Horizon, Host: Ted Simons

March 20, 2007


Host: Matthew Whitaker

Environmental Day


  • Tuesday is Environmental Day at the Arizona Legislature. Sandy Bahr of the Sierra Club will discuss legislative action regarding the environment.
Guests:
  • Sandy Bahr - Grand Canyon Chapter, Sierra Club
  • Elvera Anselmo - Associate State Director, Community Outreach, A.A.R.P. Arizona
  • David Seid - Senior Programs, City of Glendale Parks and Recreation Department
Category: Environment

View Transcript
Matthew Whitaker:
Tonight on "Horizon," preservation and conservation are among the areas of focus at the State Capitol today as environmental groups and state lawmakers came together today to talk about legislation related to the environment. Plus, the benefits of walking as people over 50 are becoming more and more apparent with each step. And an update on an Arizona charter school and its goal to further students' academic careers. Those stories next on "Horizon." Good evening, I'm Matthew Whitaker, welcome to "Horizon." More than 20 conservation organizations from around Arizona, along with more than 60 individual volunteers were at the State Capitol today to learn more about the Arizona Legislature and Advocate for Environmental Protection. The event focused on finding solutions for Arizona's growing pains. Legislators and environmental leaders spoke to the group.

Sandy Bahr:
I want to welcome everyone today and thank you for coming to what I think is our ninth environmental day.

Kyrsten Sinema:
My goal today is to help you understand a little bit about what's happening this morning and throughout the day. How many have already made appointments with your Legislators at some point today? Okay. So those who don't have an appointment with your legislator, please take some time to drop by and introduce yourself to your legislator. It is sometimes hard to get meetings because they are very, very busy. But if you can get the time to introduce yourself and make that face-to-face contact, that's important. Because your legislator hopefully will remember your face and name, so that next week or later this week, when you contact your legislator by phone or e-mail to ask them to vote no or yes on a piece of legislation, or to consider problems or highlights of a bill, that they will recognize your name and remember that you have met. That makes a difference to legislators. A lot of people feel like, my legislator isn't responsive. If so, please move to central Phoenix, we'll welcome you. It's a great district. It's a great place to live, ask Sandy. But the truth is, no matter where you live, your legislator needs to hear from you and hear your opinions about environmental protection and justice.

Matthew Whitaker:
Here now with more on today's event at the capitol, and an update on environmental bills, is Sandy Bahr. Sandy, thank you for being here with us today.

Sandy Bahr:
It's a pleasure to be here.

Matthew Whitaker:
Today was environmental day at the capitol. Can you tell us more about that?

Sandy Bahr:
Yes. Actually we ended up with over 80 people who came, and we ended up with more than we expected and that was great. We focused on solutions to Arizona's growing pains. We're the fastest growing state in the country. And with that we have air quality problems, traffic congestion, and lots of natural areas and increasing energy demands. We came together with advocates and legislators to talk about some solutions, and to encourage legislators to look at some ideas that they may not have considered seriously in the past.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Now the legislature has moved on two bills in particular this week:
one dealing with solar energy and a bill that would allow schools to pick up renewable energy.
Can you tell us a little more about those two bills?

Sandy Bahr:
Sure. House bill 2496 is a bill that would actually allow schools to use the savings they have on their utilities, and those are called their operation and maintenance dollars, to invest in more energy efficiency and renewables for the school. They can take the dollars then and reinvest in the schools themselves. Right now, if they save, there's no incentive for them to save, it just means they're going to get less money. This is a really important bill and will promote efficiency and renewables in the schools. Another bill that would make it more difficult for homeowners associations to block the installation of solar energy, that has also passed out of the Arizona House, so that's House bill 2593. We're happy to see that both efficiency and renewables, especially solar, are on the table in the Legislature this session.

Matthew Whitaker:
And how do you believe those bills are being received thus far, at this stage in the process?

Sandy Bahr:
They've been received very well. I think the biggest issue we run into at the capitol is people asking, well, how much it is going to cost, and is this going to divert money from someplace else. It's hard to get legislators to start thinking about long term. Like, if you invest a dollar today, you are going to save three dollars tomorrow. They think in relatively short term periods. But I think it's getting better. It's nice on energy efficiency, and solar energy, there's a lot of bipartisan support - a lot of Republicans and Democrats coming together.

Matthew Whitaker:
Now, Representative Lucy Mason has a bill that would require a guaranteed water source. Can you tell us more about that bill and where it is in the legislative process?

Sandy Bahr:
The bill is awaiting final passage in the House. There were two bills, one coming through the Senate and one through the House, and they're identical bills. They want to substitute the Senate bill in the House. If it's substituted, then it'll move out of the House and go up to the governor. The bill has some positive aspects to it. It is important that we bring these adequacy requirements to rural Arizona, which in a lot of cases isn't even that rural anymore. Places like Sierra Vista, for example, this is just not rural anymore.

Matthew Whitaker:
Sure.

Sandy Bahr:
And you know, we're supportive of bringing more accountability and consumer protection, and really tying development to what water is available. One of the concerns we have about it is the fact that it requires a unanimous vote for the community to adopt it. And so that may limit where it's applied. I think Coconino County, for example, will likely use it.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Now you would like a bill that would prohibit drilling in contaminated areas. Can you tell us more about that, as well?

Sandy Bahr:
There is a bill that limits -- if there's a community -- well, really, there's an example. Payson has a lot of contaminated groundwater. It was contaminated by a dry cleaner up there. And they're doing remediation, cleanup of the groundwater. And what this bill would do would limit drilling wells in the area that would affect the remediation, the cleanup effort. And so it's a good bill, and there doesn't seem to be opposition for it to go up to the governor.

Matthew Whitaker:
There's a bill that would require major funding sources to be named on petitions when gathering signatures on a ballot. Can you elaborate or talk to us about how you feel about that particular measure, as well?

Sandy Bahr:
Sure. Well, that bill is part of a whole long list of bills that is aimed at making it more difficult for citizens to engage in the initiative process. And what we've said to legislators is you shouldn't be creating double standards, more impediments for people to put measures on the ballot. This is an important part of our constitution, is direct democracy, and you know, we fully support it. If there is a problem you want to address, let's sit down and talk about it, but don't just throw up all of these impediments and make it more difficult and more costly, and make it so only people with very deep pockets can engage in the initiative process. We are opposed to that bill and the others that are being moved through the legislature.

Matthew Whitaker:
And how is that particular message being received?

Sandy Bahr:
Well, it passed out of the House. It was a very close vote, passed with 32 votes. They need 31, so I would say a lot of people have concerns about it. We're hopeful that the Senate will like it even less.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Are there any bills in the works right now dealing with air quality?

Sandy Bahr:
Senate bill 1552 is a bill that deals a little bit with air quality. It's basically what the bill sponsor called the "shell of a bill." What happened to it in the Senate is they did an amendment in the natural resources and rural affairs committee, and they took out the significant provisions. Right now there are some little measures dealing with leaf blowers and no-burn days. What the plan is to try and get an amendment on it in a conference committee, and to include measures that would really improve air quality. In the Phoenix area we have serious problems with particulate pollution. And if we don't figure out a way to reduce those, there is a threat of a loss of federal highway dollars. But more importantly, it's just bad for us, particularly for children and the elderly.

Matthew Whitaker:
That's what I was going to ask you. Particulate pollution, can you explain a little more about specifically what that is?

Sandy Bahr:
Right. The particulate pollution we're talking about is from dust. So construction, agriculture, transportation, driving on the roads and kicking up the dust, all of that is contributing to it. And we are serious for what they call p.m.10, those are the larger particulates. And what happens is they, you know, can cause breathing difficulty, particularly in people who are sensitive. And we are one of only two areas in the country that -- where it's gotten so bad that we have to come up with what are called the five-percent plan. By the end of this year, we have to reduce our particulate pollution five percent per year for five years, until we meet a federal standard, which is a health-based standard. Well, our lungs aren't different in Arizona, it's a health-based standard and we have to meet it.

Matthew Whitaker:
Well on that note we'll have to stop. Thank you, Sandy Bahr, for joining us.

Sandy Bahr:
It's my pleasure, thank you.

Matthew Whitaker:
Thank you very much. Today marks the first day of spring and summer is just around the corner and we all want to look good in our summer clothes and feel fit and healthy. One way to take a step towards a healthy lifestyle is to start a walking program. The A.A.R.P. and the National Recreation and Parks Association have teamed up to promote the benefits of walking for people over 50 with a ten-week pilot walking program. We have more on that in a moment. First, here are tips on walking your way to good health.

Merry Jane Lucero:
Walking is becoming increasingly valued as one of the best forms of exercise for people of all ages. It promotes good health in many ways, increasing oxygen intake and circulation throughout the body. For weight loss, walking helps to burn stored fat. For a pound of body weight, you must burn 3,500 calories. Walking one mile burns up 100 calories. Most people naturally walk an average of just under three miles or between three and 4,000 steps every day. If you add one mile and walk four miles four times a week, you could burn 1,600 calories. Some things to remember: warm up. Lightly walk the first few minutes to get your circulation flowing and your calorie burning started. Stretch your major muscle groups, gently holding for at least 30 seconds. Go for distance over quickness. Think about a comfortable pace for yourself, rather than being a speed-walker. Head for the hills, stairs, bleachers or incline to alternate your routine. This can give you incline to alternate your routine. You don't have to take long, strenuous walks. Just start a steady routine. Walking strengthens your muscles. So, if you want you can gradually speed up as your fitness level improves.

Matthew Whitaker:
Here now with more on step up to better health and a ten-week waking program in Glendale are: Elvera Anselmo, the Associate State Director for Community Outreach for A.A.R.P. Arizona, and David Seid with the Senior Programs at the city of Glendale Parks and Recreation Department. It's a pleasure to have you here.

Elvera Anselmo:
Thank you.

David Seid:
Thank you.

Matthew Whitaker:
The A.A.R.P is launching a promotion for walking for people over 50. Can you tell us why?

Elvera Anselmo:
We are promoting walking because it's a way for people to become more physically active, especially if they have a sedentary lifestyle. Study after study has shown it's a way to decrease heart disease, stroke, lower high blood pressure, lower cholesterol, reduce stress. I mean, the benefits are extraordinary. And yet walking is easy, it doesn't cost very much, and you can do it whenever you want, wherever you want, you can do it by yourself or with other people. There's a lot of flexibility, so A.A.R.P. thinks walking is a great way to become active or remain active, so you can live as independently as possible as you age.

Matthew Whitaker:
What are the ways you're going to be promoting this agenda?

Elvera Anselmo:
We're working with the Glendale Adult Center to do a ten-week walking program. We're also going to Flagstaff in May. We are looking for partners so we can do this type of program throughout the state. For people who like to do things on their own, A.A.R.P. is really great. It has a number of virtual journeys at aarp.com. You can clock how many steps you took that day, you can start walking down route 66 or walking the Appalachian Trail, you can start walking down Route 66, and really see your progress and not only feel better, but know you're accomplishing things. So there are a lot of resources we have out there and we're hoping that they will become available for the type of programming we're doing with Glendale.

Matthew Whitaker:
David, what are some of the benefits of walking for people who can't launch into a regular aerobic or exercise regime? What are some of the benefits?

David Seid:
Walking is a great way to get into improving one's overall fitness level. You can walk around the neighborhood just to improve your steps and add more activity level to what you're currently doing. It's probably the least restrictive activity. You can do it on your own, any time, mornings, afternoons. It's just a great way to create a baseline and get your fitness level and goals going in the right direction.

Matthew Whitaker:
My notes tell me that, Elvera, people naturally walk 3 to 4,000 steps a day. What is an optimal daily walking distance?

Elvera Anselmo:
Well, optimal health is 10,000 steps a day, and to lose weight you need to walk about 12,000 steps. It sounds a lot, but in the end -- up to this point today I've walked 4,000. If I go home and have walked 30 or 45 minutes, I'll add another 6,000 steps to my day, and I will be able to make my goal. Just by adding steps, you start really making goals for yourself, setting goals a little higher and higher and, before you know it, you can do 10,000 steps.

Matthew Whitaker:
Now, David, stretching is a huge part of a regime like this. But in addition to some of the things we saw in the video, what are some good stretching tips?

David Seid:
The main goal in stretching is that you want to improve your range of motion. So due to limited activity you may have lost some range of motion, so you want to regain your function. Warm up before you do some of your stretches, and try to exceed some of the ranges of motion you might have. You can do a number of different things to improve your overall fitness.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Wonderful. Is this walking program a national campaign?

Elvera Anselmo:
This is a national campaign with the National Parks & Recreation Association. It is important. It's just not Arizona. We are going to every state and trying to get walking promotion programs going, because it makes sense.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Here in Arizona we're walking straight into the heat now. So what are some things that you can suggest to do in the hot weather that we have here?

Elvera Anselmo:
It's going to cause a few barriers, especially if you don't like getting up early or you don't want to walk late at night. We want you to go to the local community center, go to the local adult center. They have indoor facilities where you can walk. They might have exercise machines where you can do your treadmill and step machines. There's a lot of things. Go to a swap meet on the weekends and get your steps. You can take your grandchildren or your family members to the museums and sports arenas. Instead of just watching, walk around, get those steps in.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. And David, how is your organization collaborating with the A.A.R.P.?

David Seid:
We will be holding the actual kickoff Saturday April 7th at the Glendale Adult Center. That will be a way to get people more familiar with the adult center itself. And for a number of the programs that we have throughout the city of Glendale. Just last year we were recognized as one of the top ten walk able cities in America, through Prevention Magazine. That says a lot to what we've done, and still, we want to add more. We're adding amenities and bringing parks and open spaces and walking trails into the Parks & Rec Department. We look forward to seeing people out there improving their health through walking.

Matthew Whitaker:
You both seem very enthusiastic about this. It seems like a wonderful initiative. I mean you both are smiling constantly about this. One of the roles of your organization in this walking promotion specifically, can you give us some of the things you're doing on a day-to-day basis?

David Seid:
We're going to get folks aware of what walking opportunities there are out in the community. We can get some trail guides and get people out in the community some direction as to where they can participate in the walking. We're there to support them. And hopefully, as people graduate through the ten weeks, we can see them more involved in the fitness center and possibly our low-impact aerobic classes and maybe sign up for treadmill use or some of our exercise machines.

Elvera Anselmo:
David, I think the really important part, too, we're going to try to connect people with organized walkers and leaders, so they have someone to talk to, and so that they feel motivated. And also, connect them up with buddies, maybe people in their neighborhood they didn't know who wanted to walk. Once you have the support system, you're more able to continue walking.

Matthew Whitaker:
Thank you very much for being here, we wish you the best with this. Thank you for being on "Horizon."

Elvera Anselmo and David Seid:
Thank you.

Matthew Whitaker:
When it opened last fall, the Wildcat School in Tucson promised to be a new model for education, supported by the University of Arizona and free of local politics. The charter school aims to make each student a success story. Reporter Kimberly Craft has an update on how the school has kept its promise.

Teacher:
If they're the same quality, whose shirts are you going to buy?

Kimberly Craft:
You'll find all the tumult associated with any school in Tucson. But at the Wildcat School we see education with a twist and more than a few dangerous curves.


Livier Escalante:
I don't really know, but I'm thinking about being a roller coaster designer.

Kimberly Craft:
The Wildcat School has had its ups and downs. Enrollment lagged below expectations. Yet so far the school seems to deliver on its promises. Designed as an alternative to the traditional model, it caters to those families who may not have many or any college graduates in their ranks.

Kimberly Craft:
The curriculum has a strong focus on math and science delivered in classes of no more than 20 students. That alone enticed many to attend.

Livier Escalante:
Well in my other school I had many problems with girls and stuff and I heard this school was smaller and there wouldn't be so many problems so I decided to come over here for that.

Artie Sosa:
Because my old school, the classes were like oversized, like 40 in the class. So I just really didn't like -- like, if I needed help on something, they wouldn't really explain it well enough. Here they, like, work on us individually.

Kimberly Craft:
Students are achieving in the intimate setting, but they also appreciate the subtle changes.

Student:
I like the fact that we got lunch, because in the beginning of the year we had to bring our own lunch and now we have a lunch system.

Kimberly Craft:
The charter school will add at least a grade a year to reach full enrollment, and eventually serve kindergarten through twelfth grade. Ron Mar, the University of Arizona Dean of the College of Education worries about achieving that goal with such a crowded marketplace.

Ronald Mar:
We have some fabulous public K through12 schools in this town, and God bless them, they're a challenge. They have now -- they're a marketplace challenge to charter schools. There are lots of other charter schools, so filling up the roster is a challenge.

Kimberly Craft:
Students who enroll in Wildcat School are automatically expected to go on to college. For some, that requires a cultural and behavioral change. Surprising that happens rapidly and there is a decrease in discipline problems in just one semester.

Kimberly Craft:
That pleases William Rosenberg, who sees fewer students in his office.

William Rosenburg:
They know what they have to do. They have to be ready to fit in, they have to not misbehave in class and do what they're supposed to do. Then they begin to see other potentials beyond what they've been exposed to.

Kimberly Craft:
The University of Arizona has helped design curriculum and provided professional development to ensure students' early success. The early challenge is to bring all students up to grade level and create a culture of academic achievement and learning. To accomplish that, each student receives a handheld device that interfaces with the school's computers and lessons have relevance to their lives. And while students have a goal of going to college they must also have a plan; that means involving the community, families and colleges.

Ronald Mar:
A lot of families, particularly families that come from poor neighborhoods, poor families, just believe there's no way they'll be able to pay for college, so they write it off. But there are lots of ways to pay the bills. So we're working on that piece, as well.

Kimberly Craft:
As an outcome of educating students, the Wildcat School serves as a testing ground for best educational principles. The College of Education have created the Arizona Center for Educational Success as a bridge for exporting lessons learned to other programs statewide.
Students take these lessons to heart and understand the influence of the University of Arizona. The program on Wildcat Wednesday involves a routine of exercises designed by the University of Arizona students in free enterprise, where young wildcats learn the importance of personal finance.

Artie Sosa:
It's showing us a lot about money, how people spend. Like, they start owing money to other people, and then it's showing us like how to save, like how the bank is working, and how we can get like a percentage when we save it in the bank.

Kimberly Craft:
Many students will take classes on the University of Arizona campus by their junior or senior year, placing them at an advantage on graduation.

Teacher:
When they graduate, they could be a sophomore at college. We're hoping to get them caught up and ready to go at that time, so that they totally know what to expect when they enter the university.

Kimberly Craft:
The school year includes one Saturday a month for field trips to the University of Arizona.

Teacher:
And the biochemical measurements we've made in space were exactly patched up on earth.

Kimberly Craft:
And students have frequent visits from university faculty.

Artie Sosa:
So we can, like, see what we want to become.

Matthew Whitaker:
Thanks for joining us on this Tuesday evening; I'm Matthew Whitaker, good night.

Walking for Health


  • The benefits of walking for people over 50 are becoming more and more apparent with every step. The AARP and the National Recreation and Park association have teamed up to promote a 10-week walking program.
Guests:
  • Sandy Bahr - Grand Canyon Chapter, Sierra Club
  • Elvera Anselmo - Associate State Director, Community Outreach, A.A.R.P. Arizona
  • David Seid - Senior Programs, City of Glendale Parks and Recreation Department
Category: Medical/Health

View Transcript
Matthew Whitaker:
Tonight on "Horizon," preservation and conservation are among the areas of focus at the State Capitol today as environmental groups and state lawmakers came together today to talk about legislation related to the environment. Plus, the benefits of walking as people over 50 are becoming more and more apparent with each step. And an update on an Arizona charter school and its goal to further students' academic careers. Those stories next on "Horizon." Good evening, I'm Matthew Whitaker, welcome to "Horizon." More than 20 conservation organizations from around Arizona, along with more than 60 individual volunteers were at the State Capitol today to learn more about the Arizona Legislature and Advocate for Environmental Protection. The event focused on finding solutions for Arizona's growing pains. Legislators and environmental leaders spoke to the group.

Sandy Bahr:
I want to welcome everyone today and thank you for coming to what I think is our ninth environmental day.

Kyrsten Sinema:
My goal today is to help you understand a little bit about what's happening this morning and throughout the day. How many have already made appointments with your Legislators at some point today? Okay. So those who don't have an appointment with your legislator, please take some time to drop by and introduce yourself to your legislator. It is sometimes hard to get meetings because they are very, very busy. But if you can get the time to introduce yourself and make that face-to-face contact, that's important. Because your legislator hopefully will remember your face and name, so that next week or later this week, when you contact your legislator by phone or e-mail to ask them to vote no or yes on a piece of legislation, or to consider problems or highlights of a bill, that they will recognize your name and remember that you have met. That makes a difference to legislators. A lot of people feel like, my legislator isn't responsive. If so, please move to central Phoenix, we'll welcome you. It's a great district. It's a great place to live, ask Sandy. But the truth is, no matter where you live, your legislator needs to hear from you and hear your opinions about environmental protection and justice.

Matthew Whitaker:
Here now with more on today's event at the capitol, and an update on environmental bills, is Sandy Bahr. Sandy, thank you for being here with us today.

Sandy Bahr:
It's a pleasure to be here.

Matthew Whitaker:
Today was environmental day at the capitol. Can you tell us more about that?

Sandy Bahr:
Yes. Actually we ended up with over 80 people who came, and we ended up with more than we expected and that was great. We focused on solutions to Arizona's growing pains. We're the fastest growing state in the country. And with that we have air quality problems, traffic congestion, and lots of natural areas and increasing energy demands. We came together with advocates and legislators to talk about some solutions, and to encourage legislators to look at some ideas that they may not have considered seriously in the past.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Now the legislature has moved on two bills in particular this week:
one dealing with solar energy and a bill that would allow schools to pick up renewable energy.
Can you tell us a little more about those two bills?

Sandy Bahr:
Sure. House bill 2496 is a bill that would actually allow schools to use the savings they have on their utilities, and those are called their operation and maintenance dollars, to invest in more energy efficiency and renewables for the school. They can take the dollars then and reinvest in the schools themselves. Right now, if they save, there's no incentive for them to save, it just means they're going to get less money. This is a really important bill and will promote efficiency and renewables in the schools. Another bill that would make it more difficult for homeowners associations to block the installation of solar energy, that has also passed out of the Arizona House, so that's House bill 2593. We're happy to see that both efficiency and renewables, especially solar, are on the table in the Legislature this session.

Matthew Whitaker:
And how do you believe those bills are being received thus far, at this stage in the process?

Sandy Bahr:
They've been received very well. I think the biggest issue we run into at the capitol is people asking, well, how much it is going to cost, and is this going to divert money from someplace else. It's hard to get legislators to start thinking about long term. Like, if you invest a dollar today, you are going to save three dollars tomorrow. They think in relatively short term periods. But I think it's getting better. It's nice on energy efficiency, and solar energy, there's a lot of bipartisan support - a lot of Republicans and Democrats coming together.

Matthew Whitaker:
Now, Representative Lucy Mason has a bill that would require a guaranteed water source. Can you tell us more about that bill and where it is in the legislative process?

Sandy Bahr:
The bill is awaiting final passage in the House. There were two bills, one coming through the Senate and one through the House, and they're identical bills. They want to substitute the Senate bill in the House. If it's substituted, then it'll move out of the House and go up to the governor. The bill has some positive aspects to it. It is important that we bring these adequacy requirements to rural Arizona, which in a lot of cases isn't even that rural anymore. Places like Sierra Vista, for example, this is just not rural anymore.

Matthew Whitaker:
Sure.

Sandy Bahr:
And you know, we're supportive of bringing more accountability and consumer protection, and really tying development to what water is available. One of the concerns we have about it is the fact that it requires a unanimous vote for the community to adopt it. And so that may limit where it's applied. I think Coconino County, for example, will likely use it.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Now you would like a bill that would prohibit drilling in contaminated areas. Can you tell us more about that, as well?

Sandy Bahr:
There is a bill that limits -- if there's a community -- well, really, there's an example. Payson has a lot of contaminated groundwater. It was contaminated by a dry cleaner up there. And they're doing remediation, cleanup of the groundwater. And what this bill would do would limit drilling wells in the area that would affect the remediation, the cleanup effort. And so it's a good bill, and there doesn't seem to be opposition for it to go up to the governor.

Matthew Whitaker:
There's a bill that would require major funding sources to be named on petitions when gathering signatures on a ballot. Can you elaborate or talk to us about how you feel about that particular measure, as well?

Sandy Bahr:
Sure. Well, that bill is part of a whole long list of bills that is aimed at making it more difficult for citizens to engage in the initiative process. And what we've said to legislators is you shouldn't be creating double standards, more impediments for people to put measures on the ballot. This is an important part of our constitution, is direct democracy, and you know, we fully support it. If there is a problem you want to address, let's sit down and talk about it, but don't just throw up all of these impediments and make it more difficult and more costly, and make it so only people with very deep pockets can engage in the initiative process. We are opposed to that bill and the others that are being moved through the legislature.

Matthew Whitaker:
And how is that particular message being received?

Sandy Bahr:
Well, it passed out of the House. It was a very close vote, passed with 32 votes. They need 31, so I would say a lot of people have concerns about it. We're hopeful that the Senate will like it even less.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Are there any bills in the works right now dealing with air quality?

Sandy Bahr:
Senate bill 1552 is a bill that deals a little bit with air quality. It's basically what the bill sponsor called the "shell of a bill." What happened to it in the Senate is they did an amendment in the natural resources and rural affairs committee, and they took out the significant provisions. Right now there are some little measures dealing with leaf blowers and no-burn days. What the plan is to try and get an amendment on it in a conference committee, and to include measures that would really improve air quality. In the Phoenix area we have serious problems with particulate pollution. And if we don't figure out a way to reduce those, there is a threat of a loss of federal highway dollars. But more importantly, it's just bad for us, particularly for children and the elderly.

Matthew Whitaker:
That's what I was going to ask you. Particulate pollution, can you explain a little more about specifically what that is?

Sandy Bahr:
Right. The particulate pollution we're talking about is from dust. So construction, agriculture, transportation, driving on the roads and kicking up the dust, all of that is contributing to it. And we are serious for what they call p.m.10, those are the larger particulates. And what happens is they, you know, can cause breathing difficulty, particularly in people who are sensitive. And we are one of only two areas in the country that -- where it's gotten so bad that we have to come up with what are called the five-percent plan. By the end of this year, we have to reduce our particulate pollution five percent per year for five years, until we meet a federal standard, which is a health-based standard. Well, our lungs aren't different in Arizona, it's a health-based standard and we have to meet it.

Matthew Whitaker:
Well on that note we'll have to stop. Thank you, Sandy Bahr, for joining us.

Sandy Bahr:
It's my pleasure, thank you.

Matthew Whitaker:
Thank you very much. Today marks the first day of spring and summer is just around the corner and we all want to look good in our summer clothes and feel fit and healthy. One way to take a step towards a healthy lifestyle is to start a walking program. The A.A.R.P. and the National Recreation and Parks Association have teamed up to promote the benefits of walking for people over 50 with a ten-week pilot walking program. We have more on that in a moment. First, here are tips on walking your way to good health.

Merry Jane Lucero:
Walking is becoming increasingly valued as one of the best forms of exercise for people of all ages. It promotes good health in many ways, increasing oxygen intake and circulation throughout the body. For weight loss, walking helps to burn stored fat. For a pound of body weight, you must burn 3,500 calories. Walking one mile burns up 100 calories. Most people naturally walk an average of just under three miles or between three and 4,000 steps every day. If you add one mile and walk four miles four times a week, you could burn 1,600 calories. Some things to remember: warm up. Lightly walk the first few minutes to get your circulation flowing and your calorie burning started. Stretch your major muscle groups, gently holding for at least 30 seconds. Go for distance over quickness. Think about a comfortable pace for yourself, rather than being a speed-walker. Head for the hills, stairs, bleachers or incline to alternate your routine. This can give you incline to alternate your routine. You don't have to take long, strenuous walks. Just start a steady routine. Walking strengthens your muscles. So, if you want you can gradually speed up as your fitness level improves.

Matthew Whitaker:
Here now with more on step up to better health and a ten-week waking program in Glendale are: Elvera Anselmo, the Associate State Director for Community Outreach for A.A.R.P. Arizona, and David Seid with the Senior Programs at the city of Glendale Parks and Recreation Department. It's a pleasure to have you here.

Elvera Anselmo:
Thank you.

David Seid:
Thank you.

Matthew Whitaker:
The A.A.R.P is launching a promotion for walking for people over 50. Can you tell us why?

Elvera Anselmo:
We are promoting walking because it's a way for people to become more physically active, especially if they have a sedentary lifestyle. Study after study has shown it's a way to decrease heart disease, stroke, lower high blood pressure, lower cholesterol, reduce stress. I mean, the benefits are extraordinary. And yet walking is easy, it doesn't cost very much, and you can do it whenever you want, wherever you want, you can do it by yourself or with other people. There's a lot of flexibility, so A.A.R.P. thinks walking is a great way to become active or remain active, so you can live as independently as possible as you age.

Matthew Whitaker:
What are the ways you're going to be promoting this agenda?

Elvera Anselmo:
We're working with the Glendale Adult Center to do a ten-week walking program. We're also going to Flagstaff in May. We are looking for partners so we can do this type of program throughout the state. For people who like to do things on their own, A.A.R.P. is really great. It has a number of virtual journeys at aarp.com. You can clock how many steps you took that day, you can start walking down route 66 or walking the Appalachian Trail, you can start walking down Route 66, and really see your progress and not only feel better, but know you're accomplishing things. So there are a lot of resources we have out there and we're hoping that they will become available for the type of programming we're doing with Glendale.

Matthew Whitaker:
David, what are some of the benefits of walking for people who can't launch into a regular aerobic or exercise regime? What are some of the benefits?

David Seid:
Walking is a great way to get into improving one's overall fitness level. You can walk around the neighborhood just to improve your steps and add more activity level to what you're currently doing. It's probably the least restrictive activity. You can do it on your own, any time, mornings, afternoons. It's just a great way to create a baseline and get your fitness level and goals going in the right direction.

Matthew Whitaker:
My notes tell me that, Elvera, people naturally walk 3 to 4,000 steps a day. What is an optimal daily walking distance?

Elvera Anselmo:
Well, optimal health is 10,000 steps a day, and to lose weight you need to walk about 12,000 steps. It sounds a lot, but in the end -- up to this point today I've walked 4,000. If I go home and have walked 30 or 45 minutes, I'll add another 6,000 steps to my day, and I will be able to make my goal. Just by adding steps, you start really making goals for yourself, setting goals a little higher and higher and, before you know it, you can do 10,000 steps.

Matthew Whitaker:
Now, David, stretching is a huge part of a regime like this. But in addition to some of the things we saw in the video, what are some good stretching tips?

David Seid:
The main goal in stretching is that you want to improve your range of motion. So due to limited activity you may have lost some range of motion, so you want to regain your function. Warm up before you do some of your stretches, and try to exceed some of the ranges of motion you might have. You can do a number of different things to improve your overall fitness.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Wonderful. Is this walking program a national campaign?

Elvera Anselmo:
This is a national campaign with the National Parks & Recreation Association. It is important. It's just not Arizona. We are going to every state and trying to get walking promotion programs going, because it makes sense.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Here in Arizona we're walking straight into the heat now. So what are some things that you can suggest to do in the hot weather that we have here?

Elvera Anselmo:
It's going to cause a few barriers, especially if you don't like getting up early or you don't want to walk late at night. We want you to go to the local community center, go to the local adult center. They have indoor facilities where you can walk. They might have exercise machines where you can do your treadmill and step machines. There's a lot of things. Go to a swap meet on the weekends and get your steps. You can take your grandchildren or your family members to the museums and sports arenas. Instead of just watching, walk around, get those steps in.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. And David, how is your organization collaborating with the A.A.R.P.?

David Seid:
We will be holding the actual kickoff Saturday April 7th at the Glendale Adult Center. That will be a way to get people more familiar with the adult center itself. And for a number of the programs that we have throughout the city of Glendale. Just last year we were recognized as one of the top ten walk able cities in America, through Prevention Magazine. That says a lot to what we've done, and still, we want to add more. We're adding amenities and bringing parks and open spaces and walking trails into the Parks & Rec Department. We look forward to seeing people out there improving their health through walking.

Matthew Whitaker:
You both seem very enthusiastic about this. It seems like a wonderful initiative. I mean you both are smiling constantly about this. One of the roles of your organization in this walking promotion specifically, can you give us some of the things you're doing on a day-to-day basis?

David Seid:
We're going to get folks aware of what walking opportunities there are out in the community. We can get some trail guides and get people out in the community some direction as to where they can participate in the walking. We're there to support them. And hopefully, as people graduate through the ten weeks, we can see them more involved in the fitness center and possibly our low-impact aerobic classes and maybe sign up for treadmill use or some of our exercise machines.

Elvera Anselmo:
David, I think the really important part, too, we're going to try to connect people with organized walkers and leaders, so they have someone to talk to, and so that they feel motivated. And also, connect them up with buddies, maybe people in their neighborhood they didn't know who wanted to walk. Once you have the support system, you're more able to continue walking.

Matthew Whitaker:
Thank you very much for being here, we wish you the best with this. Thank you for being on "Horizon."

Elvera Anselmo and David Seid:
Thank you.

Matthew Whitaker:
When it opened last fall, the Wildcat School in Tucson promised to be a new model for education, supported by the University of Arizona and free of local politics. The charter school aims to make each student a success story. Reporter Kimberly Craft has an update on how the school has kept its promise.

Teacher:
If they're the same quality, whose shirts are you going to buy?

Kimberly Craft:
You'll find all the tumult associated with any school in Tucson. But at the Wildcat School we see education with a twist and more than a few dangerous curves.


Livier Escalante:
I don't really know, but I'm thinking about being a roller coaster designer.

Kimberly Craft:
The Wildcat School has had its ups and downs. Enrollment lagged below expectations. Yet so far the school seems to deliver on its promises. Designed as an alternative to the traditional model, it caters to those families who may not have many or any college graduates in their ranks.

Kimberly Craft:
The curriculum has a strong focus on math and science delivered in classes of no more than 20 students. That alone enticed many to attend.

Livier Escalante:
Well in my other school I had many problems with girls and stuff and I heard this school was smaller and there wouldn't be so many problems so I decided to come over here for that.

Artie Sosa:
Because my old school, the classes were like oversized, like 40 in the class. So I just really didn't like -- like, if I needed help on something, they wouldn't really explain it well enough. Here they, like, work on us individually.

Kimberly Craft:
Students are achieving in the intimate setting, but they also appreciate the subtle changes.

Student:
I like the fact that we got lunch, because in the beginning of the year we had to bring our own lunch and now we have a lunch system.

Kimberly Craft:
The charter school will add at least a grade a year to reach full enrollment, and eventually serve kindergarten through twelfth grade. Ron Mar, the University of Arizona Dean of the College of Education worries about achieving that goal with such a crowded marketplace.

Ronald Mar:
We have some fabulous public K through12 schools in this town, and God bless them, they're a challenge. They have now -- they're a marketplace challenge to charter schools. There are lots of other charter schools, so filling up the roster is a challenge.

Kimberly Craft:
Students who enroll in Wildcat School are automatically expected to go on to college. For some, that requires a cultural and behavioral change. Surprising that happens rapidly and there is a decrease in discipline problems in just one semester.

Kimberly Craft:
That pleases William Rosenberg, who sees fewer students in his office.

William Rosenburg:
They know what they have to do. They have to be ready to fit in, they have to not misbehave in class and do what they're supposed to do. Then they begin to see other potentials beyond what they've been exposed to.

Kimberly Craft:
The University of Arizona has helped design curriculum and provided professional development to ensure students' early success. The early challenge is to bring all students up to grade level and create a culture of academic achievement and learning. To accomplish that, each student receives a handheld device that interfaces with the school's computers and lessons have relevance to their lives. And while students have a goal of going to college they must also have a plan; that means involving the community, families and colleges.

Ronald Mar:
A lot of families, particularly families that come from poor neighborhoods, poor families, just believe there's no way they'll be able to pay for college, so they write it off. But there are lots of ways to pay the bills. So we're working on that piece, as well.

Kimberly Craft:
As an outcome of educating students, the Wildcat School serves as a testing ground for best educational principles. The College of Education have created the Arizona Center for Educational Success as a bridge for exporting lessons learned to other programs statewide.
Students take these lessons to heart and understand the influence of the University of Arizona. The program on Wildcat Wednesday involves a routine of exercises designed by the University of Arizona students in free enterprise, where young wildcats learn the importance of personal finance.

Artie Sosa:
It's showing us a lot about money, how people spend. Like, they start owing money to other people, and then it's showing us like how to save, like how the bank is working, and how we can get like a percentage when we save it in the bank.

Kimberly Craft:
Many students will take classes on the University of Arizona campus by their junior or senior year, placing them at an advantage on graduation.

Teacher:
When they graduate, they could be a sophomore at college. We're hoping to get them caught up and ready to go at that time, so that they totally know what to expect when they enter the university.

Kimberly Craft:
The school year includes one Saturday a month for field trips to the University of Arizona.

Teacher:
And the biochemical measurements we've made in space were exactly patched up on earth.

Kimberly Craft:
And students have frequent visits from university faculty.

Artie Sosa:
So we can, like, see what we want to become.

Matthew Whitaker:
Thanks for joining us on this Tuesday evening; I'm Matthew Whitaker, good night.

Wildcat School


  • We have an update on an Arizona charter school and its goal to further studentsí academic careers.
Guests:
  • Sandy Bahr - Grand Canyon Chapter, Sierra Club
  • Elvera Anselmo - Associate State Director, Community Outreach, A.A.R.P. Arizona
  • David Seid - Senior Programs, City of Glendale Parks and Recreation Department
Category: Education

View Transcript
Matthew Whitaker:
Tonight on "Horizon," preservation and conservation are among the areas of focus at the State Capitol today as environmental groups and state lawmakers came together today to talk about legislation related to the environment. Plus, the benefits of walking as people over 50 are becoming more and more apparent with each step. And an update on an Arizona charter school and its goal to further students' academic careers. Those stories next on "Horizon." Good evening, I'm Matthew Whitaker, welcome to "Horizon." More than 20 conservation organizations from around Arizona, along with more than 60 individual volunteers were at the State Capitol today to learn more about the Arizona Legislature and Advocate for Environmental Protection. The event focused on finding solutions for Arizona's growing pains. Legislators and environmental leaders spoke to the group.

Sandy Bahr:
I want to welcome everyone today and thank you for coming to what I think is our ninth environmental day.

Kyrsten Sinema:
My goal today is to help you understand a little bit about what's happening this morning and throughout the day. How many have already made appointments with your Legislators at some point today? Okay. So those who don't have an appointment with your legislator, please take some time to drop by and introduce yourself to your legislator. It is sometimes hard to get meetings because they are very, very busy. But if you can get the time to introduce yourself and make that face-to-face contact, that's important. Because your legislator hopefully will remember your face and name, so that next week or later this week, when you contact your legislator by phone or e-mail to ask them to vote no or yes on a piece of legislation, or to consider problems or highlights of a bill, that they will recognize your name and remember that you have met. That makes a difference to legislators. A lot of people feel like, my legislator isn't responsive. If so, please move to central Phoenix, we'll welcome you. It's a great district. It's a great place to live, ask Sandy. But the truth is, no matter where you live, your legislator needs to hear from you and hear your opinions about environmental protection and justice.

Matthew Whitaker:
Here now with more on today's event at the capitol, and an update on environmental bills, is Sandy Bahr. Sandy, thank you for being here with us today.

Sandy Bahr:
It's a pleasure to be here.

Matthew Whitaker:
Today was environmental day at the capitol. Can you tell us more about that?

Sandy Bahr:
Yes. Actually we ended up with over 80 people who came, and we ended up with more than we expected and that was great. We focused on solutions to Arizona's growing pains. We're the fastest growing state in the country. And with that we have air quality problems, traffic congestion, and lots of natural areas and increasing energy demands. We came together with advocates and legislators to talk about some solutions, and to encourage legislators to look at some ideas that they may not have considered seriously in the past.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Now the legislature has moved on two bills in particular this week:
one dealing with solar energy and a bill that would allow schools to pick up renewable energy.
Can you tell us a little more about those two bills?

Sandy Bahr:
Sure. House bill 2496 is a bill that would actually allow schools to use the savings they have on their utilities, and those are called their operation and maintenance dollars, to invest in more energy efficiency and renewables for the school. They can take the dollars then and reinvest in the schools themselves. Right now, if they save, there's no incentive for them to save, it just means they're going to get less money. This is a really important bill and will promote efficiency and renewables in the schools. Another bill that would make it more difficult for homeowners associations to block the installation of solar energy, that has also passed out of the Arizona House, so that's House bill 2593. We're happy to see that both efficiency and renewables, especially solar, are on the table in the Legislature this session.

Matthew Whitaker:
And how do you believe those bills are being received thus far, at this stage in the process?

Sandy Bahr:
They've been received very well. I think the biggest issue we run into at the capitol is people asking, well, how much it is going to cost, and is this going to divert money from someplace else. It's hard to get legislators to start thinking about long term. Like, if you invest a dollar today, you are going to save three dollars tomorrow. They think in relatively short term periods. But I think it's getting better. It's nice on energy efficiency, and solar energy, there's a lot of bipartisan support - a lot of Republicans and Democrats coming together.

Matthew Whitaker:
Now, Representative Lucy Mason has a bill that would require a guaranteed water source. Can you tell us more about that bill and where it is in the legislative process?

Sandy Bahr:
The bill is awaiting final passage in the House. There were two bills, one coming through the Senate and one through the House, and they're identical bills. They want to substitute the Senate bill in the House. If it's substituted, then it'll move out of the House and go up to the governor. The bill has some positive aspects to it. It is important that we bring these adequacy requirements to rural Arizona, which in a lot of cases isn't even that rural anymore. Places like Sierra Vista, for example, this is just not rural anymore.

Matthew Whitaker:
Sure.

Sandy Bahr:
And you know, we're supportive of bringing more accountability and consumer protection, and really tying development to what water is available. One of the concerns we have about it is the fact that it requires a unanimous vote for the community to adopt it. And so that may limit where it's applied. I think Coconino County, for example, will likely use it.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Now you would like a bill that would prohibit drilling in contaminated areas. Can you tell us more about that, as well?

Sandy Bahr:
There is a bill that limits -- if there's a community -- well, really, there's an example. Payson has a lot of contaminated groundwater. It was contaminated by a dry cleaner up there. And they're doing remediation, cleanup of the groundwater. And what this bill would do would limit drilling wells in the area that would affect the remediation, the cleanup effort. And so it's a good bill, and there doesn't seem to be opposition for it to go up to the governor.

Matthew Whitaker:
There's a bill that would require major funding sources to be named on petitions when gathering signatures on a ballot. Can you elaborate or talk to us about how you feel about that particular measure, as well?

Sandy Bahr:
Sure. Well, that bill is part of a whole long list of bills that is aimed at making it more difficult for citizens to engage in the initiative process. And what we've said to legislators is you shouldn't be creating double standards, more impediments for people to put measures on the ballot. This is an important part of our constitution, is direct democracy, and you know, we fully support it. If there is a problem you want to address, let's sit down and talk about it, but don't just throw up all of these impediments and make it more difficult and more costly, and make it so only people with very deep pockets can engage in the initiative process. We are opposed to that bill and the others that are being moved through the legislature.

Matthew Whitaker:
And how is that particular message being received?

Sandy Bahr:
Well, it passed out of the House. It was a very close vote, passed with 32 votes. They need 31, so I would say a lot of people have concerns about it. We're hopeful that the Senate will like it even less.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Are there any bills in the works right now dealing with air quality?

Sandy Bahr:
Senate bill 1552 is a bill that deals a little bit with air quality. It's basically what the bill sponsor called the "shell of a bill." What happened to it in the Senate is they did an amendment in the natural resources and rural affairs committee, and they took out the significant provisions. Right now there are some little measures dealing with leaf blowers and no-burn days. What the plan is to try and get an amendment on it in a conference committee, and to include measures that would really improve air quality. In the Phoenix area we have serious problems with particulate pollution. And if we don't figure out a way to reduce those, there is a threat of a loss of federal highway dollars. But more importantly, it's just bad for us, particularly for children and the elderly.

Matthew Whitaker:
That's what I was going to ask you. Particulate pollution, can you explain a little more about specifically what that is?

Sandy Bahr:
Right. The particulate pollution we're talking about is from dust. So construction, agriculture, transportation, driving on the roads and kicking up the dust, all of that is contributing to it. And we are serious for what they call p.m.10, those are the larger particulates. And what happens is they, you know, can cause breathing difficulty, particularly in people who are sensitive. And we are one of only two areas in the country that -- where it's gotten so bad that we have to come up with what are called the five-percent plan. By the end of this year, we have to reduce our particulate pollution five percent per year for five years, until we meet a federal standard, which is a health-based standard. Well, our lungs aren't different in Arizona, it's a health-based standard and we have to meet it.

Matthew Whitaker:
Well on that note we'll have to stop. Thank you, Sandy Bahr, for joining us.

Sandy Bahr:
It's my pleasure, thank you.

Matthew Whitaker:
Thank you very much. Today marks the first day of spring and summer is just around the corner and we all want to look good in our summer clothes and feel fit and healthy. One way to take a step towards a healthy lifestyle is to start a walking program. The A.A.R.P. and the National Recreation and Parks Association have teamed up to promote the benefits of walking for people over 50 with a ten-week pilot walking program. We have more on that in a moment. First, here are tips on walking your way to good health.

Merry Jane Lucero:
Walking is becoming increasingly valued as one of the best forms of exercise for people of all ages. It promotes good health in many ways, increasing oxygen intake and circulation throughout the body. For weight loss, walking helps to burn stored fat. For a pound of body weight, you must burn 3,500 calories. Walking one mile burns up 100 calories. Most people naturally walk an average of just under three miles or between three and 4,000 steps every day. If you add one mile and walk four miles four times a week, you could burn 1,600 calories. Some things to remember: warm up. Lightly walk the first few minutes to get your circulation flowing and your calorie burning started. Stretch your major muscle groups, gently holding for at least 30 seconds. Go for distance over quickness. Think about a comfortable pace for yourself, rather than being a speed-walker. Head for the hills, stairs, bleachers or incline to alternate your routine. This can give you incline to alternate your routine. You don't have to take long, strenuous walks. Just start a steady routine. Walking strengthens your muscles. So, if you want you can gradually speed up as your fitness level improves.

Matthew Whitaker:
Here now with more on step up to better health and a ten-week waking program in Glendale are: Elvera Anselmo, the Associate State Director for Community Outreach for A.A.R.P. Arizona, and David Seid with the Senior Programs at the city of Glendale Parks and Recreation Department. It's a pleasure to have you here.

Elvera Anselmo:
Thank you.

David Seid:
Thank you.

Matthew Whitaker:
The A.A.R.P is launching a promotion for walking for people over 50. Can you tell us why?

Elvera Anselmo:
We are promoting walking because it's a way for people to become more physically active, especially if they have a sedentary lifestyle. Study after study has shown it's a way to decrease heart disease, stroke, lower high blood pressure, lower cholesterol, reduce stress. I mean, the benefits are extraordinary. And yet walking is easy, it doesn't cost very much, and you can do it whenever you want, wherever you want, you can do it by yourself or with other people. There's a lot of flexibility, so A.A.R.P. thinks walking is a great way to become active or remain active, so you can live as independently as possible as you age.

Matthew Whitaker:
What are the ways you're going to be promoting this agenda?

Elvera Anselmo:
We're working with the Glendale Adult Center to do a ten-week walking program. We're also going to Flagstaff in May. We are looking for partners so we can do this type of program throughout the state. For people who like to do things on their own, A.A.R.P. is really great. It has a number of virtual journeys at aarp.com. You can clock how many steps you took that day, you can start walking down route 66 or walking the Appalachian Trail, you can start walking down Route 66, and really see your progress and not only feel better, but know you're accomplishing things. So there are a lot of resources we have out there and we're hoping that they will become available for the type of programming we're doing with Glendale.

Matthew Whitaker:
David, what are some of the benefits of walking for people who can't launch into a regular aerobic or exercise regime? What are some of the benefits?

David Seid:
Walking is a great way to get into improving one's overall fitness level. You can walk around the neighborhood just to improve your steps and add more activity level to what you're currently doing. It's probably the least restrictive activity. You can do it on your own, any time, mornings, afternoons. It's just a great way to create a baseline and get your fitness level and goals going in the right direction.

Matthew Whitaker:
My notes tell me that, Elvera, people naturally walk 3 to 4,000 steps a day. What is an optimal daily walking distance?

Elvera Anselmo:
Well, optimal health is 10,000 steps a day, and to lose weight you need to walk about 12,000 steps. It sounds a lot, but in the end -- up to this point today I've walked 4,000. If I go home and have walked 30 or 45 minutes, I'll add another 6,000 steps to my day, and I will be able to make my goal. Just by adding steps, you start really making goals for yourself, setting goals a little higher and higher and, before you know it, you can do 10,000 steps.

Matthew Whitaker:
Now, David, stretching is a huge part of a regime like this. But in addition to some of the things we saw in the video, what are some good stretching tips?

David Seid:
The main goal in stretching is that you want to improve your range of motion. So due to limited activity you may have lost some range of motion, so you want to regain your function. Warm up before you do some of your stretches, and try to exceed some of the ranges of motion you might have. You can do a number of different things to improve your overall fitness.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Wonderful. Is this walking program a national campaign?

Elvera Anselmo:
This is a national campaign with the National Parks & Recreation Association. It is important. It's just not Arizona. We are going to every state and trying to get walking promotion programs going, because it makes sense.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. Here in Arizona we're walking straight into the heat now. So what are some things that you can suggest to do in the hot weather that we have here?

Elvera Anselmo:
It's going to cause a few barriers, especially if you don't like getting up early or you don't want to walk late at night. We want you to go to the local community center, go to the local adult center. They have indoor facilities where you can walk. They might have exercise machines where you can do your treadmill and step machines. There's a lot of things. Go to a swap meet on the weekends and get your steps. You can take your grandchildren or your family members to the museums and sports arenas. Instead of just watching, walk around, get those steps in.

Matthew Whitaker:
Okay. And David, how is your organization collaborating with the A.A.R.P.?

David Seid:
We will be holding the actual kickoff Saturday April 7th at the Glendale Adult Center. That will be a way to get people more familiar with the adult center itself. And for a number of the programs that we have throughout the city of Glendale. Just last year we were recognized as one of the top ten walk able cities in America, through Prevention Magazine. That says a lot to what we've done, and still, we want to add more. We're adding amenities and bringing parks and open spaces and walking trails into the Parks & Rec Department. We look forward to seeing people out there improving their health through walking.

Matthew Whitaker:
You both seem very enthusiastic about this. It seems like a wonderful initiative. I mean you both are smiling constantly about this. One of the roles of your organization in this walking promotion specifically, can you give us some of the things you're doing on a day-to-day basis?

David Seid:
We're going to get folks aware of what walking opportunities there are out in the community. We can get some trail guides and get people out in the community some direction as to where they can participate in the walking. We're there to support them. And hopefully, as people graduate through the ten weeks, we can see them more involved in the fitness center and possibly our low-impact aerobic classes and maybe sign up for treadmill use or some of our exercise machines.

Elvera Anselmo:
David, I think the really important part, too, we're going to try to connect people with organized walkers and leaders, so they have someone to talk to, and so that they feel motivated. And also, connect them up with buddies, maybe people in their neighborhood they didn't know who wanted to walk. Once you have the support system, you're more able to continue walking.

Matthew Whitaker:
Thank you very much for being here, we wish you the best with this. Thank you for being on "Horizon."

Elvera Anselmo and David Seid:
Thank you.

Matthew Whitaker:
When it opened last fall, the Wildcat School in Tucson promised to be a new model for education, supported by the University of Arizona and free of local politics. The charter school aims to make each student a success story. Reporter Kimberly Craft has an update on how the school has kept its promise.

Teacher:
If they're the same quality, whose shirts are you going to buy?

Kimberly Craft:
You'll find all the tumult associated with any school in Tucson. But at the Wildcat School we see education with a twist and more than a few dangerous curves.


Livier Escalante:
I don't really know, but I'm thinking about being a roller coaster designer.

Kimberly Craft:
The Wildcat School has had its ups and downs. Enrollment lagged below expectations. Yet so far the school seems to deliver on its promises. Designed as an alternative to the traditional model, it caters to those families who may not have many or any college graduates in their ranks.

Kimberly Craft:
The curriculum has a strong focus on math and science delivered in classes of no more than 20 students. That alone enticed many to attend.

Livier Escalante:
Well in my other school I had many problems with girls and stuff and I heard this school was smaller and there wouldn't be so many problems so I decided to come over here for that.

Artie Sosa:
Because my old school, the classes were like oversized, like 40 in the class. So I just really didn't like -- like, if I needed help on something, they wouldn't really explain it well enough. Here they, like, work on us individually.

Kimberly Craft:
Students are achieving in the intimate setting, but they also appreciate the subtle changes.

Student:
I like the fact that we got lunch, because in the beginning of the year we had to bring our own lunch and now we have a lunch system.

Kimberly Craft:
The charter school will add at least a grade a year to reach full enrollment, and eventually serve kindergarten through twelfth grade. Ron Mar, the University of Arizona Dean of the College of Education worries about achieving that goal with such a crowded marketplace.

Ronald Mar:
We have some fabulous public K through12 schools in this town, and God bless them, they're a challenge. They have now -- they're a marketplace challenge to charter schools. There are lots of other charter schools, so filling up the roster is a challenge.

Kimberly Craft:
Students who enroll in Wildcat School are automatically expected to go on to college. For some, that requires a cultural and behavioral change. Surprising that happens rapidly and there is a decrease in discipline problems in just one semester.

Kimberly Craft:
That pleases William Rosenberg, who sees fewer students in his office.

William Rosenburg:
They know what they have to do. They have to be ready to fit in, they have to not misbehave in class and do what they're supposed to do. Then they begin to see other potentials beyond what they've been exposed to.

Kimberly Craft:
The University of Arizona has helped design curriculum and provided professional development to ensure students' early success. The early challenge is to bring all students up to grade level and create a culture of academic achievement and learning. To accomplish that, each student receives a handheld device that interfaces with the school's computers and lessons have relevance to their lives. And while students have a goal of going to college they must also have a plan; that means involving the community, families and colleges.

Ronald Mar:
A lot of families, particularly families that come from poor neighborhoods, poor families, just believe there's no way they'll be able to pay for college, so they write it off. But there are lots of ways to pay the bills. So we're working on that piece, as well.

Kimberly Craft:
As an outcome of educating students, the Wildcat School serves as a testing ground for best educational principles. The College of Education have created the Arizona Center for Educational Success as a bridge for exporting lessons learned to other programs statewide.
Students take these lessons to heart and understand the influence of the University of Arizona. The program on Wildcat Wednesday involves a routine of exercises designed by the University of Arizona students in free enterprise, where young wildcats learn the importance of personal finance.

Artie Sosa:
It's showing us a lot about money, how people spend. Like, they start owing money to other people, and then it's showing us like how to save, like how the bank is working, and how we can get like a percentage when we save it in the bank.

Kimberly Craft:
Many students will take classes on the University of Arizona campus by their junior or senior year, placing them at an advantage on graduation.

Teacher:
When they graduate, they could be a sophomore at college. We're hoping to get them caught up and ready to go at that time, so that they totally know what to expect when they enter the university.

Kimberly Craft:
The school year includes one Saturday a month for field trips to the University of Arizona.

Teacher:
And the biochemical measurements we've made in space were exactly patched up on earth.

Kimberly Craft:
And students have frequent visits from university faculty.

Artie Sosa:
So we can, like, see what we want to become.

Matthew Whitaker:
Thanks for joining us on this Tuesday evening; I'm Matthew Whitaker, good night.

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