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Hoffman takes oath of office on children’s book

By: - January 7, 2019 4:14 pm

Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman takes the oath of office from Arizona Supreme Court Chief Justice Scott Bales on Jan. 7, 2019. Photo by Jerod MacDonald-Evoy | Arizona Mirror

Kathy Hoffman took her oath of office as Arizona’s superintendent of public instruction on a children’s book that she’s often used to help students who have limited communication skills.

Hoffman was sworn in on the book “Too Many Moose!” by author Lisa Bakos and illustrator Mark Chambers. Hoffman, who worked as a speech therapist in the Peoria Unified School District, told Arizona Mirror that the book was one of her students’ favorites because it “brought joy in being able to communicate in a fun and engaging way.”

Too Many Moose

My students, and all of Arizona’s students, were very much on my mind as I was sworn in today – using ‘Too Many Moose’ helped remind me why I ran for office in the first place,” Hoffman said in a statement her office provided to the Mirror.

In her inauguration speech, Hoffman talked about one of her students with severe language issues. She told the crowd at the Capitol about one of her students who was unable to speak due to brain damage, and communicated with five picture cards that had simple words such as “eat” and “drink” on them so he could indicate that he was hungry or thirsty.

Rather than leave him limited to just five words, Hoffman said she taught him to use an iPad so he could communicate more extensively. By the end of the school year, he was able say all of his friends’ names, talk about his favorite video games and tell his mother that he loves her.

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Jeremy Duda
Jeremy Duda

Jeremy Duda is a Phoenix native and began his career in journalism in 2003 after graduating from the University of Arizona. Jeremy Duda previously served as the Mirror's associate Editor. Prior to joining the Arizona Mirror, he worked at the Arizona Capitol Times, where he spent eight years covering the Governor's Office and two years as editor of the Yellow Sheet Report. Before that, he wrote for the Hobbs News-Sun of Hobbs, NM, and the Daily Herald of Provo, Utah. Jeremy is also the author of the history book “If This Be Treason: the American Rogues and Rebels Who Walked the Line Between Dissent and Betrayal.”