March 12, 2021
Home of the Falcons!
"We Achieve and Celebrate Educational Excellence"
Falcon Focus
A Message from our Director of Instructional Support

Assessment Updates:
 As many of you may have heard, we are still required to administer the State Assessment this year in-person.  After Spring Break FHUSD students will be taking two state assessments. Please look for the testing schedules to be sent out by your student’s Principal after Spring Break. 
Here is some information about both assessments:
  • The AzSCI test is a pilot test this year and students in grades 5th, 8th and 11th will be administered this assessment. AzSCI is Arizona’s new statewide achievement assessment which measures students’ knowledge in the content area of Science. AzSCI Field Test will be administered statewide between March 22 and April 30, 2021. 
  • The AzM2 is the second statewide test that will be administered to students in grades 3rd-8th grade and 10th grade. The AzM2 state assessment assesses students' knowledge in English Language Arts (ELA), and Mathematics in grades 3-8 and 10th grade. 

You may hear or read from your student’s teachers about Performance Matters. Performance Matters is a K-12 assessment platform used by teachers to create standard based formal and informal assessments for their classroom, grade level or department and district. It also allows teachers to utilize third party assessments such as Beyond Textbooks, which will be used in all FHUSD schools next year for all grade levels K-12. Fountain Hills Middle School is piloting Performance Matters this semester and teachers will be giving students their first benchmark assessments shortly. Teachers will then use the assessment data results to help drive their instruction for the fourth quarter. During the 2021-2022 school year, all FHUSD schools will be using PowerSchool Performance Matters.

Why are we switching assessments? It is more important than ever, to have a clear understanding of students' progress and instructional gaps. Performance Matters analytics ensures that teachers will be able to see trends in the data in order to drive their instruction. The teachers will use this information to reteach and enrich students as needed to help students achieve to the best of their abilities.


Allison Barbor
Director of Instructional Support

McDowell Mountain Elementary School

Dear MMES Falcon Families: 
The end of the third quarter is here and spring break is March 15-19! We will resume school for the fourth quarter on Monday, March 22. Here’s what’s coming up at MMES:
2021-2022 Enrollment and Registration 
Please keep an eye on your emails for Peachjar flyers with updates on 2021-2022 new student enrollment and existing student annual registration. Enrollment and registration are online only through PowerSchool. If you do not currently have an account, please go to the district website at for directions on how to create a parent account.  All returning students must register online by April 16 or we will be unable to assign a teacher for next school year.
Preschool and Kindergarten Drive up Event: Calling all Future Falcons! Join us for a preschool and kindergarten pre-enrollment event on March 25, 2021 from 5:00-6:00 p.m. Families will get to meet the teachers and get more information about enrolling online for the 2021-2022 school year.
Upcoming Events 
  • March 15-19: Spring Break – no school
  • March 22: School resumes after spring break and the fourth quarter begins
  • March 31: AzM2 Spirit Assembly & Trustworthiness awards video
  • April 5-9: AzM2 Spirit Week with dress up days: information coming after Spring Break!
  • April 12-30: AzM2 3rd grade state testing
We love our MMES A+ Falcon Family and Community!

Valerie Dehombreux
McDowell Mountain Elementary School

Fountain Hills Middle School

Happy Spring Break Falcon Families,

Last year at this time, the Markle family was loading up the Kia Sedona getting ready to head out on our annual spring break trip to the great state of Arizona. There were some rumblings about needing to take a few extra after the break to let the COVID 19 virus run its course and then WHAM! Well, you know the rest of the story as it was written the same in most states.

As we get ready to head out on a well-deserved break from school, I have been reflecting on everything Fountain Hills Middle School has accomplished this year. My message to the staff on day one was regardless of what learning mode we were in, who was in school, who was online and what challenges we faced that were beyond our control, “Keep the main thing, the main thing.” We have done a great job of living this every day. We have not reached the finish line just yet, but have set ourselves up for a great Quarter 4.

FHMS important information:
Please check out our list of PBIS Falcon Flyer winners here.

Middle School Girls Basketball is up and running, good luck to the team as they begin their season when we return.

Middle School Boys Basketball will have tryouts on March 22 and 23 at the High School from 4:00 – 5:30.

Registration for electives at the middle school will take place shortly after we return for Quarter 4, more information and course descriptions will come out before registration.

AZM2 testing: These state-mandated tests are going on as scheduled this year. Our official testing schedule will be coming out after spring break, but all students will need to take these assessments and they will need to take them on campus here at Fountain Hills Middle School. Please mark your calendars for April 12-16 as testing dates. As we get closer to these dates we will let option B and Virtual Academy students know where and when to report to FHMS for testing.

I hope everyone has a great week off, you find some time to rest and recharge for the final push. We will be having a PBIS re-boot when we return to school, Respectful, Responsible, Safe and Kind will help lead the way to a great Quarter 4.

In Partnership,

Jeff Markle
Fountain Hills Middle School

Fountain Hills High School

Hello Falcon Families!
As the 3rd quarter comes to end, we want to share some items that will quickly be upon us as we roll into the final quarter of the school year. Additionally, we want to acknowledge some of the positives that have taken place over the past couple of weeks to highlight the tremendous achievements of our staff and students.
In-Person Learning
As the COVID numbers in the state and in our town improve, and as more of us receive the vaccine, we want to encourage all of our students to return for in-person instruction. While we understand that there may be some who feel it would be best to remain home for a bit longer, we would love nothing more than to have all students back on campus and encourage you to do so. There are numerous benefits related to in-person learning and with our mitigation strategies we have in place, we feel confident that all members of our school community will remain safe. If you have any questions or concerns and wish to discuss this with an administrator, please feel free to contact the front office.
AzM2 & AzSCI Field Test in April
The time for state standardized testing is upon us. This year we will be administering the AzM2 to all 10th grade students. Additionally, the AzSCI Field Test will be given to all 11th grade students. All students who will be testing must do so in person at the school. The state is not allowing tests to be administered to students remotely. We will be limiting the amount of students in each room to 13-14 in order to properly distance everyone. We are currently working on finalizing our testing schedule and mitigation strategies. This information will be released once it’s completed.
Winter Sports Teams in the Playoffs!
Congratulations to the Girls Soccer team and Boys Basketball team for reaching the playoffs! The girls soccer team is ranked #4 in the state tournament and opens up tournament play on Wednesday, March 10th at home versus ALA - Gilbert North. Boys basketball is ranked #7 and will also open up at home versus ALA - Gilbert North on March 10th. Additionally, we have multiple wrestlers who have qualified for state. They will begin competition next week.
Best of luck to all our winter sports teams in the playoffs!!!
Key Club Cleans Up Campus!
Major thanks to Mr. Brady, Ms. Green, and members of the Key Club for all their hard work on Saturday, March 6th! The Key Club held a campus cleanup day in order to get rid of unwanted weeds and debris around campus. It was a wonderful site on Monday morning seeing how clean things were around campus because of all their hard work! In total, 25 students participated and were able to earn community service hours for their efforts. Thanks again Key Club for all your efforts!
Falcons Nest Complete!
Shout out to our amazing Athletic Booster Club for all of their hard work in completing the new Falcons Nest! The Falcons Nest is a room built and designed for our student-athletes and athletic programs that will provide a space for team meetings, watching film, and pre-game preparation. To celebrate the completion of the space, we will be hosting a dedication ceremony on Thursday, March 25th at 3:30pm for our coaches, athletes, boosters, and community members. Afterwards, there will be a post-dedication celebration at Phil’s here in town for anyone wanting to join. We look forward to seeing you all there on the 25th!
Course Registration Going On Now!
Our counseling team began the course registration process with students a few weeks ago. They’ve been in and out of the English classrooms visiting with students in the various grade levels discussing the course offerings for next year. Students will be asked to have their course selections entered and finalized prior to spring break. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to your child’s respective counselor, Mr. Love (9th & 11th) or Mr. Brady (10th & 12th)
Attention National Honor Society Hopefuls:
Letters were mailed on Friday, January 29th to students in 10th and 11th grade with a Cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher. If you receive a letter, you may fill out an application to join NHS for the next school year. If you did not receive a letter and feel this is an error please contact Cristine Barsema at 480-664-5551 or You may pick up the application in the high school front office or print it out online. There is a link on the FHHS website in the Latest News feed. Applications are due Friday March 12, 2021.
NHS Virtual Homework Hub
Our wonderful NHS students will continue to host a virtual homework hub for any students needing academic tutoring.
  • Tutors are available Mondays and Thursdays from 2:30-3:15 and Wednesdays from 11:00-11:40.
  • This is the link to access the homework hub virtually:

Kris Alexander
Fountain Hills High School

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