From The Principal

Lietz Picture

Dear Chieftain Families,

We have made it to the last two weeks of the school year. Though it finally feels as though summer may have begun, we have a lot of work to do as we finish strong. We have our Underclassmen Awards Breakfast on Wednesday, June 5th at 7:45 am. Students invited will have already received a letter to take home. Before that, our seniors have graduation practice at the O’rena at 9:45am on Monday and Cap and Gown pick up at 9:30 am in the Auditorium on Tuesday, June 4. Seniors will enter through door 11 and go directly to the auditorium and then directly out again! Prom is Thurs-day and Commencement Exercises on Sunday, June 9 at 3:30 pm will come more quickly than you can imagine! We’re looking forward to a wonderful Ceremony at Oakland University.

We also have our underclassmen final exams in two weeks! It is a little different this year, as we go through Friday. The schedule is:

Wednesday, June 12: 1st and 2nd Hour Exams (release at 10:28)
Thursday, June 13: 3rd and 4th Hour Exams (release at 10:28)
Friday, June 14: 5th and 6th Hour Exams (release at 10:28)

And that will be a wrap for the school year for most of our students. For some, summer is a great time for students to get caught up on classes that didn’t end as we had hoped and for still others, it is a chance to get ahead! If your student lost credit, recovering those credits must be a priority! If your student lost a credit during 1st Semester, you have already received a letter home stating the need to take summer school. If they fail a class during 2nd semester, your student’s report card is going to be the indication that they need to take a summer school class to make that up! Though there is room in the schedule for a student to lose a credit, if that credit loss is in Math (4 credits), English (4 credits), Social Studies (3 credits), Science (3 credits), World Language (2 credits) or the 1 credit requirements in VPAA or Physical Education your student may be below the mandated number of credits required by the State of Michigan and UCS Board of Education despite being on track in the total number of credits needed to graduate. It’s important that you and your student know where they stand.

There’s certainly no value lost in students reading and studying over the summer. And for some students, they may want to consider some of our UCS Credit Forward Options. This does not re-lieve them of the total credit obligations (they cannot graduate early), but it can help a student get a leg up toward Advanced Placement classes or career-specific courses like our CTE and arts pro-grams. The summer is also a time to relax from our regimented schedule during the year without losing that quest for learning that can be difficult to get back in the fall.

Finally, the summer is a great time to get ahead on preparation for the SAT. I have shared the data on using Khan Academy to improve SAT Scores. Just 6 hours of studying makes dramatic improvement. That August test is right around the corner, but there’s still plenty of time to put the effort in to see marked improvement. For our juniors specifically, and our sophomores as well, use of this time can be transformative. At registra-tion in August, junior students will have the opportunity to sign up for PSAT/NMSQT Assessment which qualifies them for the National Merit Competition, but also serves as a great practice test for the SAT later in the spring! Summer prep on Khan Academy can make all of this more manageable and more meaningful!

Summer also begins the college application process for our Juniors. Juniors should be using the Naviance Col-lege Match system and figuring out where they’re planning on applying in the fall and what that entails. It’s never too soon to start writing those personal statements and taking a crack at the Common App questions which were just announced. Juniors who have their college application process ready at the start of the year can use their time in the fall to focus on classes and not on those dreaded applications! It is my goal to contin-ue to increase the number of early application and early action applicants. Those students have an increasing chance of getting those coveted spots in competitive institutions in the state and around the nation. You can work with your students on Naviance by going to

Utica will see some construction this summer with work on our stadium, our tennis courts and our main gym. These projects are either a part of annual maintenance or as a result of the bond this community passed last November. We are continually grateful for the commitment of the Board of Education to use its limited re-sources to make sure that Utica High School remains a premier learning environment for our students.

Our Back-to-School Registration dates are set. You will receive more information in our August newsletter including an alpha list of when you should show up and picture information for Lifetouch Photography. Our registration will be from 8am – 11am on the days below:

Seniors – Tuesday, August 20
Juniors – Wednesday, August 21
Sophomores – Thursday, August 22

Students will be able to purchase parking passes (juniors and seniors only), homecoming tickets, yearbooks, athletic passes and more on those dates. Registration will be in the Cafeteria with entrance through Door 5 (Main Gym Entrance).

It’s been a wonderful year! Our Chieftains continue to impress me and live up to the incredible mantle of re-sponsibility that is their namesake. I’m sure they will finish strong, they will make the most out of these last two weeks, and head into the summer with their heads high! I look forward to having them all back for the 2019-20 school year!


Tom Lietz 

Orange Utica U

Utica High School Vision Statement: 
Empowering students to reach their full potential as members of a global community. 

Utica High School Mission Statement:  
The mission of Utica High School is to develop successful learners with the support of our community of educators, students, and parents. Our diverse student body will have an equitable, rigorous, and comprehensive education in a safe and supportive environment that promotes self-discipline, motivation, and excellence in learning. We aim to cultivate individual learners with active and creative minds, and a sense of understanding and compassion for others.


For the spring of 2018, eleventh graders will take the Michigan Merit Examination (MME).  The MME consists of the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) as the state administered college assessment and the ACT WorkKeys for College and Career readiness.  Additionally, the Michigan Student Test of Educational Progress (M-STEP) assesses for science and social studies.  The tenth grade students will be given the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (PSAT) 10 assessment for College and Career Readiness.

To ensure all tenth and eleventh grade students have every opportunity to be successful on their particular assessment(s), the following testing schedule will be implemented for Tuesday, April 10, 2018 and Wednesday, April 11, 2018.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018: 11th GRADE TESTING
7:20 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. (Standard Testing Time)

11th grade students will report their home school at 7:10 a.m. and will be dismissed after testing.
10th and 12th grade students will report to school at 12:30 p.m.
Afternoon classes, 12:35 p.m. – 2:14 p.m., will be held for 10th and 12th grade students.
All MST/CSI classes are cancelled.
All shared-time programs are cancelled.
Lunch WILL NOT be served to students on this day.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018: 10th and 11th GRADE TESTING
7:20 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. (Standard Testing Time)
Regular school day for 10th and 11th grade students.
12th grade students will report to school at 12:00 p.m.
Afternoon classes, 12:15 p.m. – 2:14 p.m., will be held for all 10th, 11th, and 12th grade students.
All MST/CSI classes are cancelled.
All shared-time programs are cancelled.
Lunch will not be served to 12th grade students on this day. 

This schedule is an additional measure to provide our students every opportunity for success.  Additionally, it ensures that every student’s time in school is time well spent.  For more information regarding these assessments, refer to the following links:

SAT and PSAT 10:

ACT WorkKeys:

Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.