Excellence is at the heart of Maricopa High School

Posted at 7:27 AM, Aug 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-24 13:05:04-04

Maricopa Economic Development Alliance is a paid sponsor of Sonoran Living

Excellence is at the Heart of Maricopa High School as the New School Year Begins

Excitement is in the air as another school year begins. But nowhere is it more fervent than in the City of Maricopa, where Maricopa High School delivers a 360-degree educational experience to prepare students for a lifetime of learning. 

After a banner year that included graduating the largest class ever, milestone accomplishments, and incredible private-public community partnerships, Maricopa High School's teachers, staff and students are eager to get back to work and make this the best year yet. 

"Academic excellence is at the center of every learning opportunity at Maricopa High School, but we consistently look for ways to take students' experiences to the next level," said Dr. Steve Chestnut, superintendent of Maricopa Unified School District. "This includes providing blended-learning opportunities and extracurricular activities that go beyond the classroom to put students on a path for success."

The strength of the school's academic and extracurricular activities is a testament to the exceptional partnerships that the school district has established with local businesses to benefit students. This includes:  

· An Adopt-A-School program that enlists the experience and skills of local business people to assist students in understanding more about the "work world"; 

· A $100,000 grant from the Ak-Chin Indian Community that allowed the school to purchase new uniforms for the award-winning marching band, expand the band's instrument inventory, and further grow music programs; 

· A $75,000 grant from the Gila River Indian Community to also support the band program; and

· Support from Intel, which has ensured that the Maricopa school district has the latest equipment for its elementary, middle school, and high school robotics teams.  

"The support of our community is vital to our success," said Dr. Chestnut. "It truly does take a village, and we are so proud to be in the City of Maricopa, where everyone understands that we're all working together to raise the next generation of leaders."

Last year, City of Maricopa residents voted for a 10 percent, seven-year budget override for the District, which is providing funding for 50 additional teachers, counselors and specialists, as well as enhanced technology for students, which will contribute to lower class sizes and more resources for students.

"Together, we're empowering our students to reach higher and achieve more than they ever thought possible," said Dr. Chestnut. "Last year's graduating class is proof that our formula for success is working."

In April 2017, Maricopa High School graduated its largest class ever, with more than 380 students accepting diplomas. The senior class earned $6.74 million in scholarships, the highest amount ever garnered by a graduating class at the school. In the past five years, three students have landed prestigious National Merit Scholarships. 

"As a community, we should be incredibly proud of our Maricopa students' accomplishments, as these graduates are poised to become the next generation of leaders in engineering, robotics, technology, the sciences, education, healthcare and the arts," said City of Maricopa Mayor Christian Price.

Preparation, along with a forward-focused education approach, is key. Academically, the school offers students 11 high school Advanced Placement classes and four different Central Arizona College dual enrollment classes. Last year, the district was one of only three public school districts in the state on the Advanced Placement Honor Roll, which is awarded by the College Board. As well, the school's unique partnership with Central Arizona College allows students who perform 20 hours of community service and graduate with a cumulative 2.75 grade point average or above, to attend the community college for two years for free. 

"We're also earning top marks across Arizona," said Dr. Chestnut. "Our school is very well-known for its award-winning robotics program, and students have brought home a lot of hardware from the last regional DECA competition, which helps to prepare future leaders."

And beyond academics, students have access to a variety of extra-curricular opportunities to help make them more well-rounded. In addition to the marching band, the school's theater program presents two eagerly-anticipated musicals each year, and the theater students perform in competitions for college drama scholarships. Last year, three seniors received scholarship offers. 

"Everything that we offer at our schools helps to transform our students into well-prepared, college-ready individuals who can have successful and fulfilling careers," said Dr. Chestnut. 

Maricopa Economic Development Alliance is a paid sponsor of Sonoran Living