Maeser Updates: 14 April 2023

In This Edition

Assessment Announcements (RISE), Volunteer Help Needed (Counseling Donations, Maeser Appreciation Week, Senior Capstone Project: Snacks, Report Your Volunteer Hours, Questions About Volunteer Hours), Sports Announcements (Spring Sports Academic Eligibility, Sports Physicals, Maeser Sports Guide), Counseling Announcements (Counseling Donations, Helping Your Student with Test Anxiety), Can We Reach You In Case Of Emergency? (Opt In For School Text Messages, Update Your Contact Information)

Front Office Hours This Week

7:30am-4:00pm Mon-Thurs
8:30am-12:30pm Fri

**PARENTS: Please remember to check in at the front office when visiting the school during school hours, including Fridays. We appreciate your help in keeping our students safe!**

Upcoming Dates and Deadlines

Friday, April 14
8am Utah Aspire Plus Make-up Testing

April 24-27
RISE Testing – 7th & 8th grades (in-class)

May 1-17
AP Exams

Thursday, May 25
Class of 2023 Cap & Gown Photo; Senior Breakfast (seniors)
Advisory & Awards Day Assembly (all students)

Friday, May 26
9am Graduation Rehearsal
1pm Graduation Ceremony

Maeser Classical Literature Scholarship

Available only to Maeser seniors, this scholarship awards $500 for first place and $250 for second place. Essays (750 words) answering the prompt: “What piece of classical literature moved you to think about life and people in new ways, and how did it change you?” should be sent to Mr. Simmons ( no later than 11:59pm on Friday, April 28th.

Class of 2023 Graduation Activities

Thursday, May 25: Class Cap & Gown photo; Senior breakfast at Maeser
Friday, May 26: Graduation Rehearsal & Ceremony at Thanksgiving Point Show Barn

  • 9:00am: Graduation Rehearsal (mandatory for all graduates!)
  • 1:00pm: Graduation Ceremony — each graduate may invite up to 8 guests to attend

Lunch Update: Wednesdays

Starting this Wednesday, April 19, pizza prices will be $2/slice. We apologize for the change; however, Little Caesars has raised their prices.

Assessment Announcements

It’s that time of year again… when we assess our students’ growth and proficiency in core subject areas!

The Utah State Board of Education has implemented summative assessments for our students in grades 7-10 (as required by Utah Statute 53E-4-303): middle school students take RISE tests for English, Writing (8th grade only), Science and Math; students in 9th and 10th grades take Utah Aspire Plus – a special pre-ACT test for 9th and 10th grade students that provides a predictive ACT score and areas for improvement to prepare for the ACT, as well as growth and proficiency scores for Utah standards.

These changes provide our students with improved assessments that help prepare them to succeed on the ACT and other college readiness exams.

8th Grade RISE
Multistage adaptive summative tests in English, Math, Science and Writing

7th Grade RISE
Multistage adaptive summative tests in English, Math, and Science

2023 State Testing Schedule for Students in 7th-8th Grades

Middle school students will take their RISE tests in class Monday-Friday, April 24-27.

Please make every effort to avoid scheduling appointments during state testing, to avoid interruptions and distractions during testing.

We appreciate your help in creating a focused and productive testing environment for our students!

Assessment FAQs

7th & 8th Grades: Readiness Improvement Success Empowerment (RISE)

What is RISE?
The RISE assessment is a multistage computer adaptive criterion referenced assessment system that includes summative tests for English, Math, Science, and Writing.

Will RISE be computer adaptive?
Yes, the statute requires these tests to be computer adaptive, but this assessment will be multistage adaptive instead of item adaptive.

How does a multistage adaptive test differ from an item adaptive test?
Both testing methods are algorithm-based approaches to administering testing, but rather than selecting individual items, groups of items are selected, building the test in stages.

The biggest advantage for our students is that they will now be allowed to navigate backward and forward within each stage or test section, so they can review and revise their answers as needed! The inability to go back and change an answer to a previously submitted question was one of the biggest frustrations our students had when taking prior state tests, so we’re thrilled that this functionality has been built in to RISE.

Which students will participate in RISE and for which subjects?
Maeser students in grades 7-8 will participate in RISE. Both grades will be tested in English, math, and science; in addition, 8th grade students will be tested in writing.

Why aren’t we assessing writing in all grades anymore?
The Utah State Board of Education made a policy decision to only assess writing in grades 5, 8, and 11. Writing is still part of the Utah English Language Arts standards and it is expected that students will be taught and assessed in those standards in their English classes.

Where can I get more information about RISE?
The USBE has produced a short video introducing the new test – you can access it here: Introducing RISE (Readiness, Improvement, Success, Empowerment).

Make-up Testing & Parental Exclusions

What if my student has to miss their scheduled testing?
Missing a RISE test day does not excuse the student from state testing. We will be pulling students out of class in May for make-up and completion testing. Please make every effort to have your student here on the scheduled testing dates so they can avoid missing class in the last critical weeks of school.

Can I opt my student out of RISE?
While we hope you will allow your student to participate in RISE – both to help your student learn how to test well on standardized tests in preparation for the ACT and to help our school improve instruction – we will always respect a parent’s desire to exclude their student from state testing. Though you can submit a Parental Exclusion Form at any point, submitting the form to the school at least ONE WEEK prior to the start of RISE testing will help us ensure that your student does not access the test and is not scheduled for make-up testing.

Volunteer Help Needed

Counseling Donations

The Middle School Counseling team is in need of large bags of individual sized candy. You can use this towards your volunteer hours!

  • Kind: an assortment- chocolate, hard candy like jolly ranchers, tootsie pops or rolls, whatever comes in the assorted bags is fine. We would like some non-chocolate as well.
  • Amount: 4-5 bags/month

Maeser Appreciation Week

Maeser Appreciation Week is May 1st-5th and we need HELP! Volunteer to help with breakfast and lunches for our team during that week. By the suggestion of parents last year, it was easier to donate gift cards to local restaurants and use those to have lunches brought in (please drop off gift cards in front office by April 28th). We are going to try that again. THANK YOU for helping show our team how much they’re appreciated this year! For every $5 = 1 Volunteer hour. You have been AMAESERING in supporting our Maeser team this year and we really love our Maeser Community!

For more information and to sign up, please visit our SignUpGenius: Teacher Appreciation Opportunities.

Senior Capstone Project: Snacks

Seth Larsen, a senior, is conducting his Capstone project and needs some help with donations. He will be handing out snacks during lunch to students who have forgotten lunch. Once supplies have been obtained, Seth will publish the place and time for students to find him to receive this service if needed. Please consider donating to his project if you can. Supplies should be marked with his name and dropped off in the front office by next Friday, April 21st. For more information and to sign up, please visit our SignUpGenius: Food Bank: Snacks for Students Who Forgot Lunch.

Report Your Volunteer Hours

DON’T FORGET! Report your volunteer hours once you’ve dropped off your donation: Report Parent Service Hours. Each $5 spent for donations counts as one hour of volunteer service!

Questions About Volunteer Hours?

Contact us at

Sports Announcements

Spring Sports Academic Eligibility

Eligibility for participation in spring activities/sports will be determined by 2nd and 3rd term grades. All students (middle and high school) must have earned a 2.7 GPA with no Fs. In addition, high school students cannot have any Fs/NGs/Incompletes from previous high school terms. All Fs/NGs must be made up by the last day of term.

Sports Physicals

All students, middle school and high school, who will be playing sports this year (2022-23) need a physical in order to play. Physicals completed on or after March 10, 2022 are good until July 15, 2023. Any physicals completed before March 10, 2022 will not be accepted (per UHSAA policy) for this school year.

Here is a link to the UHSAA form which Maeser uses for ALL athletes: UHSAA Physical Form

Maeser Sports Guide

For a list of the sports that are available at Maeser for both MS and HS students, click here: Maeser Sports Guide. The Sports Guide includes whether the team is boys, girls, or coed, when tryouts are, who the coach is, and the coach’s contact information, if it is available.

Counseling Announcements

Counseling Donations

The Middle School Counseling team is in need of large bags of individual sized candy. You can use this towards your volunteer hours!

  • Kind: an assortment- chocolate, hard candy like jolly ranchers, tootsie pops or rolls, whatever comes in the assorted bags is fine. We would like some non-chocolate as well.
  • Amount: 4-5 bags/month

Helping Your Student with Test Anxiety

With end of the year testing upon us, some students may experience testing anxiety. Here are some things you can help your student with:

Things They Can Control

While we can’t control much about the actual test, there are definitely things we can control to help ourselves feel prepared! Help students develop a plan for:

  • Things they will do to get organized the night before the test (packing their lunch ahead of time, packing their backpacks, laying our clothes)
  • A calming activity they will do the night before the test
  • Going to bed on time
  • Getting up on time
  • How they will get to school and when they will arrive
  • A healthy breakfast they can ask to have or plan to get to school on time for breakfast
  • Something they will say to themselves before the test
    • I am not defined by a test
    • I am more than a score on a test
    • I am a successful person
    • I can persevere
    • I am in control of the things I say to myself

These help kids remember that this test is one tiny thing they have to do and they are so much more than the test! It also reminds them that they have the power to choose the words they use to and about themselves.

Can We Reach You In Case Of Emergency?

It’s important to keep your contact information up to date and opt-in to receive text messages from Maeser — in case of an emergency, this is how we notify parents! In addition, we use your contact information to notify you about important school events and school fees deadlines.

Here’s how to make sure you’re getting all of our important announcements and information:

Opt In For School Text Messages

Our school utilizes the SchoolMessenger system to deliver text messages to your mobile phone with important information about events, school closings, safety alerts, student fees, and more. We will only use text messaging for urgent and important information.

You can participate in this service by sending a text message of “Y” or “Yes” to our school’s short code number, 67587.

You can also opt out of text messages at any time by simply replying to one of our messages with “Stop”.

Update Your Contact Information

If any of your contact information has changed – email address, mailing address, phone number – please let us know asap so we can be sure you’re getting school and teacher communications.

Thank you for helping us keep in contact with your family!