MHS Parent Newsletter
September 2020
From the Botts Office
Here we are getting ready to flip the calendar to October and as of the time of this note, students have only physically been in school for six days. With all of the preparation that went into planning for how to best teach our students, it does seem like we’ve been at this for longer than six days. My initial thoughts and observations of our current situation see many positives and always ideas for growth. Our students have been amazing. They are doing what is asked with wearing masks, taking temperature checks, maintaining social distancing as best as possible, and seem genuinely happy to be back at school. It is my sincerest hope that we can add days to our in-person learning experiences. I am also really proud of my teachers and staff members. Maize teachers have always been hard workers, but they have taken their teaching to a whole new level. They continue to reflect, adjust, and pivot to best meet the needs of our learners. As our teachers and students continue to assimilate to the hybrid model, please help encourage, offer grace, provide feedback, and remain positive to both. More than ever before, I am proud to be a Maize Eagle. Thank you for your continued support!

News and Notes
  • School portraits will take place on Thursday, October 8th and Friday, October 9th. Even if students do not purchase school pictures, we want them to take a picture for their student ID and yearbook picture. Students can choose to wear their mask but are also permitted to remove their mask for their picture.  

  • Congratulations to our three National Merit Scholarship Award winners. Semifinalists: Noah Hale and Jeannine Lopez have been awarded National Merit Semifinalists and Matthew Barnard was a National Commended Student.  

  • During the week of 9/28/20, the Maize High administrative team will meet with all students. As part of the meeting, we will work to offer encouragement, offer time management ideas, and let them know they are appreciated.

  • Congratulations to Maize High School on being recognized as a Civic Advocacy Network Award winner. Thanks to all of our students and community organizations for allowing our students the opportunity to help serve others. While COVID has diminished many of our opportunities, we will continue to look for ways to serve our community.  

  • While our school district continues the hybrid model, we will continue to do check-ins with our EnCor students on the days when our students are remote. Personally speaking, I have really enjoyed getting to know my EnCor students and look forward to seeing them each day. Thank you for any help you can provide in reminding students to virtually attend their 10:45 Zoom call on remote learning days.  

  • One of the biggest struggles our students are having right now is with organization. One of our teachers, Jill Weber, recently wrote a blog about time management and organization. You can find it here. 

  • Graduate Spotlight- Taylor Bugbee (‘19) has recently been published for her work studying at Kansas State University. Her study investigated the HPV virus and how it affects DNA.  You can read her research here 

  • We will recognize our students of the month in the November newsletter. 

With Eagle pride,

Dr. Botts
Important Information
Fair warning from Officer Dover:

The construction of the intersection at 45th and 119th has been completed, however, the building construction has not been completed. Due to the ongoing construction, the speed zones have been changed. 45th in front of the high school, 119th northbound as you approach the 45th and 119th southbound from Academy have all been changed to 30 mph. This is also a construction zone so all ticket fines will be doubled. Example. You find yourself traveling at 45 mph on 119th like you have been used to doing (and was the old speed limit) would result in a ticket of over $200. I hope you all are excited to come back to school and I would hate to see you get ticketed, so please pay close attention. This construction zone will be strictly enforced. 
Counselor's Corner
Greetings from the Counseling Department at 
Maize High School!


October 14th - Maize High School will be an official testing site for the PSAT this fall. Registration test space is limited and will be on a first come, first serve basis. The link to register was emailed to parents and students in late September. Registration costs $17 and should be paid to Alysia Buckely in the Finance Office, beginning September 28th and ending October 9th. A student’s registration will not be considered final until payment has been made. Register by completing the PSAT Registration Form.


ASVAB stands for Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery, which is a multiple-choice test that helps students identify which Army jobs (Military Occupational Specialities) would be best suited for them. October 23rd, MHS Lecture Hall @ 7:40 am. There is no charge for this assessment. An email with instructions on how to register will be sent to the students’ email October 5th or you may register by completing the ASVAB Registration Form.  


Due to Covid, the ACT organization is offering a variety of test dates and locations in October. For the most up to date information, please visit www.act.org. Students may register to take the ACT at a location other than their current high school.  

Friday, November 6th is the last day to sign up for the December 12th ACT test. If a student is college bound, we recommend that juniors take the ACT at least once their junior year and once again at the beginning of their senior year. High-achieving sophomores may want to take it for practice. Students can take the ACT as many times as they like. 50% of students will improve taking the ACT the second time. Students may want to take it again to improve their last score. If you would like to take the ACT, please register at www.actstudent.org. Students will make an account with a username and password. They will need to know our school code which is 171-885 and the MHS Test Center Code is 213970.

Senior Parents: It is important to take the ACT test, December or before, if a student is going to attend a Regents college or an out of state college so scores can be sent for scholarships. Regents schools are University of Kansas, Kansas State University, Wichita State University, Emporia State University, Fort Hays State University, and Pittsburg State University.
Juniors Parents: This year Maize will give the ACT, free of charge, during the school day on February 23rd, 2021. Students DO NOT need to register for this test. Maize High School will complete all necessary arrangements.
If you have any questions, please contact your counselor.


1. There are four sections on the ACT (English, math, reading, and science) and then a separate optional essay section. The “science” section is really just reading comprehension (no outside science knowledge is needed; all questions can be answered by understanding the given information.) 

2. Answer every question on the ACT even if it is just a guess; there is no penalty for wrong answers. 

3. On the ACT, finishing all of the questions in time is difficult. The ACT rewards working quickly so students should push themselves to move quickly through each section. For example, if you are 90% sure about a question, answer it and move on rather than going back and double checking. 

4. Again, you don't want your score to be lower due to the fact that you were not able to finish most of the questions in time. The best way to deal with this issue is to time yourself as you complete a few practice ACTs before the actual test. Get used to how much time a section lasts and how quickly you need to work to finish it. 

5. The national average for the ACT is approximately 21. This is the approximate national average for the overall score for each section. 

6. Do not read the reading passages for too long. Only take between one and two minutes to read the long passages quickly. Just read enough to get a main understanding of the arguments or points the author is making. Once you get to the questions, you will be going back to the passages anyway to search for the right answer, so it doesn't make sense to read for too long. 

7. Many students are curious as to how many questions they need to answer correctly on each section to earn a certain score. Here is one example: To earn an overall ACT score of 24, a student would need to get 55 out of 75 English questions correct, 37 out of 60 math questions correct, 26 out of 40 reading questions correct, and 29 out of 40 science questions correct. 

8. Many students are curious about how the ACT and SAT compare to each other and here are some general thoughts. Most students find the ACT slightly easier and get a higher percentage of ACT questions correct. The downside is that the curve on the ACT is tougher so a student needs to get a higher percentage of ACT questions correct to earn a score that would be equal to the comparable SAT score. One of the reasons that students find the ACT slightly easier is that there are only 4 answer choices on every question of the ACT except for the math section where the questions have 5 answer choices. By contrast, every section of the SAT has 5 answer choices.
ACT Workshop
Maize South High School is offering an ACT Workshop in December. The class has two sessions (Tuesday, December 1st and Thursday, December 3rd). The workshop includes practical and relevant information on how to increase your ACT score. The cost of the workshop is $75. For more information, please click this link. Space is limited.  

Drivers Education
USD266 Maize offers two programs in driver education; face-to-face and online. Both programs strive to prepare students in driver education to become knowledgeable and respectful of the law, to learn basic driving skills, and to develop a responsible attitude toward driving. The instructors will provide critical experience to students, involve parents in the process, and foster cooperative interactions with others in the driving environment.

Online Driver Education
Online Driver Education is a district course offered to high school students who meet the minimum age requirement of 14. This course is offered each term during the school year with a limit of 50 students each term. The book work is available 24/7 online, and the driving is done after school. Drive times are typically 3:00-5:00pm. The course is pass/fail (.5 credit) and the course cost is $200. It is recommended that students obtain a learners permit before enrolling in this course. If you would like to sign up for Online Driver Education, click on the appropriate link below. Please pay attention to the required enrollment night posted in the sign up form. If you are not in attendance for the enrollment night you will be dropped from the course.

Students may register for Term 2 Drivers Ed beginning October 15th.  
  • Term 2 Sign Up will be available here beginning Oct. 15th.  
  • Term 3 Sign Up will be available here beginning Dec. 15th.
  • Term 4 Sign Up will be available here beginning Feb. 24th.

2021 Summer Driver Education
Information on 2021 Summer Driver Education will be posted in the Spring.

Congratulations to our PSAT National Merit Students!
  • Students receiving a Letter of Commendation: The following students are being recognized for the exceptional academic promise demonstrated by their outstanding performance on the qualifying test used for the National Merit program entry.
Matthew Barnard

  • National Merit Semi-Finalist: The following students scored in the top 1% and will have the opportunity to continue in the National Merit Scholarship Competition.  

Noah Hale
Jeanine Lopez

Congratulations to our AP Scholars!  
  • AP Scholars: Granted to students who receive scores of 3 or higher on three or more AP Exams.

Class of 2020-Lucy Axmann, Eryn Bayliff, Lauren Doan, Keegan Smith 
Class of 2021 - Bode Carter, Noah Hale, Rachel Meeker

  • AP Scholars with Honor: Granted to students who receive scores of 3.25 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on four or more of these exams.

Class of 2020 - Taylor Wolgast
Class of 2021 - Amanda Branom

  • AP Scholars with Distinction: Granted to students who receive an average score of at least 3.5 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on five or more of these exams.

Class of 2020 - Jason Liang-Lin, Connor Mitchell

National AP Scholar:
Class of 2020 - Jason Liang-Lin
College and Career Counseling
Fall is a busy time in the College and Career Office. Seniors are applying for college admission and for the FAFSA, while underclassmen are beginning their search for the perfect college.    

During the month of September, we hosted the FAFSA/Scholarship Information Session for students grades 10-12 and their parents. We also promoted college visit opportunities in lieu of our typical field trips. We also have many things planned for the month of October.

Apply KS Event! - October 1st and 2nd from 8:00 - 11:00 in the MHS commons area. This event will allow students to complete college application(s) and ask questions to college representatives. Seniors may also receive assistance in the College & Career Office (D-8)

  • If you have not yet applied to a college:
Bring your charged Chromebook
Bring your Social Security Number
Bring a credit or debit card if you plan to apply to a four year college
We will have college admissions representatives to assist you 
Once you have applied, we will celebrate with pictures (bring your cellphone), and a gift card.  

  • If you have already applied to a college and have been accepted, come to the commons and show us your acceptance email on your phone. We will take pictures for social media and celebrate your application and acceptance with pictures to post on social media.

FAFSA Completion Nights
  • Monday, October 5th is the FAFSA Completion Night at Maize High School from 6:00 - 7:30 p.m. Financial Aid officers will be at Maize to assist students and parents with the FAFSA process. 

  • Monday, October 12th is the FAFSA Completion Night at Maize South High School from 6:00 - 7:30 p.m. Financial Aid officers will be at Maize to assist students and parents with the FAFSA process. 

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about college and career. I am happy to help you or refer you to someone who can help. Please email me at dclose@usd266.com or call at 316.350.2281.  
News from the Nurse
Nurse’s Notes 

When your child is ill or injured please call the school attendance office or the school nurse’s office.

Medications at MHS
  • Prescription Meds – The nurse’s office needs a doctor’s order and parents must bring it to school. Please call the school nurse’s office with questions. You will find a med form on the Maize USD266.com website.

  • Over the Counter Meds – All meds need to be in their original unexpired container. After the parent/guardian has signed the med form, located on the Maize USD266.com website, the student may turn in the signed med form into the school nurse’s office and start carrying their over the counter medications like: Tylenol, Ibuprofen, or cough drops.

  • Immunizations are due 10/1/2020. You should have received an email in May from Dana Desjardins
Thank you to the students, parents and staff for doing all you do! 
Any questions or concerns call me at 350-2123 or 350-2137. Take Care☺
Class and Club News
 One Ma1ze students in the Aerospace class at MCA. Students are unpacking and taking inventory of all the pieces that will become an AIRPLANE!

This will be the third year students will build an airplane in partnership with Tango Flight, Airbus, and WSU Tech. Mentors work alongside students, who in one year will earn a Fundamentals of Aerospace Manufacturing Technical Certification and 19 hours of WSU Tech credit for FREE! If completed after graduation this program would cost students more than $4,000. Students who complete this program have a 100% job placement rate in the local area. 
One Ma1ze Students in the Certified Nurse Aide (CNA) course practiced taking care of patients by shaving balloons. 35 students have been attending in person classes through WSU Tech at MCA since August 11th. These students will begin clinical rotations on September 30th and will earn their Certified Nurses Assistant License. Many of these students will complete all 34 credit hours of the Patient Care Technician Certification Program offered at MCA for FREE. After graduation, this same certification would cost students over $6,000. (Program Information Attached).

In our region and nationally, there is a growing demand for healthcare professions and it is the fastest growing sector over the next 5 years with a +1.3% year-over-year rate of growth and a forecasted number of jobs over this period is expected to be +2,930. 

We have so many students interested in this program, that this Spring, we have added another CNA course to the schedule.
OneMaize Fire Science students in action! We have 9 students enrolled in Fire Science at Maize Career Academy from all three schools: CHSM, MSHS, and MHS. These students have been attending in person classes through HutchCC since August 18th and their instructor is Firefighter Shae Brooks. 

Students completed one minute drills to see if they were able to get all of their gear on in one minute or less! These students will earn 7 college credit hours, CPR certification, the Fire Fighter I National Certification, learn emergency medical care, fire behavior, firefighting equipment and rescue and safety procedures, and participate in Search and Rescue Day! We are excited to offer this program again at MCA! 

Long-term Occupational Projections for South Central Kansas 2016-2017 show 736 annual openings in Protective Service Occupations and currently only 10% of the local need is being met. 
WSU Tech Courses Begin for One Ma1ze Students
This week students in WSU Tech's Welding, Computer Support, and HVAC programs will begin their classes at WSU Tech. There are currently 57 One Ma1ze students who participate in these programs and earn invaluable training and certifications prior to their high school graduation. These programs offer training for some of the highest demand, highest wage careers in our area and many of the courses are tuition free. If you would like more information on programs available check out WSU Tech's Block Programs or talk to your high school counselor.
One Ma1ze Baking and Pastry 2 students were busy making pumpkin rolls at MCA. Students in this course expand on the learning in Culinary Essentials and Baking and Pastry 1, with an emphasis on baking and pastry techniques. Standards include safety and sanitation, food production equipment and tools, baking and pastry common ingredients, quality production management, preparation of yeast doughs and quick breads, pies, tarts, cookies, biscotti, cake decorating, pate a choux, meringues, angel food cake, souffles, custards, chocolate, and dessert plating. Yum!

There are currently 194 One Ma1ze students taking courses in the Restaurant and Event Management pathway, which includes Culinary Essentials, Baking and Pastry 1 and 2, Culinary Arts, and Culinary Applications. 

For the region, Personal and Culinary Services/Restaurant and Event Management/Hospitality and Tourism only 47% of the total annual demand is currently being met. 
YOU Give Blood & Save LIves 
MHS Students Get Scholarships!
Win ~ Win!

Although the Kansas Association of Youth Club is not able to hold our blood drive at school, we’re still committed to helping! This fall, Maize High School is hosting a Red Cross virtual blood drive and you can help make it a success! 

To count toward our virtual blood drive goal:
Click our virtual blood drive link by October 16, 2020 and schedule an appointment to
give blood. To count toward our efforts, be sure to schedule your appointment through
our unique link  Maize High School Virtual Blood Drive  

Enter your zip code.
Schedule an appointment for the Red Cross blood drive of your choice. You can pick the day and time that’s most convenient for you.
On the day of your blood donation, complete your RapidPass and arrive at your
appointment time. Don’t forget to eat, drink plenty of water, sleep well and bring your ID!

Donors who are under 17, but at least16 years old can participate by calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment and confirming with dlowry@usd266.com once scheduled.
Good News
Congratulations to Mr. Hammett who won an Agriculture Excellence in Teaching award from the Kansas Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom / Farm Bureau for successfully integrating agricultural education into his pre-existing curriculum. Below is the formal announcement:
James Hammett teaches high school science at Maize High School where he deploys project-based hands-on learning to focus on real world topics in Kansas. He uses animal husbandry to teach the core principles of biology utilizing chickens, quail and catfish. Hammett has opened his students’ eyes to the breadth of careers in agriculture which has increased agricultural class enrollment and steered students to the agricultural career pathway. 
Congratulations to Mr. Bergkamp on being selected to receive one of the Climate + Energy Project's 2020 Changemaker Awards!  

The Changemaker Award recognizes an organization or individual whose recent (1-3 years) work has significantly advanced climate, energy, and/or environmental issues in Kansas. 
Congratulations on all of your good work!  
Congratulations to Mrs. Nitcher on her selection for Claes Nobel Educator of Distinction, a special program of the National Society of High School Sholars that honors educators world wide. Mrs. Nitcher is presented this honor because of her dedication to teaching and the difference she makes as a role model and source of inspiration. Congratulations!
Upcoming Events
Fall Picture Day is just
around the corner!
Individual fall portraits for hybrid students will take place on October 8th and 9th.

Fall pictures for remote students and hybrid re-takes will take place on November 19th and 20th.
Driver's Education
Driver Education
USD 266 Maize offers Online Driver Education each term during the school year. The online driver education program strives to prepare students to become knowledgeable and respectful of the law; to learn basic driving skills; and to develop a responsible attitude toward driving. The instructors will provide critical experience to students; involve parents in the process, and foster cooperative interaction with others in the driving environment. Students should be studying the Kansas Driver Handbook (https://www.ksrevenue.org) and be ready to take a handbook test at the start of the course. More detailed information on Online Driver Education can be found on the district website.

Online Driver Education 2020-2021: Go to the district website to sign up for an Online Driver Education Course. Each term class will have an enrollment night and the date is posted on the sign up form. Each class is limited to 50 students. Enrollment packets may be picked up in the counseling office or downloaded off the district website. 
-         Sign Up For Term 2 (Opens Up Oct. 15th)
-         Sign Up For Term 3 (Opens Up Dec. 15th)
-         Sign Up For Term 4 (Opens Up Feb. 24th)

**Student and one Parent/Guardian will be required to attend the enrollment meeting. To help cut down on contact and foot traffic in the building do not bring siblings or friends to the meeting. Please bring your mask, enrollment packet, a writing pen, corrective eye wear (if needed) and any type of Kansas Permit/License you already have to the Enrollment Meeting**
Spirit Central
Visit Spirit Central at Maize High School in Room E1 to get Eagle apparel. This student-run store is operated by Maize High's Business Professionals of America students and sponsors. The store is not funded by the school district and is entirely self-supporting.
The profits earned help BPA students to attend regional, state, and national competitions each year. Please stop by and take a look! Store hours are from 7:15 a.m. to 7:40 a.m, during Encor, and during all lunches. The store has a website for online ordering!
Yearbooks for sale
The award-winning Regal Red yearbook is on sale. The cost of the book is $40 until Dec. 31. After Dec. 31, the cost goes up to $45. Yearbooks can be purchased by going to the Balfour website, by calling 800-BALFOUR (800-225-3687) or by check. Checks can be delivered to yearbook adviser Dan Loving in Room D14 and must be made out to Maize High.

Free/reduced yearbooks
Students are eligible for a free yearbook if they participate in the free-reduced meal program. There are a limited number of free books, and first priority will be given to seniors. The price can also be reduced if you are able to pay a portion. To be considered, fill out this form

Be a Yearbook Angel
If you would like to donate a yearbook to a student in need, you can sign up to be a Yearbook Angel. Yearbook Angels will receive special recognition in the book. For more information on how to donate, email yearbook adviser Dan Loving at dloving@usd266.com.

2020 yearbook distribution
Yearbook staffers conducted a drive-thru distribution in August. They handed out more than 300 yearbooks in three hours. If you ordered a 2020 yearbook and haven’t picked it up yet, it can be picked up in Dan Loving’s room, D14. Members of the Class of 2020 and remote students can email Mr. Loving to make arrangements. 
Important References

  • Dec. 20: End of Term 2
  • Dec. 23-Jan 3: NO SCHOOL - Winter Break
  • Jan. 6: Term 3 begins
Please visit www.usd266.com/bulletinboard to access the Maize USD 266 Online Bulletin Board for complete and timely information about upcoming events and activities sponsored by Maize Schools and partner agencies.
Dillons is giving away $2 MILLION to local organizations! 
Where Shopping and Giving Come Together!
Use your Plus Shopper's Card & help us grow!
Supporting our organization has never been easier - just shop at Dillons and scan your Plus Shopper's Card! 
Here's how to enroll:
2. Scroll down to find your location and click "Enroll Now".
3. Sign in to your online account or create an account.
4. Find and select our organization, and click "Save".
You'll start earning rewards for our organization right away on qualifying purchases made using your Plus Shopper's Card! Learn more at https://www.dillons.com/account/enrollCommunityRewardsNow and thank you for your support.
In order for purchases to be credited to Maize High School throughout 2016 shoppers must enroll in the Rewards Program. Be sure to sign-in and make your contribution selection using this 5-digit NPO number:  69258.
MHS Administration

Dr. Chris Botts

Dr. Lindsay King
MCA Coordinator

Sonya Tice
Associate Principal
Freshmen A - G

Aaron Leichner
Assistant Principal
Freshmen Q - Z

Morgan Marsh
Assistant Principal
Freshmen H - P

Eric Wolgast
Athletics/Activities Director
MHS Counseling Department

Betsy Manning
Director of Guidance
Students A - Ca

Geri Hickerson
Students Cb - H

Paula Bette
Students I - Q

Jennifer Cashman
Students R - Z

Megan Bleier
Counseling Administrative Assistant

Kristi Olinger

Diane Close
College and Career Advocate
ONEMA1ZE  #OneMa1ze