Cat Chat Newsletter - April 2017 

Dear Cienega Families,
It is amazing that we are now in our final weeks of the school year. It's the time of year to encourage all of our students to have a laser focus on academics, attendance, and behavior. After working so hard for the last seven months, we all must "finish the race" with success. You can support your child by looking at their progress on PowerSchool and by contacting teachers to help with this process. Tutoring and reteach are still going on almost everyday, classroom instruction is going strong, and finals are just around the corner. We don't slow down until the very last day of school.
I am so excited for our seniors and their future endeavors as they prepare to graduate from Cienega. It will be very busy in the final months of the school year. SEP presentations are scheduled on May 3-5, 2017. This can be a very stressful time for our seniors as they are checking off the final boxes and thinking about what comes next. Please assist your senior in their final weeks as a Cienega student.
Mark your calendars: Here are some events that are coming up in the final weeks.
  • April 13 th TODAY @ 5:00 p.m. {All Fine Arts Department Show Extravaganza}
  • April 22nd @ 10:30 a.m. {Annual Golf Tournament Fundraiser at Del Lago)
  • April 24th @ 7:00 p.m. {Band Concert at VTOTA}
  • April 27th @ 6:00 p.m. {NJROTC Awards Night}
  • May 1st @ 7:00 p.m. {Band Concert at VTOTA}
  • May 3-5 {SEP Presentations}
  • May 6th {Prom at JW Marriott Starr Pass - Arizona Ballroom}
  • May 15th @ 7:00 p.m. {Choir Concert}
  • May 17th @ 6:30 p.m. {Honors Night}
  • May 19th @ 5:00 p.m. {Powder Puff Football}
  • May 19th @ 7:00 p.m. {Baccalaureate}
  • May 20th @ 7:00 p.m. {Graduation at the TCC}
I appreciate the hard work and dedication of our teachers, staff, students, and our parents.

Nemer Hassey
Fine Arts
Boys Volleyball Fundraiser
Bobcat Scholar Academy
Bookstore Info
Senior Information
STUCO Happenings
Galapagos Wrap Up
College & Career Chronicle
Spring Break Trip 2018
Yearbook Info
Testing Corner
ACT Prep Bootcamp
Volunteer Corner
Phat Cat Winners


Come see the Fine Art Extravaganza.  TODAY, April 13th from  5:00 - 6:30 pm  the Fine Art Department will be  presenting the work of CHS's Fine Art Students.  There will be Band, Choir, and Drama performances - as well as an Art Show in the 200 hallway showcasing our new display cases and many fine drawings, paintings, and sculptures.  Hors d'oeuvres will be served in the 200 hallway after the performances during the art show.  Please come and support our many talented students. Shown below are just a sampling of the artwork that will be on display. Come support the CHS Fine Arts Program.


Do you like your Orange Chicken with a side of Volleyball? Come support Cienega Boys Volleyball on April 19th from 10 am-11pm at Panda Express on Houghton Rd. Bring friends and family all day to support us! Come see Ms. Koontz, stop by the100 or 400 office for a flier or download the attached.


Save the Date:
The Cienega High School
Bobcat Scholar Academy (Cohort 2020)
will host its 1st Annual
Bobcat Scholar Academy Awards Night
Thursday, May 11th 6:30 PM - 7:30 PM
Our first cohort of Bobcat Scholars will be receiving honors for academics and other attributes. More information will follow soon.


Parents, now is the time to check your student's account in the Bookstore to be certain they have paid all outstanding class fees, parking fines, Grad Lab course fees, etc.  Seniors may check the lists that are posted on the whiteboard.
Freshmen, Sophomores and Juniors may stop in the bookstore to check their accounts.  
 There are 2 new items for purchase in the bookstore! There are Cienega logo window decals (available in Navy or White) that re selling for $3 each. Also, we all know how bright Cienega students are, so why not protect yourself with some stylish Cienega sunglasses for the low price of $10 each?! Get them while they last!

The bookstore is open from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm Monday thru Friday.  You may also call us at 879-2824 or 879-1819 or  email or .

On Thursday 6 April 2017 the NJROTC program completed their Annual Military Inspection.  The inspection is mandated by Naval Service Training Command and the NJROTC Area Eleven Manager.   Major areas evaluated during the inspection included school system program support, administration of the program, student mentorship, reports and records, and cadet performance.  Our NJROTC program received "Outstanding" in all areas, the highest grade possible.

On Saturday 1 April 2017 NJROTC Cadets presented the Colors for the 1st Annual UDT-SEAL Association Tucson Charity Desert Golf Classic held at the Arizona National Golf Course.  The UDT-SEAL Association is a Non-profit Veteran Service Organization whose members are made up of U.S. Navy personnel who have served, or are presently serving in the Naval Special Warfare community.  Our cadets had the unique opportunity to meet Astronaut, and retired U.S. Navy Captain, Mark Kelly.  He was a guest of the event.

Graduation Reminders
  • Ceremony is Saturday, May 20th at 7:00 PM at the Tucson Convention Center.If you missed the informational meeting on April 4th, here is the link to the presentation. And here is the link to the Powerpoint.
  • Graduation Rehearsal is Friday May 19th at 8:40 AM in the CHS gymnasium. Attendance is mandatory for all students who will be in the ceremony.
  • Honors Night for Seniors is Wednesday, May 17th. I will be handing out honor cords to those who are graduating with honors. I will be recognizing every student who is on the Wall of the Future and I will be presenting certificates to everyone who has received any scholarship. I would like to recognize everyone who has received a scholarship, but in order to do so, I need to know what honors or awards your son or daughter has earned. Forms are available outside of Mr. Tritz's office and available on the counselor link of the CHS website.
  • Have your senior bring in their acceptance letters or enlistment papers to be added to the Wall of the future. Every time a student's name is on the wall, they are entered in the drawing for a free iPad to be given away at Honors night. Student must be present to win.
  • National Signing Day celebration: On April 28th during PAWS there will be a national signing day celebration in the student union. An ice cream social sponsored by STUCO will be given to celebrate their Commitment to their future. We encourage all students to wear college or military attire to where they will be going after graduation.
  • Senior Parade: On May 12th at 8:45 AM we will have 3 busses available for students to celebrate their graduation by going back to the middle schools and elementary schools in a parade style fashion. Seniors will wear their cap and gown and students from the elementary and middle schools will line the sidewalks of their schools as our seniors parade around the campus while the band plays Pomp and Circumstance. Students can sign up at the front desk.
General Reminders
  • If your student is taking any courses through correspondence or Dual Enrollment through Pima, it is their responsibility to bring the transcript from that school to the registrar in order to get credit for the class and to be able to participate in graduation ceremonies. This deadline is MAY 1st unless taking a Pima class. That deadline will be two days after the class has been completed.
  • If nine absences are accumulated in any class regardless of the reason, unless it is a school related activity, the student will not pass the class and if the class is a required class for graduation, the student will not graduate.
    • Attendance appeals can be scheduled beginning May 1st with Juanita Mari (located in the library.)
  • Seniors planning on attending a four-year college should have applied to their schools by now.  You may lose valuable scholarship opportunities by procrastinating any longer.
  • Be sure to check the CHS Website for updated scholarship opportunities. Click on the "Counselor" link, from there click on "Scholarships". This page is updated regularly, so check back often.
  • Senioritis can sometimes creep up on students.  Please be aware of this and monitor your students attendance and grades carefully so that there will be no unhappy surprises in May when it is time to celebrate the graduation of your son or daughter from Cienega.
  • Please utilize PowerSchool on a regular basis and stay informed of the progress your son or daughter is making in his or her classes .




Spring break 2017 was NOT business as usual.  Four teachers from Cienega and one from Empire led a group of 34 people on a journey that included 7 flights, 3 two-hour boat rides, 1 ferry, and numerous bus rides throughout Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands.  This trip was a life-long dream of many, and it did not disappoint.  The trip was bookended by cultural experiences in mainland Ecuador including a tour of Independence Plaza and the Intinan Museum that straddled the equator.   

Upon arriving in the Galapagos on Baltra Islands, many students thought we arrived back in Tucson as it's barren and harsh landscape is iconic for several of the islands.  Upon arriving in Isabela Island, students encountered marine iguana and sea lions several just feet away.  


How to be the "Squeaky Wheel"
Have you ever heard the following statement, "The squeaky wheel gets the oil"? It means the person who makes some noise is the person who often attracts attention and service. If you really want to go to college, you need to let everyone you know that you are going to college and you need their help. Networking will help you achieve your goals in every aspect of your life and high school is the perfect time to learn how to network.
  • Enlist your supporters. Ask your counselors, teachers, club leaders and coaches for advice on college and careers - it is their job and they want to help you succeed.
  • Put yourself out there. Look for places outside of school where you can get experience from adults - job shadow, volunteer, conduct informational interviews, participate in summer pre-college activities and camps, become an intern.
  • Get help from family members. Even if your parents did not attend college, they have real-world experience. They may know people they can connect you to who can help you on your path to college.
  • Connect yourself to others. There are many people around you (friends, neighbors, family) who have been to college. Ask them about their experience. How did they get there, manage classes and finances, and graduate?
  • Toot your own horn. Let others know if you have a particular interest, talent or gift. Letting others know what you're into doesn't mean you're bragging.
  • Create an internal dialogue. Don't talk yourself out of your goals. Believe that this is something you are worthy of achieving.
Your counselors, teachers and coaches are constantly receiving information about colleges, scholarships, summer programs, internships, and a host of other valuable opportunities. These adults often first share their information with students with whom they have made a personal connection. For example, if they receive information about a scholarship opportunity for marine biology, aeronautics, or animation, they will contact you if they know you have an interest in one of those majors. So, if you have a particular interest or goal let the adults in your life know, because in many cases they can help or they know someone else who can help. Don't be afraid to be that squeaky wheel!
More Summer Opportunities for 2017
Tonto Creek Camp - is currently offering full scholarships to the two sessions of the 2017 Aspiring Youth Academy CAMP (summer entrepreneurship camp, sponsored by the Phoenix 20/30 Club and ASU) Contact: Chris Piccirillo 
Camp Cardiac & Camp Neuro - a 1-week summer day camp open to high school students interested in exploring careers in medicine at University of Arizona College of Medicine. Scholarship and applications are currently open for Camp Cardiac - Tucson.  
Duke Summer Academy for High School Students provides a stimulating and thought-provoking learning experience that will help you understand what it means to be a global citizen.  Contact: Nicki Charles 
Dainah L. Graham
College & Career Counselor
Bobcat Scholars Academy
(520) 879-2819


Contact Ciria Roddick at if you are interested.



Attention Junior Parents!   
The SEP Junior Parent Night is being held April 19th from 6:00-7:00pm in the Student Union.  This is for all junior parents who will have seniors attending Cienega the following year.  During this hour, Mr. Tatham and Mrs. Matsushino will give an overview of the three components that make up the Senior Exit Project and deadlines for summer shadowing.  Documents will be handed out, but if you cannot attend, the junior English teachers will have them following the meeting.
Sign up for the SAT!
If you are interested in taking the SAT, it will be hosted at Cienega on Saturday, June 3rd.  For help registering, go to 
Testing Corner
Parents please aim to make sure that your student is present at school for the following important testing dates:  

  • State Mandatory EOC (End of Course) test
  • Will take place in the corresponding classes with SPED students in the Library.  
  • April 10th/11th Writing
  • April 12th/13th Reading Part 1 & Writing Make up (in library after they finish Reading Part 1)
  • April 17th/18th Reading Part 2 & Writing Make up (in library after they finish Reading Part 1)
  • April 20th/21st Writing Make up in the library (ALL Writing tests must be done by 21st)
  • April 24th/25th AZMerit Math Part 1
  • April 26th/27th AZMerit Math Part 2
  • May 1st - 3rd AZMerit Reading Part 1 & 2 AND Math Part 1 & 2 Make ups
April 19th- Bring PHOTO ID!!!- 2/4/6 Day-Juniors excused from 2/4


Attention Cienega Parents:

All juniors on our campus will be taking the important ACT college entrance exam on April 19th.  This test helps students to qualify for college academic scholarship money.  According to, "A high ACT score can open doors [for scholarship money]" and "t he test is not an indication of how intelligent a student might be. It is a test designed to see how well-rounded the student is and how well the student can apply himself or herself to a college setting.  
Since research shows that students that prepare for this important test tend to increase their score by 2-3 points, Cienega is offering an ACT Bootcamp on Saturday, April 15th.  The class will run in the Cienega library from 9am to 1pm.  The cost is $25.  Please contact Eric Tatham for more information at 879-2864.

Summer is in the air and SEP presentations are almost here. Please consider volunteering for one or more days. No experience necessary, just a willing and positive attitude! Please call or email me at the contact info below. if you would like to judge our SEP's or if you would like more information about judging Cienega's SEP's. Thank you for your consideration, this is an amazing time for our current senior class. Thank you for being a part of their journey! 
SEP dates and times are: 
Wednesday, May 3rd - 3:45pm-7:30pm
Thursday, May 4th - 3:45pm-7:30pm
Friday, May 5th - 1:00pm-4:30pm - (1/2 day of school)  
CatFrat, Cienega's parent teacher organization needs your help finalizing the end of year Teacher Appreciation. In order to complete this goal and recognize our hard working and dedicated teachers, CatFrat is asking for monetary donations or gift card donations to Fry's, Safeway, Walmart, Target or Costco to purchase the remaining items needed for their appreciation gifts. Any donations can be dropped off in the schools front office, by next TUESDAY, APRIL 18th, between 8am-4pm. Please label it "CatFrat" or to the attention of Amy Burton, Volunteer Coordinator. Thank you for your consideration and generous support of our teachers!

Please contact Amy Burton at (520) 879-2811 or to volunteer. Thank you for your consideration! We LOVE our CHS Volunteers!!!  


Congratulations to Cameron Dippold who was the Phat Cat winner on Friday, March 10th. Cameron one a free pizza for a year from Pizza Hut. Congrats Cameron!

Congratulations to the following students who won the Phat Cat Prizes on Friday, April 7 th:
Rachel Olvera - Great Waves Salon Spa Day
Francisco Duarte - Men's Wearhouse Free Tuxedo Rental
Nathaniel Spiller - Nick's Menswear Free Suit/Tuxedo




Thank you, parents, for your support of Cienega. We truly appreciate your involvement! 


Cienega High School


4/13 - Fine Arts Extravanganza

4/14 - No School

4/20 - SEP Junior Parent Meeting

4/22 CHS Golf Tournament

4/24 - Orchestra and Jazz Band Concert at VTOTA

5/1 - Band Concert at VTOTA

5/1-5/12 - AP Exams

5/3 - 5/5 - SEP Presentations

5/5 Half Day

5/6 - Junior/Senior Prom

5/15 - Choir Concert

5/17 Honors Night

5/19 Baccalaureate

5/20 Class of 2017 Graduation @ TCC




Cienega High School
Vision Statement
Cienega High School creates an educational environment utilizing partnerships among community, parents, and staff to assist students in maximizing their academic potential and promoting life-long learning.
Front Office   - 879-2800     Attendance   -  879-2803   
Bookstore     -  879-2824 
Registrar       - 879-2812

Health Office - 879-2810
Volunteer Coordinator

Front Office/200 House   
Nemer Hassey
Secretary - Chris Rich 879-2816 
Senior Counselor
John Tritz - 879-1843 
Bobcat Scholars Counselor
Dainah Graham - 879-2819
300/700 House
Assistant Principal
Dean Nourse

Secretary - Kim Thielke 879-2855
Freshman Counselor
Eric Boxley - 879-2854

400/600 House/Athletics     
Assistant Principal
Kelly Hadden
Athletic Director - Whitney Holland - 879-1813            

Secretary -  Sandi Morrison
Counselor A - L
Colette Alvarado 879-2904

500 House/Special Education/Security          
Assistant Principal
Kim Middleton
Secretary - Cassandra Bahrychuk 879-2874

Counselor M - Z
Sylvia Lewandowski-879-2817

Special Education Secretary Patty McKnight 879-1804
Communications Coordinator
Elizabeth Taggart - 879-2878  
CHS website:               


Silhouette Photography - 886-1710  (Senior pictures for yearbook)
Sodexho - 879-2090 or   

District Office - 879-2000

Transportation - 879-2475

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CHS Online Store
Spirit Wear & More!

 Click here for Online Ordering  





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Cienega High School

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