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From The Principal

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Lietz Picture

Good afternoon Utica High Families,

I’m sure many of you watched the UCS Board of Education meeting last night with anticipation.  As your student’s Principal, I am honored with the task of taking that vision and implementing it with the same focus on opportunities for student social-emotional and academic growth that have been hallmarks of excellence at Utica High School.  I confidently accept this task because I’m collaborating with my incredible team of educators, support staff and administrators.  We have been working hard, planning through the summer, and we are ready to work with our students and our community to have a successful 2020-21 school year. 

We look forward to working with you as we begin the new year with remote instruction.  Our teachers are committed to delivering quality education to our students and making the connections that make the difference in your child’s learning. If you choose to remain at Utica High School in remote learning, you do not need to do anything. Your student’s schedule is already being built and teachers will remain the same through the semester, even if we transition back to in-person learning. If you choose to go into the Utica Community Schools Virtual Academy for the 1st semester, that choice must be made by Friday, August 14 by following the instructions here.

You can expect frequent communications from us as we look forward to the start of 2020-21. Here is some information that I would like to share with you at this time:

  • While we are in the office, we are limiting visitors to those who have a direct reason to visit the school. Please call our office for an appointment. You will be asked to do a pre-screening, wear a face mask, use a hand sanitizer located inside our door and observe social distancing. While building access is being limited, please know that we are always happy to talk with you and answer your questions over the phone or via Email. Our office number is 586-797-2200.
  • We anticipate student schedules being e-mailed to you on August 28. For health and safety reasons, there will not be formal Chieftain registration Days.
  • Secondary students will follow a block schedule when we open remotely and will remain in a block schedule as we move to in-person learning. Instead of having all six classes for one hour every day, students will have three classes for two hours each day. This will help students with focus and managing work. On the A day, students would take what we normally called 1st, 2nd, and 3rd hour. On the B day, students will take what we normally call 4th, 5th, and 6th hour. You can see a graphic representation of what this will look like at this website.
  • Every student this year will be receive a district-issued device. These devices will have a single sign-on for your student and will be loaded with apps and resources that our teachers will be using to support learning. We will be sharing the process with you shortly on how the devices will be distributed to your students.

We are excited to be partnering with you again as we look forward to the start of school on September 1. Both our school and district will be communicating with you further so that you can have a better understanding of the supports your child will have and what their days will look like. There is already a great deal of information on the UCS Website at this link.

If you have any questions, please feel free to respond to this e-mail or call the office at 586-797-2200. 

As I said above, this is the first of a series of communications on back-to-school. There are hundreds of questions and over the next few days I will do my best to answer them. We will continue to strive for normal and to carve out our new normal as we work through the challenges of this pandemic. I look forward to continued dialogue and interaction.  As always, please look to our webpage ( for information as well as our Facebook (, Twitter (@uticaprincipal) and Instagram (@uticaprincipal) accounts for more updates.   


Tom Lietz