. Because hers is an appointed position, any decision to terminate her would fall to the governing board.

Kamerzell was out of the office Friday and could not be reached for comment. Messages left for governing board members and other district officials were not returned.

At issue, Evanoski says, is a proposal to eliminate all district funding for sports and other activities such as band, cheerleading and chess.

The district allocated $424,000 in its 2008-09 budget for coaching stipends, club coordinators and transportation to and from events.

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