Cat Chat Newsletter - December 2017 


Dear Cienega Families,
I hope all of you had a great Thanksgiving. We are now in the home stretch of our 1st semester. December is the month of finishing strong. Please take the time to go onto Power School and check your child's grades. High school grades are final at the end of each semester, and it is imperative that we push hard to finish strong academically. Please do not hesitate to contact your child's teachers if you need information about what you find on Power School.
December is also a great time to contribute your yearly tax credit. Tax Credit Contributions are a 100% dollar-for-dollar credit. For those that pay Arizona state taxes, for every dollar that is contributed, 100% will be returned back in their state tax return. People that are single can contribute up to $200 per year, and married couples can contribute up to $400 per year. 
Many of our extra-curricular programs at Cienega depend on tax credits to function. Tax credit contributions can be given to any club, sport, fine arts program, activity, or the greatest need. I would like to thank you in advance for contributing your tax credits to any of our programs. Below is our website for tax credit contributions. This website is a much simpler and improved way to make tax credit contributions.
Happy Holidays and please be safe as we move into 2018.

Nemer Hassey



Join us on Monday, December 11th for FAFSA night.  Please RSVP to Cassandra Bahrychuck at 520-879-2874 and pick up your FAFSA Completion Guide. 


Contact Dr. Robin Rathman to purchase your ornaments today!
The 12th Annual Vail Jingle Trail 5k and Santa's Little Helper 1k is on Saturday, December 16th. This event benefits the Cienega Key Club and the Shyann Kindness Project Toy Drive. Last year we raised over 500 toys thanks in part to Meghan McKinney who collects toys from her students! Jeremy Vega and his choir have come out the last couple of years and they will be there again this year.  Thanks to TSW, Be Kind Club, Art Club and Sandi Morrison for the cool finisher awards this year for the first 400 participants. Come on out, we have awesome long sleeve t-shirts for ALL our participants. It's a great "feel good" event. 
Click on the link to download a flier.


We are so thankful for our staff's continuous effort to provide our students with a nurturing environment for learning and growing. Despite of many challenges and hardships, our teachers and staff are always working hard to improve our school. We really appreciate the many hours and effort you have put in to make Cienega a great school.
As 2017 wraps up, CATFRAT wants to celebrate our staff and show them our appreciation. We are hosting a soup & chili luncheon for our staff on Wednesday, December 20.
Please look for an email the first week of December asking for donations of soups, desserts, and refreshments. We are also in need of volunteers to set up, serve, and clean up for the luncheon. We hope you can help us make this a festive celebration!


Testing Information:
  • SAT registration deadline for the March 10th test is February 9th. Go to to register.
  • ACT registration deadline for the February 10th   test is January 12th. Go to to register
SchoolWay App:
  • If you have not yet downloaded the SchoolWay, I highly encourage you to do so. The senior counselor sends push alerts to your Smart phone, or texts or emails if you don't have a SmartPhone. Go to to download the App. Join the Vail School District, then Cienega High School and then the GROUP: Class of 2018, or just enter the WayCode: nd53e4
Financial Aid:
  • Almost every college requires a student to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Any student attending college next year should have filled out this form by now. Use this worksheet to assist you in this process and then go to to complete the form.
  • In order to have the best chances of receiving scholarships or financial aid at any of the state universities, seniors should have already applied to these schools. Do not delay any longer if you have not yet applied. For out of state or private colleges, deadlines vary. Go to the specific college website for deadlines and information.
Attendance Issues:
  • Any student who exceeds eight absences (9 is 9) will not receive credit for that class. If it is a zero hour issue and other classes are not in line with the zero hour absences, a student may be required to drop zero hour and add a class after lunch. Schedule an attendance appeal with Juanita Mari (located in the library) after December 1st to appeal the absence.
Senior Exit Project:
  • Any senior who has not successfully completed the Research paper or the Portfolio this semester will see a new "class" on their schedule in January called "SEP Ineligible" The student will not be eligible to participate in sports or extra- curricular activities until a passing paper and/or a portfolio are submitted.
The Wall of the Future is growing rapidly. Any senior who brings in their acceptance letter to a college or trade school, or a letter of enlistment is publicized on our Wall and is given a College Bound t-shirt and entered in the drawing to win an iPad at Honors Night in May. Cienega Seniors are C2G!


Ever wanted to see a volcano in person? How about relax in a natural hot spring? What about taking a tour of a real coffee plantation? Cienega students now have the opportunity to enroll in a tour to just that and more! We are traveling to Costa Rica during fall break of 2018. Sign up soon as spots are limited and filling quickly. Deadline to enroll is December 15th. Use this link to enroll so you don't miss out on a chance of a lifetime! 

Projects in Construction the class are moving right along, with the expected installation of the restored Section Foreman House windows after the Winter Break. Students have custom cut new siding boards to fit in around the windows.

Students pictured below are pre-priming and painting the new siding.

Construction students are also busy building a playhouse for Vail Pride Day, to serve as a "model home" for taking orders to build and sell playhouses as a fundraisers for the Construction classes to attend Regional and State Construction competitions. The green window frames in the background are for the Section foreman House. 

Are You Ready For Summer?
The year 2017 is almost over. We have not started our winter break yet, and summer seems so far away. But, did you know that this is the perfect time to make plans for the summer? Summer activities help students to enrich their high school résumés. Applications for internships, enrichment and pre-college programs are often due January through March.
Although participation in organized summer programs does not necessarily increase students' chances for getting into specific colleges, these programs provide other unique and valuable opportunities for high school students. Participants may have opportunities to intern with a professional, learn more about colleges and careers, utilize professional labs and other facilities, experience the intricacies of dorm life, and learn to manage their time, all while learning a little more about the real world. These experiences can help solidify students' current aspirations or expose students to careers they not have previously considered.
Caution should to be applied when applying to pre-college and summer enrichment programs. Some programs are very expensive and none guarantee a boost in students' college admission, so researching programs is imperative. A good place to begin is to investigate pre-college and enrichment programs through our three state university websites:
University of Arizona
Arizona State University
Northern Arizona University
To learn more about national programs, students and parents may also consider conducting a general online search of summer programs by typing the following search terms: summer enrichment programs, pre-college programs, summer internships for high school students. 
Dainah L. Graham, M.S., M.Ed. 
College & Career Counselor
Bobcat Scholar Academy
(520) 879-2819

Join our proud FFA sponsors in congratulating these students on their hard work and dedication as they all have been preparing since July. We are competing December 8th at Arizona State University Polytechnic Campus. If the students place 1st they will represent Arizona at the 91st National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana next October.
Food Science and Technology: 1st place team and qualifies for state
Micah Trejo- 1st high individual
Megan Dailey- 2nd high individual
Sam Reece- 3rd high individual
Mackenzie Clark: 5th high individual
Jolee Arnold: 6th high individual

Floriculture : 1st place team and qualifies for state
Jazmen Delgado: 2nd high individual
Nevaeh Grahn: 3rd high individual
Hailey Ellison: 4th high individual
Bella Dicampli: 5th high individual
Sonny Hamm: 2nd place and qualifies for state
Wildlife : 5th place team and qualifies for state
AJ Coles- Troy
JC Wright
Sheyanne Pruett
Cienega FFA Annual Canned Food Drive
Members began collecting non-perishable food items for families in the Vail community November 1st and currently have collected over 200 pounds of food, 7 turkeys and 5 hams. These items were distributed for Thanksgiving or will be given to families for the Winter Holiday season. If anyone would like to participate please contact Mrs. McCrea or speak with Mrs. Burton, our Volunteer Coordinator, in the front office.    

NJROTC Cadets participated at the 2017 "Cooper Cup Challenge" NJROTC Area 11 Field Meet held 2 Dec 2017 at Sahuarita High School.  Our cadets competed against 9 other NJROTC programs from Arizona and Southern California.  The cadets excelled in the physical fitness and academic events and brought home 6 trophies and numerous individual medals.

On Thursday, 16 November 2017, our Vail School District NJROTC program completed our mandated Annual Military Inspection (AMI) at Cienega. School system program support, administration of the program, student mentorship, reports and records, and cadet performance were evaluated. Cadets also participate in a personnel inspection and a Pass-in-Review ceremony.  Our NJROTC program received "Outstanding" in all areas evaluated, the highest grade possible.



Be Kind club is once again collecting donations for the homeless students we have on campus (Youth On Their Own). For the last 6 years we have collected donations (stocking stuffers, gift cards, monetary donations (for gift cards) to provide the Youth On Their Own kids on campus a Christmas stocking full of "fun" stuff... things they normally wouldn't get from the YOTO program. 

This year we have a record 11 (7 boys, 4 girls) students in the program.  I know a lot of us are donating to many different causes this year, these students are our own and it would be great to be able to give them a little Christmas cheer.  Any donations would be appreciated, even if its just a $5 gift card or a fun dollar spot item.  We are looking to collect around $100 for each student.  

Please feel free to email with any questions.  You can give any donations to Ms. McKinney or Mrs. Smith at CHS.  We can also provide you with a receipt for tax purposes if you'd like.  Checks should be made out to CHS Be Kind (memo: YOTO)  

Thanks in advance for your generosity!
CHS Be Kind Club
Sponsors: Meghan McKinney (  and Marian Smith ( )


Senior parents!
Have you ever wanted to recognize your senior for all the great accomplishments they have achieved throughout their academic journey? Consider a senior ad in the back of the 2017-18 yearbook! Create your's today on! Only 10 full pages remain, order today to secure your space.


Linked below is the schedule for Free Tutoring that we have available on our campus throughout this school year.  On this document you will find times, locations and teachers that are available for math and English tutoring.  If you have any questions, please direct them to Eric Tatham, Instructional Support Teacher (520) 879-2864.


Thank you Lexie Taylor, you're an AMAZING student volunteer! She worked EVERY single home football game, wow!!! Thank you!

CATFRAT Popcorn Volunteers - Thank you for your dedication!

Band - snack bar volunteers. Thank YOU!

Thank you CATFRAT volunteer Moms for assisting with our Bobcat Student of Success!
Amy Burton 
Volunteer Coordinator 
(520) 879-2811 



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


Cienega High School


 12/18 Choir Concert
12/20, 21 & 22 Finals  
12/25 - 1/5 Winter Break   
1/15 - No School Martin Luther King
1/17 - NHS Blood Drive
1/20 Winter Formal 



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

Get your YEARBOOK today!


CHS Online Store
Spirit Wear & More!

 Click here for Online Ordering  





Job Openings

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The Vail School District is looking for dynamic, energetic and positive staff members. Please click on the link below for the job descriptions, qualifications, salary guide, and the application process.


Click for job openings here   


Cienega High School

It's that time of year again to pre-order your yearbook.