May 24, 2023 Maize Pulse
Maize USD 266
Dr. Greer: Celebrating 2022-23 and making plans for an even better future
At the end of the school year, I always become nostalgic and look back at the celebrations, accomplishments, and success stories. The 2022-23 school year will always be a special one for me, as it was my first here in Maize as Superintendent of Schools. I am so proud of our graduates, our award-winning employees, and our community. We have amazing, inspiring stories to tell!
The end of the school year is also a little like New Year's Eve. While we celebrate, we are already making plans for the next year and all it has in store. Looking back, I spent the school year making connections during school visits, school events, and the Superintendent Employee Listening Tour, in which I met with groups of employees in their schools and departments. I appreciated those of you who played a role in stakeholder advisory groups, including the District Site Council, Building Site Councils, and Special Education Advisory Team.
With all these connections, we inventoried valuable data points, analyzed them, and summarized them into four main focus areas:
- Cohesive community culture
- Expert faculty and staff
- Innovative instructional design
- Building for the future
I am eager to work on these focus areas as the foundation for our next strategic plan, which we hope to finalize this summer and share details with you soon! Maize already is an amazing place. We will only keep getting better, and we are working hard on a plan to help guide us in the right direction.
Enjoy your summer break, and we will see you soon for another strong and successful school year!
Dr. Raquel Greer
Superintendent of Schools
Connect with Dr. Greer
- On Twitter: @rockigreer
- Email: email@example.com
- Online: www.usd266.com/superintendent
Maize USD 266 school year recap video
Important upcoming dates
- May 24: Last day of school, end term four
- Aug. 11: Parent/Teacher Conferences
- Aug. 15: First Day of School for all of grades 1 through 9 and pre-K and kindergarten students with last names beginning with letters A through K
- Aug. 16: Second day of school, with school in session for all of grades 1 through 12 and pre-K and kindergarten students with last names beginning with letters L through Z
- Aug. 17: School in session for all grades Pre-K- through 12
District news and updates
266 Football headed to Riverfront Stadium for Sept. 29 game
Bigger venue. More fans. Historic event.
Save the date: 266 Football at downtown Wichita’s Riverfront Stadium, home of the Wichita Wind Surge.
Join the #MaizeFamily while we cheer on the Maize South Mavericks versus the Maize High Eagles on the evening of Friday, Sept. 29, 2023!
Watch for additional information to come.
Help us name the game!
We are looking for a fun and meaningful name for this big Maize USD 266 event! We welcome your ideas, which you can click here to submit by June 2.
High schools recognized among best in Wichita area
Maize South High School and Maize High School have been named among the top six of Niche's 2023 Best Public High Schools in the Wichita Area. Maize South High School was ranked No. 4, and Maize High School was ranked No. 6. Congratulations! Click here to access the Niche list.
Silver Fox roadwork, closure scheduled for summer
Silver Fox, the east-west roadway that connects Tyler and Maize roads south of Maize South Middle School and Maize South Elementary School, will undergo improvements this summer. Please be aware of the roadwork schedule:
- June 5 through 16: Curb work will occur, but Silver Fox will remain open.
- June 19 and June 20: The portion of Silver Fox between the two roundabouts south of Maize South Elementary School will be closed.
- June 21 through June 27: The portion of Silver Fox between the roundabout nearest Maize South Middle School and Tyler Road will be closed. During this time, please access Maize South Middle School from the north by entering campus near Maize South High School.
Maize Schools apologizes for the inconvenience but looks forward to making improvements this summer. Thank you.
Now hiring lifeguards, swim lesson instructors
Jump into an opportunity to become a lifeguard and/or swim lesson instructor in Maize this summer! Click here to apply.
Save the date: Maize USD 266 job fairs
Maize Middle School tennis courts closed for resurfacing
The Maize Middle School tennis courts will be closed for about a month beginning around May 25 for resurfacing. Maize USD 266 apologizes for any inconvenience but looks forward to improvements to come to the court. Thank you.
Maize Board of Education news
Small changes to some annual fees for 2023-24 due to inflation
During the April Maize Board of Education meeting, board members approved several small annual fee increases for 2023-24. School meals prices will remain the same in 2023-24. These increases will assist the district in navigating increased costs due to inflation.
- The curriculum/textbook rental fee will increase $5 per student to $100 for elementary, intermediate, and middle school students and $120 for high school students.
- The virtual curriculum fee will increase $5 per student to $105.
- The athletic fee will increase $5 per student to $50 for middle and high school students.
- The pre-K curriculum fee for students attending three or more days per week will increase $5 to $105. For students attending two days per week, the fee will increase $5 to $55.
- Fee-based pre-K fees will increase as follows. For students attending four days a week, the annual fee will increase $90 to $2,340 ($260 a month for nine months). For students attending two days a week, the fee will increase $45 to $1,170 ($130 a month for nine months). For students attending full-day pre-K, the fee will increase $200 to $4,950 ($495 a month for 10 months).
District honors Officer Jamey Dover, school resource officer, for years of service
During the May 8 Maize Board of Education meeting, Maize USD 266 thanked Maize Police Department Officer Jamey Dover for his seven years of service as a school resource officer. The district recognized him for his selfless service to the community, district, students, and employees demonstrated daily through personal interactions, kindness, and compassion. Pictured with Officer Dover is Maize Board of Education President Jeff Jarman.
Maize celebrated for becoming Kansas' third Project Adam district, being even better prepared to respond to cardiac arrest emergency
KU School of Medicine-Wichita Executive Director Aaron Ryan attended the May 8 Maize Board of Education meeting to present the district and Maize USD 266 Nursing Coordinator Joann Wheeler with a Project Adam Heart Safe School certificate of recognition. Ryan is the Kansas program coordinator for Project Adam, which has helped Maize USD 266 become even better prepared to respond to a cardiac arrest emergency. Project Adam's nationwide goal is to provide access to comprehensive and sustained Heart Safe School programming to teach school employees what to do if a student or employee becomes unresponsive. This training could save lives at Maize USD 266, and Project Adam reports that its programs have saved more than 200 lives across America.
Ryan said that Project Adam is active in 37 states and that Maize USD 266 is the third district in the state of Kansas to become a Project Adam campus.
Earlier in the school year, Wheeler trained 81 employees, bringing the total of staff members to 136 district-wide now certified in CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) and AED (automated external defibrillator). Trained employees now include teachers, paras, secretaries, food service staff members, counselors, and administrators. This number does not include other employees already trained in CPR, including school nurses and coaches.
Congratulations and thank you to Wheeler, who retires this year after 29 years of service to Maize USD 266! Watch for a profile of her and other 2023 Maize USD 266 retirees coming to the district's Facebook page this summer.
Next school board meetings
The Maize Board of Education's next monthly meeting will be at 7 p.m. Monday, June 12 in the classrooms at the Maize Performing Arts and Aquatics Center, 1155 W. Academy in Maize. Meetings are open to the public. Find a link to meeting agendas and minutes, school board member information, and policies at www.usd266.com/schoolboard. Regular monthly meetings are broadcast live at bit.ly/Maize266YouTube.
District celebrates 2023 Celebrating Excellence award winners
Congratulations to the winners of Maize USD 266’s 2023 Celebrating Excellence awards! Employees were recognized in the following categories: Education, Paraeducators, Support Services, and Related Service Providers.
- The Celebrating Excellence in Education award recognizes excellent classroom teachers who use effective strategies for improving student performance and provide quality educational experiences for students.
- The Celebrating Excellence in Paraeducators award recognizes professionals who are a vital part of the education experience for teachers and students. Our paraeducators provide extra support in the classrooms and throughout the school environment to help students learn, connect, and grow.
- The Celebrating Excellence in Support Services award recognizes professionals who work behind-the-scenes in a variety of ways and across multiple departments to support students and further the district’s mission to Connect, Learn, and Lead.
- The Celebrating Excellence in Related Service Providers award recognizes professionals who apply their expertise in a multitude of specialties to their daily work. Areas include speech language pathology, psychology, occupational therapy, and more to help each child reach his or her potential.
Visit the Maize USD 266 Facebook page for highlights on each winner throughout the summer.
Maize one of three districts statewide to win KICK Outreach Challenge to help keep Kansas clean
Congratulations to Lesley Riddell-Koch, Maize South Middle School and Maize Middle School educator, who recently was awarded $1,000 for being a winner of the Keep It Clean Kansas (KICK) Outreach Challenge! The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) and Kansas Association for Conservation and Environmental Education (KACEE) competition invites students to create projects to educate their communities about recycling, composting, and other waste reduction opportunities. Three winners are selected each year. Click here to learn more.
Riddell-Koch worked with students to put together presentations that students could share with their peers focusing on issues including “Landfills and Plastic Water Bottles,” “Plastic Pollutions and their Consequences,” and “How to We Encourage More People to Use the Three R’s?”
Maize USD 266 students earn recognition from SAFE Kansas
Maize South High School recently received the 2023 Buckle Up Bracket champion banner for placing first in a seatbelt promotion contest. The school also received a $500 award from SAFE Kansas to fund volunteer and safety projects. SAFE stands for Seatbelts Are For Everyone. It is a high school student-led program focusing on peer-to-peer traffic safety promotion. Pictured is Maize South High School senior and SAFE leader Sophia Eschrich.
The following Maize USD 266 students also were named a SAFE Kansas Student of the Month this year:
- Maize South High School senior Bridget Johnson
- Maize South High School sophomore Cole Brogden
- Maize High School senior Alex Caldwell
- Maize South High School senior Vanessa Carey
Maize USD 266 Multimedia Communications Specialist's military deployment reunion video wins top state school communications award
Maize USD 266 Multimedia Communications Specialist Madison McCalla won a Kansas School Public Relations Award of Excellence for her October 2021 deployment reunion video. It told the story of a deployed father surprising his twins and daughter at Maize South Intermediate School and Maize South Middle School after 14 months apart. On the district's Facebook page, the video reached an audience of nearly 12,000 people.
Teacher wins Heartland Credit Union grant
Maize South Intermediate School teacher Alexis Wiseman received a grant from Heartland Credit Union recently. She uses animals in the classroom to teach symbiotic relationships and genetics with the students.
Maize Education Foundation
Thank you, Maize community!
The Maize Education Foundation is grateful to be part of a community that continues to show members will come together to support students and educators. Thank you to everyone who helps the school family grow. Special thanks to all the donors and sponsors who support the district by supporting Maize Education Foundation programs and events. The Foundation could not be here without you!
Anyone can donate: Just click here! Every dollar makes a difference.
If you or someone you know graduated from Maize USD 266, this message is for you! Maize Education Foundation committee members are hard at work making plans for monthly gatherings and networking opportunities and creating content updates so you can keep in touch with all the amazing things that make the district special. Supporters also are working on a couple of special events this fall, and you won't want to miss out!
Click here to sign up for the Foundation's alumni newsletter. If you're interested in helping build Foundation alumni engagement, please reach out to Foundation Executive Director Travis Bloom at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Foundation needs all the help it can get!
Maize High School Cheer reaches 50th Kansas Honor Flight welcome home celebration
Maize High School Cheer recently welcomed home nearly 100 local veterans who had traveled to Washington, D.C. as part of the Kansas Honor Flight program, which helps veterans visit national war memorials. Maize High Cheer attended its first Honor Flight in October 2016. In addition, Maize High Cheer has honored veterans in other ways, including themed football games. Thank you to U.S. veterans and to Maize High Cheer for their support!
Summer camps for students
Maize USD 266 students of all skill levels can learn the basics of sports from school coaches, improve athleticism, make new friends, learn about science and multimedia, further develop sportsmanship, and have fun at camps this summer! Click here for details and registration information about summer camp opportunities in the following categories.
- STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math)
Free meals for kids this summer
Children up to age 18 can access free meals through the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA's) summer meal programs. No registration or application is required. Click here to find a free meal location near you.
Kansas families invited to apply for the Kansas Education Enrichment Program (KEEP)
The Kansas Education Enrichment Program (KEEP) provides qualifying parents and guardians with a $1,000 award per eligible student to pay for a variety of educational goods and services that promote learning.
Kansas families are invited to apply for these funds at www.keep.ks.gov. There is no cost to apply or to participate in the program, and multiple students per household can enroll. Click here to learn more. Students may use KEEP funds for things including:
- Camps for subjects related to academic/school curriculum
- Language classes
- Instrument and vocal lessons, including instrument purchase or rental
- Tutoring services
- Curriculum materials, school supplies, and various technology
Participation in internet speed test and survey helps statewide broadband support
The Kansas Department of Commerce is inviting residents to participate in a statewide internet speed test and survey in June and has made the following parent letters available. Those interested can read the letter and then spend 10 minutes to complete the speed test and survey. The data collected in the survey will be vital to federal funds sent to Kansas for statewide broadband support. Thank you.
Maize USD 266 e-newsletters
The mission of Maize USD 266 is to inspire students to discover their potential through connecting, learning, and leading.
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