Displaying items by tag: Indian hills middle school

Enthusiastic Indian Hills Middle students cut short their summers to take part in the grand opening of their newly remodeled campus at a ribbon-cutting ceremony held two days before the start of school.

“This newly renovated school is for our students. It’s all for the students,” Principal Doug Graham told the crowd of parents, alumni, teachers and community members who also flocked to see the school’s bright, colorful new interior. “The community was generous enough to provide the funding for this school, and in turn I challenge our students to express their appreciation by dedicating themselves to being the best they can be for every moment they are at Indian Hills Middle.”

If the Warriors, who spent the past year of construction attending classes at the temporary location of Crescent Middle, were eager to return home, the completion of Indian Hills also marks an important milestone for Canyons School District. It is the 13th and final major school improvement project financed with proceeds from a $250 million bond approved by voters in 2010.

In just eight years, the District has rebuilt Alta View and Midvale elementary schools; renovated Albion Middle; built Corner Canyon High and Draper Park Middle; rebuilt Butler and Midvale middle schools, Butler Elementary and Mount Jordan Middle; brought Sandy Elementary up to seismic code; built additions at Hillcrest and Brighton high schools; and installed air-conditioning and heating systems in all schools—all without raising taxes and while maintaining CSD’s AAA bond rating.

For Board of Education President Sherril Taylor—an inaugural member of the Board and lifelong educator who once taught science at Indian Hills—the ribbon-cutting event felt like coming full circle. “It’s an honor to proudly declare that we did everything we said we were going to do,” he said, thanking community members for their support. “When you voted for a bond in 2010, we told you we’d build or renovate 13 schools — and this is the final one. …I have to say that today’s celebration would not be possible without you.”
The renovation was extensive. Among the “as-new” upgrades are: an improved entryway with a security vestibule to enhance safety; a new commons area that is full of natural light and offers a view of the mountains; new classrooms, labs and collaboration spaces; and an expanded kitchen and cafeteria.

Joining students and families in celebrating the new school were Superintendent Dr. Jim Briscoe, Business Administrator Leon Wilcox, Assistant Superintendent Kathryn McCarrie, Rep. LaVar Christensen, R-Draper, representatives from Sandy City and the PTA, and Canyons Education Foundation Board members Suzanne Harrison, Brad Snow, Aaron Metcalfe, and Bill Rappleye.

“What a turnout,” remarked CSD Board member Chad Iverson, “I’ve never seen so many students so excited to get started with school.”

The wind howled and shook the balloons at Indian Hills Middle Thursday as community members gathered to celebrate the beginning of a remodel and addition to the school. But nothing could sweep away students’ excitement to get the project going.

Whoops and cheers accompanied school leaders, administrators, local representatives and members of Canyons’ Board of Education as they ceremoniously turned over a shovel of dirt to mark the beginning of the final project made possible by a $250 million bond approved by voters in 2010. The project is scheduled to be completed for the 2018-2019 school year.

“I have no doubt that many of you wondered if this day would actually be realized,” Canyons Board of Education President Sherril Taylor told the crowd. “Everything we promised you has been done.”

The updated school will feature classrooms and collaboration spaces wired for the high-tech demands of a 21st-century education, it will be reconfigured to be more energy efficient, six new classrooms and a spacious cafeteria and commons area will be added with hallways filled with natural light. The school will be temporarily moved to the former site of Crescent View Middle while construction takes place.

“We’re proud of this new addition to the Sandy community,” Indian Hills Principal Doug Graham said, as students cheered. “We promise you it will be a place of learning, a place of knowledge, a place of true human power.”

Taylor recognized the attendance of representatives from Hogan Construction and FFKR Architects who will be working on the building, as well as District administrators and Rep. LaVar Christiansen, R-Draper; Utah State Board of Education representative Kathleen Riebe; Region 17 PTA Director Betty Shaw; Sandy Chamber of Commerce CEO and Canyons Education Foundation member Greg Summerhays; Draper City Councilman Bill Rappleye; Canyons Education Foundation President John Martindell; and Sandy Chief Administrative Officer Scott Bond.

The remodel is the last of 13 projects promised by the Canyons Board of Education with the passage of a $250 million bond. In seven years since the bond was passed, Canyons has built a new Corner Canyon High, rebuilt Midvale Elementary, renovated Albion Middle, added seismic improvements to Sandy Elementary, a new Draper Park Middle, rebuilt Butler Middle, a new Butler Elementary, additions to Brighton and Hillcrest high schools, and rebuilt Mount Jordan Middle. A new Alta View Elementary and Midvale Middle are currently under construction.

Additionally, the District added air conditioning to every school that did not previously have cooling air; security vestibules at all elementary schools; a soccer field, tennis courts and athletic fields near Brighton high; upgraded Alta High and made other improvements to Canyons facilities. 

If BJ Cox were to affix a moral to his music teaching skills, it would be that hard work pays off.

For two years, the Indian Hills music leader and his students have tried out for the State Junior High Band Festival. Two years in a row, the band didn’t make it — but Cox and his students didn’t give up. Each time the band wasn’t selected, they improved, little by little. Now, Indian Hills’ concert band has been chosen as one of the top 15 bands to perform at the State Junior High Band Festival on March 17 at the University of Utah.

“My expectation of the kids is always to be better than you were the day before,” Cox says. “You always want to be the best you can be, and do the best you can, always, and we always want to be going forward. It’s not perfection on the first day.”

Cox joined Indian Hills four years ago as the school’s music teacher, but his work began even before he set foot in the classroom. At the beginning of the school year, every year, Cox hosts a barbecue for his students, their families, and anyone else in the community who wants to attend. His entire program has 250 people, of which 63 belong to the concert band.

“Not only do we teach them how to play, but we teach them how to think musically,” Cox says. “It isn’t just ‘Mr. Cox’s band program’ here, I believe everyone belongs and everyone has a part.”

Cox’s concert band auditioned to perform in the Utah Music Educators Association State Junior High Band Festival by playing “Kights of Destiny” for a panel of UMEA judges. As winners of the top 15 spot, the students will perform at Libby Gardner Hall on the University of Utah Campus on March 17 — and they’ll have some bragging rights as one of the two school districts from the Salt Lake valley to be participating.

One of the ways Cox has been successful is through his understanding of the power of music for his students. Music helps with brain development, self-confidence, professional experiences and resiliency, he says, so he does all he can to make sure his students receive the best opportunities available.

As a music student, Cox made it a point to learn how to master every instrument his students play — from the drums to the piccolo. He models the best techniques and sounds for every instrument and expects his students to make measured improvements.

On top of that, Cox arranges for professional musicians to regularly visit his classroom to give his students pointers and special mentoring sessions. His efforts have not been in vain. As his students learn, Cox does too. 

“I have had some of the best players in the state and country right here in my room,” Cox said between classes at Indian Hills one recent afternoon. “I ‘ve learned a ton from them.”
Canyons School District students captured 41 awards at the regional science fair, including Grand Champion winner Alexander Cheng who now advances to the Intel International Science & Engineering Fair in Phoenix. Cheng, a ninth grader at Hillcrest High, also took first place in the Engineering & Computer Science division and earned a special, sponsored award for his winning entry: “Using Machine Learning and Image Segmentation to Analyze Retinal Blood Vessel Densities.” His project is among just six from the Salt Lake Valley to proceed to the international fair.

Two CSD middle schoolers — Paige Blair from Indian Hills Middle, and Steele Smith from Draper Park Middle — were named Broadcom Masters finalists, which means they’re invited to compete at the national Broadcom science fair

Canyons District students competed against hundreds of their elementary, middle and high school peers from surrounding districts and private schools. Students in grades 5 through 12 were eligible for half-a-million dollars in scholarships and cash prizes.

Intel ISEF Grand Champion Winner

Alexander Cheng, Hillcrest High, “Using Machine Learning and Image Segmentation to Analyze Retinal Blood Vessel Densities.”

Broadcom Masters

Paige Blair, Indian Hills Middle, “Liar, Liar, Eggs on Fire!”

Steele Smith, Draper Park Middle, “Optimizing Velocity from a Magnetic Linear Accelerator.”


Behavioral & Social Sciences

First, Paige Blair, Indian Hills Middle, “Liar, Liar, Eggs on Fire!”

Honorable Mention, Zynnia Beddoes, Sunrise Elementary, "Dexteri-Tee Experiment."

Biology & Biochemistry

Honorable Mention, Evan VanBrocklin, Butler Middle, “Effect of Repeated Exposure to Antibiotics on Bacterial Resistance.”

Honorable Mention, Cameron Jessop, Sunrise Elementary, "Got Gas? The Glycemic Index and the Production of Methane Gas."

Honorable Mention, Kaleolani Kirby, Silver Mesa Elementary, “Which Grade is the Grossest?”

Honorable Mention, Rian Liew, Sunrise Elementary, "Yeast Fermentation."


Honorable Mention, Ryan Chen, Midvale Middle, “No potassium = Stop?”

Honorable Mention, Avyrlie Smith, Silver Mesa Elementary, “Bakin' Bacon.”

Honorable Mention, Gabrielle Jensen, Albion Middle, “Liquid Evaporation.”

Honorable Mention, Ryan Bartholomew, Butler Elementary, “Are Your Pajamas Safe?”

Earth & Environmental Sciences

Fourth, Harley Aposhian, Butler Middle, “Tornado Alley.”

Energy, Chemical & Physical

Honorable Mention, Ella Ogden, Albion Middle, "Which Popcorn Pops Best?"

Honorable Mention, Paris Rasmussen, Butler Middle, "Solar Ovens in Different Weather."

Engineering Materials & Biomedical

Third, Sadie Cole, Quail Hollow Elementary, "Strength of stitch."

Fourth, Sam Timmerman & Ty Christensen, Oakdale Elementary, "Shake Rattle but NOT Roll."

Medicine & Health Sciences

Honorable Mention, Grace Mansouri, Sunrise Elementary, "Do You Hear What I Hear?"

Physics, Astronomy & Math

Honorable Mention, Eric Snaufer, Sunrise Elementary, "How Does Temperature Affect Pitch?"

Honorable Mention, Diana Alzerreca, Park Lane Elementary, "Magnetic Force Fields."

Plant Sciences

First, Marianne Liu, Sunrise Elementary, "Jalapeno Heat."

Honorable Mention, Timothy Holt, Sunrise Elementary, "Worms and Plants."


Energy: Chemical & Physical

Third, Grace Wang, Midvale Middle, “Solar Cells Put to the Temp.”

Engineering: Electrical & Computer Science

Second, Wentao Zhang, Midvale Middle, “Exploring Computer/Network Security through Design and Implement of Three New Encryption Algorithms.”

Medicine & Health Sciences

Fourth, Anya Tiwari, Midvale Middle, “Nanotechnology in Diabetes.”

Physics, Astronomy & Math

First, Steele Smith, Draper Park Middle, “Optimizing Velocity from a Magnetic Linear Accelerator.”



Fourth, Haylie DeMercy, Corner Canyons High, “Tropospheric Ozone Electrochemical Cell.

Engineering, Electrical & Computer Science

First, Alexander Cheng, Hillcrest High, “Using Machine Learning and Image Segmentation to Analyze Retinal Blood Vessel Densities.”

Medicine & Health Sciences

First, Sai Preethika Parsawar, Hillcrest High, "MS of MS with CSF."

Third, Alexander Sun, Hillcrest High, "Quantitative Measures for Intervertebral Disc Health and Physiology Using Magnetic Resonance Imaging."

Physics, Astronomy & Math

Fourth, Alan Zhao, Hillcrest High, “Traffic Efficiency Study of Car Spacing at a Red Light.”


American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), Junior Division
Victor Petrov, Midvale Middle, “Stall Prevention and Recovery.”

American Society of Civil Engineers, Senior Division
Alan Zhao, Hillcrest High, “Traffic Efficiency Study of Car Spacing at a Red Light.”

Intel Excellence in Computer Science
Alexander Cheng, Hillcrest High, “Using Machine Learning and Image Segmentation to Analyze Retinal Blood Vessel Densities.”

Recursion Pharmaceuticals 
Anya Tiwari, Midvale Middle, "Nanotechnology in Diabetes."

US Air Force, Junior Division
Steele Smith, Draper Park Middle, "Optimizing Velocity from a Magnetic Linear Accelerator."

US Air Force, Senior Division

Sai Preethika Parsawar, Hillcrest High, “MS of MS with CSF.”

US Navy, Junior Division
Steele Smith, Draper Park Middle, “Optimizing Velocity from a Magnetic Linear Accelerator.”

US Navy, Senior Division
Sai Preethika Parsawar, Hillcrest High, “MS of MS with CSF.”

Utah Department of Transportation, Senior Division
Alan Zhao, Hillcrest High, “Traffic Efficiency Study of Car Spacing at a Red Light.”





Parents of fifth-graders enrolled in Canyons District's Dual-Language Immersion Programs have been invited to a meeting on Wednesday, Jan. 20 to learn about the transition from elementary school to middle school.

At the 6 p.m. event at Mount Jordan Middle, 9351 S. Mountaineer Lane (300 East), the Canyons curriculum team that oversees the dual-language immersion programs also will share information about DLI instruction in secondary schools.

In addition, information will be presented about the online intent-to-continue process parents will be asked to complete in order for their children to continue in the programs. 

At the middle school level, Spanish programs are being provided at Mount Jordan, Union and Midvale; French classes are being taught at Draper Park and Butler; and Mandarin Chinese is being offered at Draper Park, Butler and Indian Hills.

Students who seek to participate in a dual-language immersion program at a school other than the one assigned to them by geographic boundaries should submit an open-enrollment application to the school they wish to attend as soon as possible. Per state law, the Standard Open Enrollment Application forms will be accepted by Canyons schools until Feb. 19. Filling out the permit request does not guarantee placement in the DLI program at that school.  

Questions?  Please call the CSD Instructional Supports Department at 801 826 5045
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