Principal's Message

Welcome to University High School!
A Magnet School Of Distinction
Thomas Ott

Hello Cougars and Cougar Parents!  

I am thrilled to announce that we received word this afternoon that BOTH our International Baccalaureate and our Performing Arts Magnet programs were named as 2023 Schools of Distinction by Magnet Schools of America!


To receive a national merit award, members of Magnet Schools of America must submit a detailed application that is scored by a panel of educators. These schools are judged and scored on their demonstrated ability to raise student academic achievement, promote racial and socioeconomic diversity, provide integrated curricula and instruction, and create strong family and community partnerships that enhance the school’s magnet theme.

We also receive feedback regarding each program that provide some notes and comments. 

Some highlights from the IB program evaluation include comments from the reviewers such as:

  • “The application includes a student diversity plan or description that addresses specific school-wide and classroom strategies that promote the exchange of ideas and collaboration between students of different ethnicities and/or gender.”
  • “The application provided evidence that describes several innovative instructional practice, approach, or philosophy; and is demonstrated in all areas.”
  • “The school offers extensive professional development specific to the theme, all licensed staff have received training and it is embedded into professional learning communities.”
  • “Great work. Continue to work towards narrowing achievement gaps for all subgroups.”
  • “Awards have been earned by staff, students, and school-wide recognition has been received.”

Some highlights from the PFA program evaluation include great recognition of the parental and community involvement in the program resulting from the work done over the past couple of years with our PFA advisory board and parent board.  The reviewers also recognized the awards and accolades earned from with all of our performing arts tracks over the past year as well!

These recognitions are incredible and shared amongst our entire Cougar Family, our students, our parents, and our community for without everyone’s understanding that ALL students are OUR students, these recognitions would not occur.  It is also due to the incredible dedication and love of what we do from all of those directly involved with our PFA and IB program that push it over the top!  Please make sure that you congratulate each other, your peers, and our students tomorrow for this accomplishment!



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