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Catalina Foothills Unified School District is #1 in Arizona

We’ve got a lot of great things going on in Tucson, but I’m here to tell you about one specifically, the Catalina Foothills Unified School District. You might not be aware but birth rates in the USA are declining

Catalina Foothills High School Student Plaza
Catalina Foothills High School Student Plaza

And in our beloved home state of Arizona, that number has declined almost 22% in the last decade. While that figure may sound shocking to you, I’m here to tell you that it’s actually not a bad thing. It’s common knowledge that our teachers are burdened with disproportionate class sizes to what a single teacher can effectively handle. 

Where am I going with this? I’m so glad you asked. Kids need teachers, teachers need schools, schools have districts, and some are better than others. This is why we are so very happy to inform you that one of ours has been ranked the TOP school district in all of Arizona.

Drumroll, please! If you live in Tucson you may have already guessed but for those of you looking to move here with kids, pay attention. The Catalina Foothills Unified School District has been rated #1 in Arizona according to Newsweek!

Catalina Foothills School District
Catalina Foothills School District

Let’s look at some of the statistics.

What You Need To Know

  1. It’s located in Tucson, obviously the best city in Arizona by far. 
  2. CFUSD has a teacher to student ratio of 1:19, while not ideal it’s comparatively better than the competition. The next jump in other districts is 1 teacher to 23 or more students. Sometimes even 35 students are being wrangled by 1 teacher.
  3. Catalina also boasts a 98% graduation rate, that’s the highest in the state!
  4. According to Zip Recruiter, “As of July 2021 the average annual pay for a teacher in AZ is $26,553 a year.” For Catalina Unified they pay their teachers an average of $45,311 a year. That’s an extra $18,000 for our educators and we believe they deserve every penny and then some.

So, there you have it. If you live in Arizona and have children, you might want to consider relocating to Tucson. Parents should always want the best for their children, Catalina Foothills Unified School District is the best in Arizona, hands down.

Cities with the Fastest Job Growth

We Love Tucson's Playful Architecture, Cities with the Fastest Job Growth

Cities with the Fastest Job Growth

Via an article published August 16, 2016 in Bloomberg.com, an economist, Jed Kolko, “who specializes in U.S. cities and the future of work, points out that mid-sized cities, such as Tucson, Arizona and Seattle, Washington, continue to see fast job growth, but the San Francisco Bay area has fallen out of the top 10.” Tucson ranks number 3 overall on the list, beating out Austin, TX and Seattle, WA.

You can see the Bloomberg article of The Cities With the Fastest Job Growth, and let me know if I can assist you in finding a home in Tucson, so you can get in on this amazing opportunity. I specialize in the downtown area but I can certainly help you find a home anywhere in town, central, northwest, east, and south sides.”Better job security is fueling real estate demand in the south, and a corresponding pick-up in home-builder sentiment. This new construction boom in Tucson has already begun, especially with the revitalization and expansion of Tucson’s booming downtown.”

To give you an idea of the expected job growth in Tucson I was recently at a Downtown Growth and Development seminar (October 2016) and theses were the reported statistics relating to jobs coming to Tucson and below this chart of innovative companies who are or will be headquartered in Tucson.

Prospective Employers Shortlisted or Serious Consideration
Industry Employees Average Wage
Engineering / Manufacturing 1,975 $110,000
Engineering 170 $150,000
Manufacturing 40 $60,000
Professional Services 75 – 100 $75,000
Aerospace and Defense 1,000 $40,000
Manufacturing 60 $46,000
Advanced Services 192 $50,000
Manufacturing 31 $102,000
Total Jobs / Average Wage 3,543 $79,100

Awesome Tucson Companies

Accelerate 120 jobs

Taken from Accelerate’s website: “Accelerate Diagnostics is headquartered in Tucson, Arizona. Set at the base of the majestic Catalina mountain range, Tucson is called “science city” and was recently named one of America’s most innovative cities by Forbes Magazine. The community is quickly becoming a biotech and diagnostics hub, with companies such as Roche, Sanofi Aventis, Syncardia, and HTG Molecular, among others, driving biotech job growth of over 33%.”

Home Goods 900 jobs

ADP 450 jobs

Caterpillar 1,000 jobs

Caterpillar moving it’s headquarters to Tucson will not only provide many new job opportunities, but will also ensure lots of new construction for an overall economic boom! Get ready. Their new office will be located right downtown.

Comcast 1,100 job

World View 400 jobs

You’ve got to check out this innovative company. Here’s just one sentence from their website. “World View is leading the way in the emerging stratospheric economy, offering an innovative and affordable high-altitude flight platform that is transforming access to space.”

I hope you enjoyed discovering a bit more about Tucson. It’s no surprise that Tucson is ranked as one of the Cities with the Fastest Job Growth because many many exciting plans are underway and what I shared with here, is only the tip of the iceberg.

Tucson is Ranked One of the Top U.S. Dog Friendly Cities

A Cute Picture of Baxter that we Overlayed on Top of a Flower Bed in our Garden, a Green Oasis in Tucson, One of the Top U.S. Cities for Man's Best Friend

We Love Tucson Dog Friendly Neighborhoods

If you’ve ever had the pleasure of owning a dog, you’d know that dogs have a powerful, if not magical, effect on humans. They decrease stress and blood pressure levels and can help people overcome feelings of loneliness and depression and so much more. Having a fido friend can drastically improve a person’s quality of life and I know this first hand.

The Huffington Post published an article about the analysis of data collected from a financial consulting company SmartAsset to rank the most wag-worthy cities across the map. The study considered both dog and human-friendly factors. A city’s dog accessibility as in the number of dog parks, dog-friendly shopping areas and dog-friendly restaurants was one and the other was based on the city’s quality of life, which took walk-ability, weather and housing costs into consideration (happy pets need happy owners).

petcationThe ranking is as follows:

  1. San Francisco
  2. Las Vegas
  3. Denver
  4. San Diego
  5. Albuquerque
  6. Sacramento
  7. Chicago
  8. Minneapolis
  9. Tucson
  10. New York City

I’d have to agree that Tucson has a lot of dog-friendly parks, beautiful Tucson dog-friendly walk and bike paths, lots of open properties with acreage for a dog to roam if that’s your style but also many of the homes backyards. There are dog-friendly bars and restaurants and even hiking trails. Tucson loves doggies.

In line with the other ranking, I can attest to that fact that the quality of life in Tucson is also high for humans. Tucson is one of the most affordable places to live, one of the most kid-friendly cities for children, and also a foodies paradise.

If you have any questions about Tucson, relocating, housing please don’t hesitate to call me. I’d be more than happy to speak with you to see if Tucson is right for you and find you your dream home.

Have a great day,
Tony Ray
(520) 631-TONY (8669)
Free relocation package and Tucson fun info

The New York Times Mentions Saguaro National Park

The New York Times recently released an online, interactive list of 52 places around the world where travelers can be a part of the solution, rather than a problem. Because you know us, you know that we are only bringing this to your attention because they mention Tucson! Yep, the good Old Pueblo is in the media yet again. Okay, okay, more specifically they mention the beautiful Saguaro National Park. This national treasure can be found on both the east and west sides of Tucson. Nearly 2 million of the namesake cacti call these 2 parcels of land home and give our desert its distinctive look.
A plaque at the Saguaro National Park displays the cacti growth
A trail plaque from the Saguaro National Park.
As alluded to by the NYT article all 52 places on their list must have a problem to need a solution. In our case, the problem is that we have very few new saguaros, a species that is a notoriously slow grower. Think 75 years old to get its first arm, and not reaching its full height of 45 feet until 200 years old. So, a declining population of these stoic giants is a problem, not just for Tucson but for an entire ecosystem. The article highlights a local conservation project where volunteers work year-round pulling buffalo grass. Why does 1 weed need so much attention you might ask? There are a couple of reasons. The first is because it’s a non-native species that takes much-needed nutrients to other native plants. And secondly because due to climate change, we’ve been experiencing hotter summers. These withering temperatures dry out the buffelgrass and provide ample kindling for wildfires.
Saguaro National Park volunteers put on backpacks
Saguaro National Park volunteers get ready to tackle buffalo grass. Emma Gibson/AZPM
You can help mitigate the buffalo grass by volunteering with the Saguaro National Park. They organize clear-ups year-round. If you don’t want to be outside but still help out, that’s ok too! Find all volunteer opportunities here.