Frequently Asked Questions

School Information
     What are the basics I need to know about Mabel Padgett Elementary?
The best resource for school information is the school website at
Mailing address: 272 E. Sagebrush St, Litchfield Park, AZ 85340
Physical location: Just north of Indian School Road at the intersection of Falcon Drive and Turney Road in the Palm Valley Phase 5 subdivision
Office hours: 7:10am - 3:40pmSchool hours: 7:40am - 2:25pm
Attendance Line: 623.547.3200School Office: 623.547.3200
School colors: Black and GoldSchool Mascot: Panthers
Principal: Mrs. Gina DeCoste
     What is the school floor plan?
     What is the school dress code?
We encourage students to take pride in their attire as it relates to the school setting. The final decision as to the appropriateness of dress shall be determined by the administration. The following clothing/garments/articles ARE NOT permitted on campus or at any school activity:
  • Low-hanging or sagging pants, including, exposure of any undergarments. Pants and shorts will be worn covering the buttocks.
  • Hair nets, skull caps, "do-rags" and bandanas.
  • Strapless, spaghetti-strap, razor-back or backless dresses or blouses, halter tops. All undergarments must be fully covered.
  • Blouses or shirts of a transparent or mesh material revealing a bare midriff or shoulders.
  • Tops which are so short they cannot be tucked in.
  • Muscle shirts and oversized tanks that over-expose the body must have a t-shirt worn underneath.
  • Spandex shorts, side-split shorts, or brief shorts. Shorts will cover the buttocks.
  • Pajamas of any kind (exception if Spirit Week - PJ day only).
  • Bare feet and slippers are not acceptable.
  • No clothing, hats, jewelry, or accessories that display inappropriate messages or symbols; no clothing which promotes alcohol, drugs, tobacco, gang affiliation, nudity or profanity; no clothing with messages or pictures referring to death, violence, Satanism, racism, weapons, sex, profane or obscene statements.
Adapted from the LESD Student Handbook 2012-2013 - see LESD website for complete dress code policy
     What are the rules in a school zone?
For the safety of our children, please SLOW DOWN in the school zone! It is also a good idea to stop talking on the phone while driving in or around the school so that your undivided attention can be focused on safety. Here is a summary of school zone rules from the West Valley View 8/4/09 edition:
  • Fines double for traffic violations in school zones.
  • There is zero tolerance in a school zone. You can be cited for going 16mph in a 15mph zone.
  • When children are crossing, wait for the crosswalk to be completely clear before proceeding.
  • Passing is not permitted in a school zone, not matter how slow another vehicle is traveling. It is considered passing if you go around a car that is waiting to turn.
  • Once you have driven entirely past the posted signs, you may resume the normal speed for that street.
  • Do not park or stop in a bicycle lane.
  • Do not pass a school bus that has its red light flashing and its stop-arm extended. The law allows vehicle to pass a stopped school bus when there is a raised median between lanes of traffic.
     Where is parent drop off and pick up?
Parents will drop off on the Falcon Drive (East) side of the school. Buses will drop off in the front of the school (Turney Drive).
     What if my child is late for school?
The first bell rings at 7:30am and all children should head to their classrooms at that time. The tardy bell rings at 7:40am. If you child arrives after 7:40am, he/she is considered late and you must park your car and walk your child into the office to sign them in.
     How do I know what days are early release or no school?
To view the school calendar, follow the link under the Resources tab of the PTO website to the Mabel Padgett Elementary website and click on the MPES Calendar link.
     What is the school visitor policy?
As required by state law, all visitors must first report to the school office to sign the register and receive a visitor's badge. In addition, all visitors must have documented permission to be on campus. All visitors meeting students must be listed by the child's parent or guardian on the Emergency Contact List on file with the school registrar. To change your Emergency Contact List please visit the school office. All visitors are required to show a valid ID and must obide by the school dress code.

Visitors are encouraged to inquire into the operation of the school, to visit classrooms and the cafeteria, and to familiarize themselves with school programs. We ask that arrangements be made with the school at least one day prior to visiting the classrooms. All visitors are expected to conduct themselves in an appropriate manner.

Adapted from the LESD Student Handbook 2012-2013
     What is the school visitor lunch policy?
Parents are encouraged to come to school and eat lunch with their children. As always, you must first report to the school office to sign in and receive a visitor's badge. Ask your child's teacher or the school office for your child's lunch time. There are parent tables set up on the south side of the cafeteria where parents may sit with their child(ren) only. In addition, there are peanut free tables for those with peanut allergies. We request that only those with peanut allergies sit at these tables. Birthday parties are not allowed during lunchtime (cakes, balloons, etc).
     What if I need to pick up my child from school early?
If you need to pick up your child early, you must come into the office to sign your child out. You cannot phone ahead to have your child "ready", as your ID must be verified in person. The adult picking up must be listed on the student's Emergency Contact List in order for a child to be released. Once your identification has been verified, the office will call your child's classroom and have them come to the office to meet you. Please allow adequate time for this process - it can take a few minutes. The cut-off for early release requests is 1:55pm, as teachers and students are occupied after that time packing up, lining up and preparing to exit the school. The safety of all children is our top priority.
     What if my child loses an item at school?
You must assume sole responsibility for loss of, or damage to, your property. MPE will endeavor to protect, but is not responsible for personal property. Found articles should be taken to the lost and found area located in the cafeteria. Unclaimed articles will be given to charity during the school year. Lost articles may be claimed before or after school or during lunches. Put identification marks on your personal belongings.
Student Information
     What is Panther Pride Assembly?
Mabel Padgett Elementary holds an all-school Panther Pride Assembly once a month in the Gym or Courtyard. This Assembly is a chance for the entire student body, teachers, staff and parents to come together and recite pledges, sing, hear important announcements, celebrate accomplishments and show school spirit. Student of the Month Awards are given out during the Assembly. Parents are highly encouraged to attend. The Assembly is generally held on the last Friday of the month in the morning.
Parent Information
     How do I volunteer in my child's classroom?
Parental involvement is highly encouraged at MPE. All volunteers must fill out forms and attend training before beginning work as a volunteer. Please check with school office personnel or PTO website for dates and times of volunteer training sessions. Contact your child's teacher to arrange an appropriate time for you to assist in the classroom.
     How do I volunteer with the PTO?
The PTO relies 100% on our volunteers. We have many opportunities throughout the year where you can give of your time and talents to help our teachers and students. The first step is to become a member of the Mabel Padgett PTO. Simply register on our website using the "login or register" button on the upper left portion of the homepage Membership is quick, easy and FREE!
     If I become a member of the PTO, what is my time commitment?
There is no time commitment required. You can simply become a member to receive our e-newsletters and updates on events happening around MPE. That being said, we do rely 100% on volunteers and appreciate any time you can give. Many events have 30 minute time slots for volunteers that make it easy to give a little time when you can. Check the event section of the website homepage for current volunteer opportunities or contact one of our leaders listed in the Leadership section of the website.
     What is the Arizona Public Schools Tax Credit?
The Arizona Public Schools Tax Credit is a way you can show your financial support to our students, that does not cost you anything. This program provides for a 100% reimbursement of your contribution to our school. Here's how it works: You can send all your state taxes to the State of Arizona or make a contribution to a public school and receive a State Income Tax Credit for up to $200 for tax payers who file a tax return as single or head of household and a maximum of $400 for married couples filing jointly on your State Income Tax Return. A.R.S. 43-1089.01 gives you this opportunity to help your local school.

A tax credit, which is the dollar-for dollar reduction of your tax liability, is better than a tax deduction, which only reduces your taxable income before taxes are computed. The tax credit is available to all taxpayers, regardless of whether they have children in school. It would be advisable to consult your tax advisor regarding your specific tax status.

You may select which school and which program you would like to support. Mabel Padgett PTO is encouraging parents to make their contribution to MPE Field Trips. The amount of the tax credit you take does not have to be for the total allowance. You can make a difference in our schools with just $50, $75, or $100. In addition, the credit may be split between one or more schools.

To take advantage of the tax credit, simply complete the form "LESD Tax Credit" under the Resources tab of the PTO website and return to the school office by December 15, 2009 or mail to the District Office prior to December 31, 2009. It is easy! The district will provide you with a receipt verifying that you have contributed to an eligible extracurricular activity.