CUSD News

The Premier District of Choice

September 2021

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Welcome!

Welcome to the September edition of CUSD News for 2021-22 school year. In this quarterly eNewsletter, we highlight the students, staff, schools and district honors and accomplishments that make Chandler Unified a special place, and the Premier District of Choice. We have a lot to celebrate, so please scroll down to check us out!


NOTE: Translate and High Contrast buttons are available at the top right of this page.

Superintendent Frank Narducci at Rice Elementary on the first day of school

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In the News

Patriot Day Commemoration at Basha High

CUSD Schools Commemorate Patriot Day

CUSD schools commemorated Patriot Day September 2021 with a variety of activities to help students learn about one of our country's worst tragedies. Many schools welcomed and recognized first responders to be a part of the events. More pictures are also featured on the CUSD Facebook page or here: CUSD Commemorates Patriot Day 2021 photo album
WGA Remembers
Patriot Day Photos across the district

Chandler High ROTC kicks off Kerry Croswhite Invitational Swim Meet

Chandler High ROTC helped kick off the inaugural Kerry Croswhite Invitational swim meet on September 11-12.
Kerry Croswhite Invitational Swim Meet

Check out CUSD Cares Podcasts, Counseling & Social Services News

In CUSD Cares Podcasts, Brenda Vargas, Director of Counseling and Social Services, engages knowledgeable guests in a lively discussion of topics that impact parents and students related to Counseling and Social Services within the Chandler Unified School District. Click to listen and follow CUSD Cares Podcasts -- now available on Spotify and Google Podcasts!


Recent Topics include:

  • Healthy Relationships
  • Domestic Violence
  • Supporting Your Child through Grief/Loss
  • Confident Parents, Confident Kids
CUSD Cares Podcasts

CONNECT WITH US - CUSD ON SOCIAL MEDIA

We invite all families and the community to keep up to date about Chandler Unified by liking, following and subscribing below!

Find and like us on Social Media

Follow us on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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CUSD Graduates Experience Success

The numbers are in... CUSD 2020-2021 graduates earned a whopping $156 million in scholarship dollars and 18,649 Dual Credit hours. WOW!
CUSD 2020-2021 graduates earned $156 million in scholarship dollars and 18,649 Dual Credit hours

Hamilton Golfers Take First Place

The Hamilton High School Boys Golf team travelled to Fort Worth, Texas and competed in the prestigious Bart Granger Memorial Tournament. The team took home the first-place trophy, beating 52 of the best teams from Texas and Arizona. Congratulations to the following team members for their outstanding performance:
  • Nick Lippe
  • Vincent Cervantes
  • Mahanth Chirravuri
  • Kush Shah
  • Wyatt Chapman
  • Anawin Pickulthong
Hamilton Golfers

CUSD Shines in Championship Athletics

Chandler Unified School District boasts 224 athletic state championships in the last 5 years. Chandler Unified School District - ENROLL TODAY!
224 Athletic State Championships in last 5 years

Casteel High Selected for Arizona Kids Voting Leadership Council

Casteel High was one of nine schools in Arizona selected for the Kids Voting Leadership Council. The council, administered by the Arizona Bar Foundation, is comprised of grade 6-12 students interested in encouraging youth to vote. Members lead the charge to increase positive ideas of voting and develop ways to encourage youth-based civic engagement.


Participating schools nominate students to sit on the council each school year. Congratulations to Casteel High School students Holden Granillo, Kelsey Mikesell, and Casey Reidhead who were appointed to the Kids Voting State Leadership Council, and to their sponsor, Renee Howell. Council members learn to conduct official meetings, take minutes and make motions. Students meet with government officials and work with their school to educate students on being an engaged citizen through implementation of voting-related projects.


Kids Voting Arizona is a nonprofit, nonpartisan grassroots-driven voter education program founded in the 1980s and an affiliate of Kids Voting USA. Kids Voting Arizona is committed to create lifelong voting habits in children, increase family communication about citizenship, and encourage greater adult voter turnout.

Holden Granillo, Kelsey Mikesell and Casey Reidhead

CUSD Shines with Flinn Scholars

Chandler Unified School District boasts 10 Flinn Scholars in the last 5 years -- 10% of the Arizona total. Chandler Unified School District - ENROLL TODAY!

Five CUSD School Ranked in Top Ten in Arizona

Five CUSD schools, three elementary and two middle schools were ranked in the top 10 in Arizona by SchoolDigger.


SchoolDigger calculates school rankings based on AzM2 English Language Arts, and AzM2 Mathematics test scores released by the Arizona Department of Education. These rankings were last updated on August 31, 2021 and are based on the most recent test scores available. Data sources include the National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. Department of Education and the Arizona Department of Education.

CUSD ranked in SchoolDigger Top Schools

Knox Gifted Academy was ranked the #1 elementary school, Weinberg Gifted Academy was ranked the #2 elementary and Chandler Traditional Academy - Independence Campus ranked the number #10 elementary in the state of Arizona (out of 782 schools ranked).


Basha Accelerated Middle School was ranked the #1 middle school and Arizona College Prep Middle School was ranked the #3 middle school in the state (out of 497 schools ranked).

CUSD Boasts A+ Schools of Excellence and National Blue Ribbon Winners

Chandler Unified School District boasts 94 A+ Schools of Excellence or National Blue Ribbon Award schools. Chandler Unified School District - ENROLL TODAY!
Over 94 A+ Schools of Excellence or National Blue Ribbon Award schools

Chandler Volleyball Teams Earn Top Coaches Association Academic Award

Chandler High School - The Chandler Wolves Volleyball Teams earned the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Academic Award. Chandler High's volleyball teams maintained a minimum year-long 3.3 GPA last year. Special congratulations to Chandler Girls Volleyball for earning Honor Roll for being in the top 20% nationally.
USMC/AVCA Team Academic Awards

CUSD shines with National Merit Finalists

Chandler Unified School District boasts 208 National Merit Finalists in the last 5 years. Chandler Unified School District - ENROLL TODAY!
208 National Merit Finalists in the last 5 years

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Basha High Athlete finishes in top five in U.S.

Gabbie Garcia was invited to the National Scholastic Athletics Foundation (NSAF) High School Outdoor National Championships, Presented by Nike, at the University of Oregon. Gabbie finished 5th in America (#1 freshmen) with a would be Arizona State Record javelin throw of 152 feet 8 inches! VIDEO: Jade Kwinn and Gabriella Garcia 4th and 5th Place Girls Javelin Championship - The Outdoor Nationals, Presented by Nike 2021

Casteel Senior Featured in Times Square

Casteel High senior on the Unified cheer team, Sam Derivan, was featured in Times Square presentation. ABC15.com article and video: Two Valley girls featured in Times Square presentation
Sam Derivan

Casteel Sophomore Represents Arizona at Karate National Championships

Casteel High School sophomore Joshua Corbin represented Arizona at the 2021 USA Karate National Championships and Team Trials over Labor Day weekend. Joshua brought home a Bronze medal in Kumite to Chandler Martial Arts Center and the USA Karate Arizona ASO team!

CTA Goodman Student Makes Top 5 in U.S. Chess Federation Competition

Chandler Traditional Academy - Goodman Campus 3rd grader Tarun Sankar participated in the Las Vegas Open Chess Tournament Under 1300 USCF (United States Chess Federation) section and scored 5 our of 7 points. He came in the top five (third place was shared by three candidates) Congratulations, Tarun!
Tarun Sankar in Chess Competition

Casteel Alum Honored as top Marine in class

Casteel High School 2020 graduate Lance Corporal Ian Nieder completed United States Marine basic training camp and finished #1 in his class of 430 enlistees.

Basha, Chandler High FCCLA Take Medals at Nationals Competition in Tennessee

Basha High Family, Career and Community Leaders of America students, under the direction of teacher Melanie Alexander, won several gold medals and silver medals at the FCCLA Nationals, Nashville, TN.


  • Sara Alexander won a GOLD medal in Competitive Event - Leadership
  • Jared Alexander and Ella Kattelman won GOLD medals in Competitive Event - Entrepreneurship
  • Jasmine Diaz and Evangeline Anderson won GOLD medals in Competitive Event - Focus on Children
  • Kalia Cole, Lily Jensen, and Savannah Bluhm won SILVER medals in Competitive Event - Chapter Service Project Portfolio
  • Kayla Lydy won a SILVER medal in Competitive Event - Teach and Train.
Basha High Family, Career and Community Leaders of America students
Chandler High School FCCLA students Layla Alwaely, Adamaris Lopez Morales, Kiara Wynn and their teacher Ms. Christy Herndon modeled work ethic, dedication, camaraderie, and enthusiasm, and brought home three medals from Nationals in Nashville, TN.


The Chandler High Early Childhood Education program showed the rest of the nation what the School of Champions is all about. Great work, Wolves!

Chandler High FCCLA

Chandler High Senior named Scholar Athlete of Year

Dillon Hunter, Chandler High School senior and a member of the soccer team, was named a 2020-2021 Scholar Athlete of the Year by the National Alliance of African American Athletes - Phoenix Chapter. Dillon maintains a 3.3 GPA while involved in numerous activities in and outside of school.

Chandler High Athlete, Alums Receive State Honors

Chandler High School - Brandon Buckner (Class of 2021- currently at the University of Oregon) was honored during the inaugural USA Today High School Sports Awards celebration. Brandon was named Arizona's Football Defensive Player of the Year.



Zach Espalin (Class of 2021 - currently at the US Naval Academy), was honored during the inaugural USA Today High School Sports Awards celebration as Arizona's Boys Wrestler of the Year.



Trinity Henderson (CHS Senior), was honored during the inaugural USA Today High School Sports Awards celebration as Arizona's Girls Track and Field Athlete of the Year.

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Perry Athletic Director Wins Top Honors

Congratulations to Jen Burks from Perry High School who was named the Arizona Interscholastic Association (AIA) 6A Athletic Director of the Year. Former CUSD athletic director Marcus Williams was also an AIA Meritorious Award winner.

Three CUSD Teachers Honored as Arizona Leading for Change Leaders Fellows

Teachers Jennifer Chastain (Andersen Elementary), Katie Nash (Chandler High), and Michelle Capriotti (Casteel High) were selected as three of the 32 Arizona Leading for Change Leaders Fellows for the 2021-2022 year. This year they will work as fellows to enhance their leadership and advocacy skills as they work alongside civic leaders to enhance the lives and opportunities for Arizona students and families.

Chandler High Teacher wins Ag Association Teacher of Year

Chandler High - Arthur Argueta won the San Tan District Agriculture Teachers Association (AATA) Teacher of the Year award. Mr. Argueta was recognized for his hard work at Chandler High as an Agriculture Teacher. Mr. Argueta manages the CHS FFA Farm, organizes the broiler chicken production and harvesting, and manages student projects within agricultural engineering and small stock animals. Mr. Argueta will compete for the State AATA Teacher of the Year.

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School Program Highlights

CUSD shines as Premier District of Choice

Chandler Unified School District boasts:
  • 98 Dual Course offerings
  • 43 Language offerings
  • 27 Athletic offerings
  • 81 Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate offerings


Chandler Unified School District - ENROLL TODAY!

CUSD's Many offerings

Chandler High FFA Hosts Lamb Auction

Chandler High School Future Farmers of America (FFA) students hosted a lamb auction. FFA students Jayda Schmerfeld won her bid on a black faced wether lamb. Raynele Harrington and Ricardo Tapia are inspecting lambs to bid on. Four Chandler FFA students recently purchased lambs for the Maricopa County Fair. Congratulations to Adrianna Erwin, Jayda Schmerfeld, Ricardo Tapia, and Raynele Harrington.
Chandler High FFA Lamb Auction

Conley Preschoolers Practice Skills

Conley Elementary School preschoolers practiced following directions, cutting, gluing, writing, counting, letter building, name recognition and more.

Elementary Connect Students Study Revolutionary War

Chandler Online Academy - Elementary Connect students in Ricque Pekara's class did a culminating activity called a "One Pager" to capture all they learned about Winter at Valley Forge during the American Revolutionary War.

Jacobson Elementary Students Use Thinking Maps

Jacobson Elementary students in Lauren Sullivan's third grade class are proud of their classroom shared-writing practice assignment! Third graders are reviewing Thinking Maps to help organize their ideas to write. This particular map is called the FLEE map which is a hybrid of the Flow map and Flee map. Students enjoy contributing to ideas about why Jacobson is the BEST! Now they will create their own stories as well.

Shumway Stars' Skills Shine

Shumway Leadership Academy - The Shumway Stars in Tracy Corbin's English Language Development classroom are shining bright as they demonstrate their English skills! They had a competition to challenge each other in writing plural nouns using suffixes, spelling rules, and irregular plurals that they have learned to use in their speaking and writing. These students excel at having fun while testing their knowledge!

CTA Freedom Kindergarten Holds Drive-By ABC Parade

Chandler Traditional Academy - Freedom Campus - CTA Freedom's kindergarten students celebrated learning all their letters with a drive-by ABC parade! Students chose a letter and decorated their vest with items that began with that letter. Parents drove through the parade to see their hard work and celebrate our kindergarteners for learning their ABCs!

Hull First Graders Learn About Community Helpers

Hull Elementary first graders dressed up as their favorite community helpers last week! Sebastian Pagano dressed up as principal Josh Cagle. Look out, CUSD! We've got a great future ahead!

Conley Student Scientists, Engineers Practice Skills

Conley Elementary School - Student scientists in room 10 are making observations and predictions with salt dough.



Conley 6th graders engineered their own class air purifier during STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math).
STEM students building an air purifier

San Marcos Reporters Deliver the News

San Marcos Elementary KSMB News Team sponsored by teachers Jolene Gallup and Scott Rothman is comprised of a dedicated group of fifth and sixth graders. They arrive early daily to create and deliver the news to all San Marcos students.
KSMB News Team

Chandler High JROTC trains San Marcos Flag Club

The San Marcos Elementary Flag Club was trained by Chandler High Jr ROTC students in August. (Scott Goodson is the Commandant of Cadets.) This awesome group of 6th graders raise and lower our flag each day, using the care and etiquette they learned in their training. San Marcos students LOVED seeing students from our feeder school (Chandler High) in the ROTC, especially a few former San Marcos Bears. San Marcos Flag Club Photo Album

Hull Students Use Clay to Learn About Writing

Hull Elementary students in Amy Frechette's fourth grade class crafted creations out of clay while learning about the writing process.

Payne Scientists Learn Chemical Properties

Payne Junior High - What better way to learn about chemical elements than by creating superheroes and villains based on the element's characteristics? Students in Scott Bemisdarfer's science class even dressed up as their hero.

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ACP Middle School Volleyball Supports Cancer Research

Arizona College Prep Middle School's seventh and eighth grade girls volleyball teams held a Dig Pink event on September 7 and raised nearly $3,000 in support of the Side-Out Foundation. ACPVB has held Dig Pink events since 2015 and has donated over $20,000 towards breast cancer research. Go, Knights!
Dig Pink Event to support cancer research

Basha High JROTC Supports Tunnel to Towers Charity

Basha High - As part of this year's 9/11 Remembrance events, Basha High School junior ROTC cadets raised $2,470 in just 11 days (1-11 Sep) for the 9/11 charity "Tunnel to Towers Foundation."
Basha Air Force JROTC Supporting Charity

Hull Principal Moonlights as Student Bike Mechanic?

Hull Elementary principal Josh Cagle steps up to fix a student's broken bike! He takes such good care of the students and staff.

Hancock Principal, Staff Slimed, Celebrating STEM Fundraising Goal

Hancock Elementary Principal Joe Walters, technology teacher Robert Lee, and student services coordinator Sherry Bollard took one for the team, being slimed to celebrate the school meeting the goal for their STEM fundraiser.
Slimed to support STEM Fundraiser

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Upcoming Events

September 27-October 8

1st Intersession - No School


October 11

Teacher Inservice/Workday - No School


October 12

Students return


October 25-26
Greater Arizona virtual college fair, 5-8 p.m.
Register Online. Registration opens on October 1.


November 11

Veterans Day Holiday - No School


November 24

No School


November 25-26

Thanksgiving Holidays - No School


December 17

Teacher Inservice/Workday - No School


December 20-31

2nd Intersession - No School


January 3

Teacher Inservice/Workday - No School

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Lil' Explorers Fall Intersession Camp

Lil' Explorers utilizes a whole child approach to learning in which physical, social, emotional and cognitive development is emphasized through individual and group activities. Throughout there are many opportunities to explore the areas of early literacy, math, science, social studies and dramatic play. Lunch and snacks are included.


Camp Dates: Sept. 27 - Oct. 8
Location: Perry High (224-2937)
Times: 6:30 a.m. – 5: 30 p.m.


Before registering, call the site directly at the phone number(s) provided above to check space availability.


Daily Rates:

  • Infants: $44
  • 1-2 yrs: $39
  • 3-4 yrs: $36


Enrollment Fee: $75 (for first time attenders)

5% Family Discount Available


Register today for fall break camp!


For information on all Community Education programming, and a schedule of field trips and activities, go to www.CUSDcommunity.com.


Spaces are limited, early registration is strongly encouraged. For more information and assistance, contact Community Education at 224-3900.

Kids Express Fall Intersession Camp

LET'S TACO 'BOUT
KIDS EXPRESS FALL BREAK CAMP


September 27, 2021 - October 11, 2021
6:30 am - 6:00 pm

Grades K-6

$38.00 daily


Locations:

Basha Elementary, CTA Goodman, Hull Elementary & Weinberg Gifted Academy

OCT. 11 ONLY: CTA Liberty and Santan Elementary


Come join the excitement during Kids Express Fall Intersession Camp! Enjoy fun filled days which include art, cooking, construction, active play, games and more. Vendors will provide on-site field trips for additional fun.


Click here to register today!

www.cusdcommunity.com
480-224-3900

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Your Many Choices in Chandler Unified

CUSD Consistently Earns High Marks

Chandler Unified School District has been ranked the #1 district in the Phoenix area by Niche.com. Chandler Unified School District - ENROLL TODAY!
CUSD Ranked #1 by Niche.com

ENROLL in CUSD Today!

In Chandler Unified School District we focus on whole-child potential. Academic achievement is a high priority in the district as evidenced by test scores which exceed state and national averages. We pride ourselves on providing outstanding educational programs at all grade levels. Chandler Unified School District offers free, full-day Kindergarten, and is an open enrollment district. Click here to enroll in Chandler Unified School District.