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ANNOUNCEMENTS

Announcements

  • A+ School of Excellence


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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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  • HYSL Softball & Baseball Registration Now Open
     
    Higley Youth Sports League 's last season of the year will be baseball and softball. Registration is now open for both boys and girls in Grades 5-6. The program will be offered at all of our district elementary schools. Cost: $50. Registration is open and online now. Registration deadline is 5 p.m. March 19, 2015. For additional information, call the Community Education Office at (480)279-7055.
     
    Baseball & Softball information

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  • Calling all future kindergartners!

    We enjoyed seeing everyone during Kindergarten Round-up. If you missed this opportunity, it is not too late! All elementary schools will accept registration during school hours.
     
    Please be sure to bring the following documents for registration: Child’s Birth Certificate, Child’s Immunization Record, Proof of Residency (contract on your house, rental or lease agreement, electric bill, etc.), Driver’s License, Completed enrollment packet.
     
    Who qualifies for kindergarten?
    If your child will be 5 by Aug. 31, 2015, he or she qualifies for the 2015-2016 school year. If your child will be 5 between Sept. 1, 2015, and Dec. 31, 2015, you may consider having your child tested to see if he/she qualifies for early entrance kindergarten. Information on early entrance can also be found here.


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  • Higley Kids Club Spring Break Camp registration open
     
    Registration is now open for Kids Club’s Spring Break Camp, to be held 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday, March 9-Friday, March 13, and Monday, March 16. Camp will be held at Chaparral Elementary School, 3380 E. Frye Road, Gilbert. It is open to students in preschool through sixth grade and includes fun on-site events and off-site field trips. Cost is $40/day per child. Families not currently signed up for Kids Club will also need to complete registration paperwork and pay the annual fee.  Information can be found here.
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  • Sossaman to host football clinic
     
    Who: 5th & 6th graders are invited to the HOME OF THE 2014 EVC FOOTBALL CHAMPIONS for a 3-day football clinic with the Spartan Football caching staff and members of the Higley High Varsity Football program.
    When: 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. March 31-April 2
    Where: Sossaman Middle School
    Cost: $20
     
    Click here for more information. 
     

     
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  • Our School needs your help in the "Bag the Bench" contest
     
    Recycle plastic bags, save the environment. Win a Bench, it’s that easy.

    Fact: Plastic bags are not allowed in blue barrels because they get caught in recycling machinery and there are limited options for recycling them. Our school is competing with other elementary schools in different municipalities to collect the most plastic bags and win a bench.

    The collection drive will run from February 2 – March 6, 2015. Please send your bags to school with your child or bring them to the front office. Thank you for participating! The rules are as follows:

    • The following types of SOFT plastics will be accepted:
    Grocery bags/ dry cleaning bags / bread bags/department store bags/ shrink wrap
    • All bags should be free of liquid or food residue.
    • NO RECEIPTS should be left in the bags. They contaminate the batch!
    • Obvious looting of merchants for harvesting of bags will not be accepted and may result in the disqualification of your school. The only bags submitted should be bags that were actually used.
    • All soft plastics should be wadded up tightly – golf ball size. The bags can also be tied into knots to a golf ball size.


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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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  • 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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  • 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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  • 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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  • Cortina Elementary and All Higley Schools Earn 'A' Ratings from
    Arizona Department of Education
     
    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.

    The news was announced as nearly 12,000 students in preschool through high school began their first day of the 2014-15 school year.
     
    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.”
     


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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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  • Lunch Money Update
     
    School offices will now have a secure “lunch money” drop box at their front offices. Parents and students who need to add money to their accounts can place the funds in envelopes at each school’s front desk and place that into the secured box.

    Parent can still stop by the cafeteria during and after meal times when needed to talk with cafeteria managers.
     

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WELCOME

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Cortina School is a community school in Higley Unified School District serving neighborhood kindergarten through sixth grade students. Our learning environment provides each and every child the opportunity to learn and grow in a challenging and safe environment.

We make learning relevant and fun through discovery science, current events, hands-on mathematics and academics, as well as a full rounded curriculum of physical education, art and music.

We offer a full menu of athletics, arts, and school sponsored clubs and organizations to meet the needs and interests of each student. We invite you and your child to join our professional teaching staff, dedicated parents and hard-working students at Cortina School where we are dedicated to life-long learning for all.

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