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Saddle Mountain News

Saddle Mountain Unified School District always has something new going on. Visit this page often to get updates on the special things we are doing.

Congratulations to the Class of 2022

We are so proud of our newest class of graduates! The Tonopah Valley High School class of 2022 boasted a 98% graduation rate and received more than three million dollars in scholarships. Way to go!

New SMUSD Superintendent Selected by Board

Saddle Mountain Unified School District is pleased to announce that the governing board has selected its new school superintendent. Dr. Michael Winters will take over the position as of July 1, 2022. The board selected Dr. Winters from a large pool of excellent candidates. He will replace Dr. Paul Tighe who led the district for six years. Dr. Tighe has taken a position as the executive director for Arizona School Administrators.

Dr. Winters is a career Arizona educator with 23 years of experience. He started his career as a high school biology and chemistry teacher then taught middle school science, became an assistant principal, was a principal for seven years, and has spent the last eight years as the executive director for curriculum and instruction in the Madison School District in Phoenix. He holds a bachelors in secondary education biology from the University of Missouri, a master's in education administration from Grand Canyon University, and a doctorate in organizational leadership K–12 education from Grand Canyon University.

"I was drawn to the small family-like environment in the district. When you visit Saddle Mountain, you can feel that culture as soon as you walk through the door. It’s a challenging and exciting time to be a part of K–12 education and I hope to successfully navigate the challenges growth brings with it by continuing to build state-of-the-art learning environments and staffing those schools with talented, dedicated educators. Our fifth school opens this August, and we look forward to welcoming our newest group of staff, faculty, and students to the SMUSD family,” said Dr. Winters.

“We are very pleased that Dr. Winters accepted the superintendent position,” said SMUSD governing board president Dan Blackson. “He is highly qualified and will bring a wealth of talent and energy to the district. We are grateful for Dr. Tighe’s years of service and our whole school family will miss his caring ways. We wish him the best as he begins a new career as the executive director for the Arizona School Administrators.”

Our Newest School is Almost Ready!

Desert Sunset Elementary will open on August 4, 2022. Can't wait to see our newest school? Take a virtual tour!