Updegraff-Day, Devon

Meet the Candidate

Running For:
School Board
Peoria Unified School District
(602) 363-3495
Physician Assistant
Master in Health Sciences, set to receieve a doctorate in health sciences this December
Biographical Info:

I am a dermatology physician assistant for almost 14 years, and I co-own a dermatology medical practice. I currently have a master’s degree in health sciences as well as a BA degree in sociology with a minor in anthropology and will be receiving a doctorate in health sciences later this year.

I provide informative lectures on skin cancer diagnosis, treatment, and prevention as well as free skin cancer screenings to the community. I am also a co-founder of West Valley Parents Uniting which was formed to advocate for parental rights.

I have been married for 13 years and I have three children ages 12, 9 and 4. My father is a dermatologist of over 40 years and comes from a long line of military doctors. I have an older brother who is a retired marine and is currently a NCIS agent. Every member of my family are huge animal lovers; we have 2 rescue dogs and 1 beagle. In addition to dogs, I also have 2 retired racehorses that I train and ride in my spare time.


Student performance, parental rights, district accountability and transparency are my top priorities. Specifically, I want to simplify curriculum, reduce 3rd party resource contracts thereby also reducing unnecessary spending. As an academic myself, I expect students to step up to higher academic standards and far exceed the currently low academic expectation.

I expect accountability by all. Students today have no consequences and lack all forms of structure. I hope to bring back structure and accountability to the district and put an end to expensive and unsuccessful programs such as Positive Systems of Support, Restorative Justice and Multi-Systems of Support. These program have allowed kids to get away with violence and vandalism, causing the school days for both teachers and fellow students to become miserable.
Fellow candidate Heather Rooks and I have been working together, fighting for parental rights for over 2 years and if both elected, things would finally change for the better!


Arizona Free Enterprise Club


Response Legend

  • SSupports
  • OOpposes
  • *Comment
  • Declined to respond
  • Declined to respond, Position based on citation

Question Response Comments/Notes
1. Requiring school officials, including teachers, to inform parents about their child’s social, mental, emotional, or physical health S* Parents have the ultimate say. School officials, teachers and even health care workers should not be undermining parents or intentionally keeping them in the dark. Until the age of 18, one is a considered a minor and for good reason. It is not until our late teens, early 20s that we begin to develop the portion of our brain that is able to understand and factor long term consequences into our decision making. Adolescents are about the here and now and lack the ability to think beyond it. It is up to the trusted adults, ie parents, to protect their child's long term interest until have the capability to do so on their own.
2. Allowing parents to opt their children out of activities or lessons they find offensive to their personal, moral, or religious beliefs S* Schools, or any government institution, do not have to right to impede on one's religious beliefs. Anything taught to a child at a public school that interferes with a parent's constitutional right to pass on their religious beliefs to their child should be prohibited. Parents must be fully informed and be given the option to opt out prior to the lesson. A parent cannot opt out if they do not know a specific topic is being discussed and once it is taught to a child it cannot be taken back.
3. Increasing state and local taxes to provide more funding for schools and school facility projects O* Our failing school are not because of lack of funding and it is not because we lack top quality facilities or a lack of technology. Schools are failing to teach our children because our focus seems to be on anything but academics. The money is being wasted at district administration offices not in the classrooms.
4. Requiring signed permission from a parent before a student may participate in any sexuality related instruction, activities, or clubs. S* It all comes down to parental rights.
5. Allowing all parents to use tax credits, vouchers, or education savings accounts to enable children to attend any public, charter, private, homeschool, or online academy S* The money should follow the child without government tentacles attached to it. If a child would perform better at a smaller school, then they have every right to make whatever change necessary to succeed. I believe in choices and competition.
6. Requiring full-day kindergarten for all students O* Many countries that out perform the US do not start mandatory education until the age of 7. We should not be rushing parents to place their young child in school all day, only giving up precious one on one time with their little one.
7. Mandating sex education classes for 5th-12th grade students O* Sex education should never be mandated and I will never support comprehensive sex education. Sex education should be about protection and prevention, nothing more.
8. Allocating teacher pay raises based upon merit rather than providing uniform salary schedule increases based upon years of teaching or additional credentialing (e.g. masters degrees) S* Master degrees in education have shown to offer no benefit or additional skills in the teaching profession. Salaries should be based on student/parent feedback, peer feedback, student performance and student behavior.
9. Implementing policies to allow students and faculty to use the restroom, locker room, and shower room that aligns with their gender identity O* Schools can and do accommodate students who align with the opposite sex by allowing them to use a private bathroom. There is no need to change the entire school or district policy for a very small handful of kids. Accommodations can me easily made.
10. Teaching what is known as diversity, equity, inclusion (DEI); social, emotional learning (SEL); or critical race theory (CRT) in public schools. O* DEI, SEL and CRT are one in the same and only waste precious time money and resources. All should be eliminated as the only do harm rather than good.
11. Increasing academic (curriculum) transparency by requiring each public school to post online for parents and the public a list of all instructional materials being used in the classroom. S* Heather Rooks and I have been battling with districts on their intentional lack of transparency for 2 years. Our children and their education are not a game and it should not require public record requests to find out the truth .