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Welcome to the Home of the Cowboys

Welcome to the website of Willcox High School, Home of the Cowboys! We are located in Cochise County, Arizona, in the quaint historic town of Willcox, and we serve students in grades 9 through 12. Though we are a small school, we take pride in providing an excellent education for our students that will empower them to become responsible and compassionate adults and prepare them to succeed in a highly technological world.

In addition to our outstanding academic curriculum, we also offer special education and gifted education programs to cater to specific student needs as well as a variety of clubs and athletic activities for those seeking extracurricular opportunities.

A Message from our Principal


Welcome to the 2015-2016 school year. Hopefully students and parents alike are aware of what Willcox High School’s (WHS) expectations are for successful daily operation, and hopefully, we will have another great school year together. Each student body class (403 students) met with Ms. Hall and myself regarding the dress code, academics, student behavior, and other important student points of emphasis. Students overall have been complying with our expectations. WHS administrative team, counselor, faculty, staff, and I all expect this year to be excellent where effort is required!

In order for our students to be successful in the 21st century, they must embrace the “flat world’ concept of education. That is, WHS students must have the ability to balance academic achievement, technology, communication skills, meaningful civic engagement and service experiences with the social and personal demands of being a high school student in 2015-2016. This is what the world expects of today’s students. It is a lot to expect, however, we understand that the higher the expectation, the higher the achievement.

We challenge the students to find balance in their high school experience. Many times we tell students to get involved and that is part of finding balance. Getting involved in a variety of activities helps one to be more “well rounded” which is important. Balance is the ability to juggle all of the responsibilities of school, work, sports, family, and other commitments while enjoying the journey. Taking rigorous course work will help prepare a student for college, playing varsity sports at a high intensity is the best way to improve the chances of playing at the next level, working many hours to earn money or gain experience is a great way to get ahead. Once that balance is found, students will enjoy the journey that much more, and will ultimately take that knowledge with them beyond the walls of Willcox High School.

In spring 2015, the Arizona Department of Education (ADE) administered for the first time Arizona’s Measurement of Educational Readiness to Inform Teaching (AzMERIT) to assess proficiency on the new Arizona College and Career Ready Standards. The AzMERIT measures English language arts in grades 3-11, and math in grades 3-8 and following completion of high school coursework in algebra I, geometry, and algebra II. The Arizona Department of Education recently released the statewide annual AzMERIT report. The unofficial scores are not a surprise. In fact, they reiterate what the NAEP (a rigorous multi-state assessment) results have shown for years. Our proficiency rates are low. However, now we have more accurate information about how our students are doing so we are better able to help them succeed. If we want our students to be globally competitive and for Arizona to be the best place to live and do business, we need to embrace these results and take action to make education the top priority in our state. We know there is still a lot of work to be done to ensure more students are proficient in every grade. We are confident that if we provide our educators and students with the necessary resources and support, AzMERIT scores will improve. As the state board of education meets to consider the recommended cut scores, we encourage them to keep the bar high and give meaningful information to teachers and parents that indicates if their children are ready for the next grade or college and career. Once the board has adopted cut scores, individual score reports will be prepared for Arizona’s students and parents. This is expected to happen in late October or early November. 

What this means for us is that we need to, and will, focus on continuously improving how we operate as a school. We have clearly explained our expectations of the students, and we intend to maintain high expectations of ourselves, as well, as we focus on continuously improving.

We want your student to be happy and successful at WHS, and we believe you play a key role. The young adult who knows that his or her family has an interest in and supports the school program will almost always have fewer problems in school and will enjoy greater success.

Thank you to all of the parents who came for open house on August 18. It was good to see so many parents in support of their child’s education. I know our teachers appreciate the kind of parental support that compliments their efforts in the classroom.

The "change" is back, underway and exciting. Challenge day programs have touched the lives of over a million teens and adults nationwide. Challenge day is very powerful, high-energy programs in which youth and adult participants are guided through a series of experiential learning processes. Challenge day programs are designed to unite the members of the school and/or community to empower them to carry the themes of the program back to the greater school population. Challenge day also successfully addresses issues of violence, teasing, social oppression, racism, harassment, conflict management, suicide, peer pressure, alcohol, and drugs. All WHS students and staff had the opportunity to not only witness this program but took part last year. Thanks to our S3 grant this special program was able to take place once again this year with our freshmen class and new students! Please ask your son or daughter what the “change” meant to them? Thank you for “being the change” in our world!

Success in school, at any level, depends on several things. One of the most important of these is the communication and collaboration that takes place between student’s parents and their child’s teacher. With this in mind, I would like to make you aware of several things. The first is parent teacher conferences, which will take place on October 6 and 7 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:15 p.m. Another great tool to help you keep on top of your child’s progress is to check their grades on line (this information was mailed to you or picked up during open house). If you have internet capability at home or work, you can access this information on a daily basis. If you need help with this, please call the high school office 520-384-8601. Another great tool is the teachers e-mail or calling them.

Your continued support enables us to provide the best education possible for your child. Let us work together to strengthen the partnership between school and home. I look forward to the new school year, and I encourage you to work hard and to get involved. If I can be of assistance, please stop by my office or call the school. 

"Go Cowboys and Cowgirls"

Jeff Thompson
Jeff Thompson