Maeser Updates: 29 March 2024

In This Edition

Congratulations to our Maeser Math Team!, Assessment Announcements (2024 State Testing Schedule for Students in 7th-10th Grades), 24-25 Student Council Elections, Time-Sensitive Graduation Information for the Class of 2024 (Caps & Gowns, Graduation Clearance), 2024-2025 Academic Calendar, 2024-25 Fee Schedule & Spend Plan: Public Comment Period Open, Toast: A Tribute to Bread – Benefit Concert Sponsorship, UVU Brain Fair, Volunteer Help Needed (Gift Cards for Teachers, Lunch Volunteers, Teacher Appreciation Donations, Report Your Volunteer Hours, Questions About Volunteer Hours), Sports Announcements (Spring Sports Academic Eligibility, Sports Physicals for 2024-25), Counseling Announcements (Counseling Donations), Can We Reach You In Case Of Emergency? (Opt In For School Text Messages, Update Your Contact Information)

Front Office Hours This Week

CLOSED for Spring Break

**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, March 29
Required On-Campus Advisory Friday

April 1-5
Spring Break – NO SCHOOL

Wednesday, April 10
Utah Aspire Plus Testing – Freshmen & Sophomores ONLY on campus

NO SCHOOL for students in grades 7, 8, 11, 12

Monday, April 15
24-25 Student Council interest meeting in room 146 during lunch

April 15-May 2
RISE Testing in 7th & 8th Grade Classes

Friday, April 19
12pm Dancing With The Teachers

May 6-17
AP exams

Congratulations, Maeser Math Team!

Three members of the Maeser Math Counts Team clinched the top three positions in the Central UT Mathcounts chapter, earning them a spot in the State Mathcounts competition at Salt Lake Community College. Building on their outstanding performance, Ishant Batra earned 12th in the state contest, Luke Pratt secured 9th place overall, while Tanish Shetty claimed 2nd place in the state. Tanish’s remarkable achievement qualified him to represent Utah as part of a four-member team at the national Mathcounts championship in Washington, DC. This accomplishment is truly a source of pride for the entire Maeser community.

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.

9th and 10th Grades: Utah Aspire Plus – Wednesday, April 10
Fixed-form high school assessment with subtests in Reading, English, Math, and Science; provides students with a predictive score for the ACT

8th Grade: RISE – April 15-May 2
Multistage adaptive summative tests in English, Math, Science and Writing

7th Grade: RISE – April 15-May 2
Multistage adaptive summative tests in English, Math, and Science

2024 State Testing Schedule for Students in 7th-10th Grades

9th and 10th grade students will take the Utah Aspire Plus on Wednesday, April 10 (the Wednesday after Spring Break).

This is a special testing day for students in 9th & 10th grades — only students taking Utah Aspire Plus are allowed on campus on Wednesday, April 10. Please make arrangements for your students in other grades, as we will not have space or supervision for them on campus.

Middle school students will take their RISE tests in class beginning Monday, April 15.

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

9th and 10th Grades: Utah Aspire Plus

The Utah Aspire Plus is a hybrid of the ACT Aspire and test items covering Utah standards. This is a computer delivered, fixed-form high school assessment for students in grades 9 and 10. The test includes subtests for Reading, English, Math, and Science. The tests will provide students a predictive score for the ACT, which is taken by all Utah 11th grade students and is the most commonly submitted college readiness assessment for local universities.

What is Utah Aspire Plus?
Utah Aspire Plus is a hybrid between ACT Aspire and assessment items covering Utah’s 9th and 10th grade standards in English, Math, Reading, and Science.

Will the test be administered in one sitting, like the ACT?
USBE left this up to local schools and districts to decide. Maeser has elected to offer Utah Aspire Plus in one sitting, to help students practice in a setting similar to taking the ACT. Because Utah Aspire Plus is slightly longer than the ACT, students will have a 30-minute lunch break before the Science subtest. Testing will end at approximately 1:30pm for most students.

Will Utah Aspire Plus be timed?
Yes, Utah Aspire Plus is a timed test – practice taking exams under timed conditions helps prepare students for success on timed high-stakes tests like the ACT.

Is Utah Aspire Plus computer-adaptive like RISE?
No. While the text will be taken online like RISE, Utah Aspire Plus is a fixed-form test like ACT.

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.

What kind of score report will my student receive?
Utah Aspire Plus score reports are very similar to the report provided by ACT for the ACT Aspire, including a predictive ACT score.

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 test day does not excuse the student from state testing. We will be pulling students out of class in April and May for make-up 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 or Utah Aspire Plus?
While we hope you will allow your student to participate in RISE and Utah Aspire Plus – both to receive feedback on areas your student can improve 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 24 hours prior to the test date helps us ensure that your student does not access the test and is not scheduled for make-up testing.

24-25 Student Council Elections

All students interested in running for the 2024-2025 Student Council should plan to attend the information meeting on Monday, April 15th, during lunch in room 146.

Time-Sensitive Graduation Information for the Class of 2024

Caps & Gowns

Is your student a senior? Have they ordered their cap and gown? Time is running out! If you haven’t ordered yet, go to www.jostens.comto order in time to receive the cap and gown before graduation. Deadline to order without rush fees is April 10.

Graduation Clearance

If your student has an NG in any class, even past terms and years, they need to make it up before April 15 in order for Ms. Sorenson to clear them for graduation.

Is your senior missing credit, whether from an F grade or a class they are taking online? These need to be made up by April 15 as well or they will not be cleared for graduation.

2024-2025 Academic Calendar

Our 2024-2025 school calendar has been approved and is posted on our website under the Parents drop-down menu. Please be aware that Orientation day for all incoming and new students is Friday, August 9. School starts for everyone on Monday, August 12 and our last day of school (graduation) will be May 23, 2025.

We realize this start date is early! By aligning our calendar closely with the Alpine School District, families with students at Maeser and at district schools are better able to coordinate their schedules.

2024-25 Fee Schedule & Spend Plan: Public Comment Period Open

The 2024-25 Fee Schedule & Spend Plan is now available for review and public comment. This document details any and all fees that can be charged to students next school year. If you would like to share any feedback with the board before their final approval of the 2024-25 Fee Schedule & Spend Plan on April 9, you may either:

  • Email before Tuesday, April 2, OR
  • Request to speak during the public comment period of the March 12 or April 9 board meetings. These meetings are held online. Please contact if you would like instructions for joining the meeting.

Toast: A Tribute to Bread – Benefit Concert Sponsorship

TOAST- The Ultimate Bread Experience will be holding a benefit concert for the Maeser auditorium building fund on May 18 at the UVU Noorda Center for the Performing Arts. We are looking for sponsors to help cover our basic costs for the event. If you are interested, please contact Laura Ure at

Tickets are on sale now! More information on the concert can be found at the following link:

UVU Brain Fair

Maeser students and parents:
You are invited to attend UVU’s annual brain fair on Saturday, April 6th from 10am-12pm at Utah Valley University in the Liberal Arts (LA) building hallway.

The fair will provide an opportunity for students of all ages to learn about the brain, neurons, and our senses through various activity stations set up by UVU undergraduate students under psychology faculty mentorship. This is a great opportunity for parents to engage their students in science education and expand their knowledge about the human brain.

For more information: UVU Brain Fair.

Volunteer Opportunities

Gift Cards for Teachers

Thank you for your support this year. Your generosity with bringing in food and helping with various needs has been overwhelming. Thank you!

At this time, we are asking for gift cards to give to teachers when they want to purchase items (including food) for various class activities, and for the administration to give to teachers for a pat on the back and a token of appreciation. If you’re inclined please review the available slots and click on the button to sign up: Gift Cards for Teachers.

Lunch Volunteers

Do you need to get your volunteer hours? We need help selling and serving lunch every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 11:15-12:00pm. To sign up to help please email Jared Norris at

Teacher Appreciation Donations

Thank you to those who have donated treats and goodies the past few months. We would like to resupply the faculty lounge with a variety of treats/drinks. The following link has an updated signupgenius that has a variety of items listed that are popular with the staff, but is not limited to those items only. If you can help, please visit the following link to sign up (can be used for volunteer hours!): Help Provide Teacher Treats. Thank you for your generosity!

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 4th term sports/activities will be determined by 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 for 2024-25

All students, middle school and high school, who will be playing sports next year (2024-25) need a physical in order to play. Physicals completed on or after March 10, 2024 are good until July 15, 2025. Any physicals completed before March 10 of this year will not be accepted (per UHSAA policy) for the upcoming school year.

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

Counseling Announcements

Counseling Donations

The 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 Needed: 4-5 bags/month

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!