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  • "A" Rated School

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  • Governing Board Selects New Superintendent

    The Higley Unified School District Governing Board voted unanimously Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2015, to name Dr. Mike Thomason the next Superintendent of the district. He will begin in his new position July 1, 2015.

    Dr. Thomason, currently the assistant superintendent of operations for Higley Unified School District, brings more than 20 years of education and leadership to the helm. He was selected following a nearly 7-month-long search that included input from Higley teachers, staff, parents, business leaders and community members. Dr. Thomason was one of four finalists for the position.

    "It is an honor to be selected as Higley’s next superintendent," said Dr. Thomason. “My goal is to continue along the forward path created the last few years to connect, engage, and inspire every Higley student to reach his and her full potential. I am excited about this opportunity, especially the chance to continue working with our amazing teachers and staff.”

    Dr. Thomason began his career as a special education teacher in Arizona. His past experience includes being a department chair, guidance counselor, and assistant principal, as well as a high school coach.

    He joined the Higley Unified School District in 2009 as the director of special education. In 2011, he was named assistant superintendent of student services. In 2013, he assumed his current role as assistant superintendent of operations.

    Dr. Thomason holds Bachelor of Science Degrees in special education and elementary education from Arizona State University. He received a Master of Arts degree in guidance counseling from Ottawa University in 2001. He earned his doctorate degree in educational leadership and policy from ASU in 2009.

    Current Superintendent Dr. Denise Birdwell announced her plans to retire in spring 2014. Her final day will be June 30, 2015, the last day of her current contract.

    Higley Unified School District serves about 12,000 students enrolled in its 12 schools and two preschools.

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  • Athletic Update
    3rd quarter playoff games begin Monday, February 23
    Basketball 7th grade at Newell Barney Junior High 4:30 PM
    Basketball 8th grade at Payne Junior High 5:30 PM
    Baseball 7th grade at Santan Junior High 4:00 PM
    Baseball 8th grade at home vs Newell Barney Junior High 4:15 PM
    Wrestling Tournament Saturday February 28th
    Wrestling at Basha High School 8:30 AM
    Tryouts for 4th quarter have not been scheduled yet because we are still looking to fill some coaching positions. Stay tuned for updates.

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  • February ‘Higley Happenings’ available online
    The recent edition of the ‘Higley Happenings’ mailed home included an error on the number of English credits needed for graduation. High school students need 4 English credits to graduate. We regret the error. A corrected version of the newsletter is posted here.

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  • Open Enrollment
    Open enrollment registration for all of our campuses for the 2015-16 school year begins Dec. 1, with priority given to applications received by Feb. 1. Click here to find the Open Enrollment Application.
    Applications may be turned in at the campus you wish your child to attend.
    District boundary maps for elementary, middle school and high school are located here. Please complete the application form and return to the school during business hours.

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  • Information online about new state assessment - AZMERIT
    In November 2014, the Arizona State Board of Education adopted a new statewide language arts and math achievement test, AzMERIT, to assess Arizona students. The assessment will be administered this spring in grades 3 through high school. Students in grades 4, 8 and high school will still take the AIMS Science Test. Students scheduled to graduate prior to December 31, 2016 will still be required to pass the AIMS test in Reading, Writing, and Math if they have not previously passed the exam.
    The Arizona Department of Education has posted information about the test for all stakeholders.
    Higley’s Research and Assessment team has created a section with all the information pertinent to parents. It can be found here.

    You may view the entire ADE website about AzMERIT.
    Students will be taking the test between March 30 and May 8.  Each school will provide further communication to families as test schedules are finalized. For Higley students, this will be a completely computer-based assessment.

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  • Release of student reminder
    Students who leave campus for any reason – doctors’ visits, illness, etc., - must be authorized to do so by a parent or guardian. This can be done by a parent/guardian signature in person at the school office or by verbal approval to school office personnel.  When the student does leave campus with verbal approval to do so, he/she must sign the student release page at the front office.
    The attendance clerk or other office staff member will validate the request as deemed appropriate. Thank you for your cooperation.

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  • Free immunizations available

    Chaparral Elementary School will host a series of free immunization clinics by the Chandler Regional Medical Center over the next few months, giving parents an opportunity to immunize children with school vaccinations.
    The hospital’s Community Wellness Children’s Immunization Program aims to provide free immunizations to children 6 weeks to 18 years old.
    The next Chandler Regional Medical Center clinic at Chaparral, 3380 E. Frye Road, Gilbert, will be in the school’s cafeteria 3:30 p.m.- 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 18. Future clinic date is April 8.
    More information about this federally–funded program is here.

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  • Letter to Parents from Dr. Mahlerwein
    Dear CMS Parents,

    At the beginning of this school year, I provided a guest commentary for a column published in the East Valley Tribune. (Link to article.)  In this commentary, I mentioned the importance of setbacks being a part of learning, and that as hard as it is for us parents to not step in and pick up our children every time they fall down or struggle, this process is critical for their development into lifelong learners and to eventually become successful adults.  As a middle school administrator for the past 10 years, I have observed that my most successful students are those that have the perseverance to overcome adversity.  They are the ones that have a work ethic and a “will do” attitude.  Many parents ask me the question, “How do I motivate my child?” This is something that begins in the early years of one’s life and is developed over time with how we talk to our children, what we show them we value, and how we parent.  I have attached a short (1:31 min) video and a quick article that all parents should read. You may note that the article mentions Stanford psychology professor Carol Dweck’s work, “Mindset”.  This book has changed my approach to parenting, learning and life.  Most of the time, I speak with CMS parents as their child’s principal.  Today, I am speaking to you as a parent. Just like all of you, I love my children more than anything in the world.  I believe the “growth mindset” approach is incredibly critical for my children. It is my hope that everyone makes the time to look into this approach with an open mind. Please see this link  for the video and article.


    Dr. Randy Mahlerwein

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  • 2015-16 Calendar Reminder

    Beginning next school year, the district is moving to a modified year-round school calendar. Classes begin July 27, 2015, with a two-week fall break, two-week winter break and two-week spring break. The last day of classes is May 26, 2016, and the last day for teachers is May 27, 2016. For information, go online to www.husd.org/newcalendars.

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  • Support Cooley and receive up to $400 AZ Tax Credit
    The state of Arizona allows you to receive a tax credit of up to $200 ($400 if married and filing jointly) when you make an ECA tax credit donation to our school. We will use your tax dollar donation to help fund extra curricular activities and opportunities for our students to extend their learning beyond the regular school day and you will get a dollar-for-dollar credit towards your tax return. Before and after school tutoring, school clubs and field trip experiences are just a few of the enrichment programs that are made possible when ECA funds are donated to our school.  Please name Cooley Middle School as the recipient of your donation so that we may provide quality enrichment programs like these for our learners. We appreciate your support and are dedicated to spending your tax dollars responsibly.
    We THANK YOU for your tax credit donations.
    Click here to donate
    If you wish to mail your payment, please click here for more information. 
    Interested in more information about ECA tax credits?

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  • Google Apps for Education are Coming to Cooley

    We are pleased to share that beginning on October 27, 2014, HUSD 7th and 8th grade students have access to Google Apps for Education! Google Apps offers students a set of tools for communication, collaboration, time management, and file storage, allowing your student to be
    more efficient and productive.

    Interested in more information about how Google Apps will be used in our classrooms? View this video that explains Google Apps and will answer some of your questions.  

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  • Lunch Monitor and Crossing Guards Needed
    Looking for an opportunity to work part time at Cooley Middle School? We have openings for lunch monitor and crossing guard positions. Please call Heather Preston at 480-279-8311 for more information or apply online.

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  • Library Recycling Fundraiser
    Please donate your empty printer cartridges, old (but working) cell phones, tablets, laptops, digital cameras, mp3 players, GPS systems, and headphones to the Cooley Media Center.  We will recycle these items and receive cash to help purchase books for our library.  We would also like to partner with businesses to recycle their printer cartridges to help support our school.  If you work for a company who would be willing to donate, you can send those items to the Media Center as well.  Thanks for your support!

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  • Cooley Spirit Wear and New Fan Gear!!
    We have some new Cooley Fan Gear! Clear plastic water bottles, hand-held "Are You Cooley Enough?" fans and CMS vinyl window clings are available for purchase. Finally feeling the chill of some cooler weather? Show your Cooley Cougar spirit in one of this year's new lightweight jackets or a warmer hoodie. Get a jumpstart on some great holiday gifts for your favorite Cooley Cougar now! Orders can be placed using the Spirit Wear order form or the Fan Gear order form.  Return the completed form along with payment to the front office and be ready to rock your Cooley Spirit!
    jacket           water bottle

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  • Cooley Middle School Ranked No. 2 district middle school in Arizona
    The Arizona Department of Education recently released school performance rankings based on spring 2014 AIMS scores. We are proud to announce that all elementary, middle and high schools in the Higley Unified School District earned “A” ratings and Cooley and Sossaman Middle Schools tied to receive the second highest number of points among all 7-8  district schools in the state.
    For the last four years, the Arizona Department of Education has rated school performances with letter grades based on academic growth and student achievement. This is the fourth year in a row that the Higley Unified School District has earned an “A” grade. Higley Unified School District was the top point earner for large, public school districts in Arizona this year. In fact, five of our eight elementary schools are in the Top 10 percent of all K-6 schools in Arizona.
    “We are elated to share our ‘A’ grades with Higley families, the Towns of Gilbert and Queen Creek and the entire Valley,” said Superintendent Dr. Denise Birdwell. “It is a testament to the work of our teachers, staff, students and families. Finding out Higley is the top, large school district in the state brings recognition to the hard work of the entire Higley schools community. From students and their parents to the teachers, bus drivers, classroom aides and school principals, we wish to thank everyone for their efforts that contribute to making Higley the best district in the Valley.”
    Congratulations to all of the Cooley Cougars - students, families, teachers and staff.
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  • Parentvue
    Parents can see student grades and attendance records through a system called “ParentVue.” Teachers post assignments and grades, along with daily attendance, on the system that can then be viewed by parents through a home computer or cell phone. Teachers post links to ParentVue (sometimes referred to as "Online grades") through their teacher webpages. You can also reach ParentVue through this link.

    To use ParentVue, parents need a personal code created by their student’s school. Please visit your school office for more information.

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  • Be "In the Know" with E-Alert Emails

    We use E-Alerts to send information and reminders about important events at Cooley Middle School. Sign up now to receive information specific to Cooley Middle School

    Registration is easy!

    Go to  www.husd.org/ealerts to register your email and select Cooley Middle School and any other district or school site that applies to you.

    Don't wait, sign up today for E-Alerts!

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  • Learn more about Middle School
    Cooley and Sossaman Middle Schools are Higley Unified School Districts state-of-the-art campuses for seventh- and eighth graders. We offer a comprehensive program that includes rigorous academics, as well as the arts, athletics and STEM classes.

    Want to learn more about Cooley and Sossaman Middle Schools? Cooley Principal Dr. Randy Mahlerwein and Sossaman Principal Ms. Nancy Diab talk about their schools in this video.

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Welcome to Cooley Middle School,

We are excited to begin the tradition of academic excellence at Cooley Middle School. We believe that with perseverance, will, and fortitude our students will gain the skills to excel both academically and socially. Our focused, intentional curriculum is designed so that students connect with their learning and become vested stakeholders in their education. Extracurricular activities and electives provide opportunities for students to access technology, the arts, and athletics in state-of-the-art facilities. We welcome the opportunity to challenge, enrich, and grow with your child. Go Cougars!
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