Adams 12 Five Star Schools has earned a $207,000 grant from Great West Bank to provide resources, both software and hardware, for personal financial literacy (PFL) and economics professional development across grades K-12.
One teacher from each elementary building will receive PFL training, and will then train and support other teachers in the school. Social Studies teachers at the middle school level and 30 Economics teachers at the high school level will receive resources and professional development in PFL.
Today (Friday, Nov. 1), Adams 12 Five Star Schools requested in writing that the clerk and recorders of Adams and Broomfield counties withdraw Amy Speers as a candidate for the office of Director District 4. Speers has chosen not to submit a notice of withdrawal. The district’s understanding is that county and state election officials, who implement statewide election procedures, will determine how votes will be processed in this matter.
After receiving an inquiry on Tuesday, Oct. 29, the district’s designated election official determined Speers does not live in the director district for which she is running. This makes her ineligible to run for such office, and the district is obligated under election law to request her name be withdrawn.
All candidates must sign an affidavit confirming they fully meet the qualifications to run for the director district they intend to represent. The district received the signed affidavit from Speers dated Aug. 28. Additionally, it is the district’s practice to verify a candidate’s eligibility. An oversight was made, and the candidate’s residency was not verified. The district believes both parties operated in good faith.
Some misinformation has been circulated concerning Speers’ certification as a candidate. Speers picked up a petition packet at the district offices on Aug. 7, at which time the district’s designated election official was out of the state. No communications were made by the district’s designated election official on or near Aug. 8 concerning Speers’ residency or her satisfaction of legal requirements to hold office.
Speers submitted her petition with signatures to the designated election official on Aug. 28. The deadline for submitting petitions was Aug. 30. The designated election official verified signatures on Speers’ petition on Aug. 29. The mistake made is that the district’s election official didn’t verify Speers’ residency. The designated election official then certified Speers’ candidacy to the clerk and recorders of Adams and Broomfield counties on Sept. 6, 2013.
Based on an inquiry received this morning (Tuesday, Oct. 29), Adams 12 Five Star Schools has verified that Amy Speers, a candidate running for the district’s board of education in Director District 4, lives outside the boundaries of the specific director district for which she is running. Candidates must be a resident of the director district they intend to represent.
The district’s designated election official has informed Speers of her ineligibility, and has made the clerk and recorders of both Adams County and the City and County of Broomfield aware of the ineligibility.
All candidates must sign an affidavit confirming they are eligible to run for the director district they intend to represent. The district received the signed affidavit from Speers. Additionally, it is the district’s practice to verify a candidate’s eligibility. An oversight was made, and the candidate’s residency was not verified. The district believes both parties operated in good faith.
Moving forward, the district will implement additional measures to confirm the address of each candidate has been checked, and that it’s been verified that the candidate lives in the boundaries of the specific director district for which they are running.
This does not impact the election for Director District 3 which includes four candidates.
We’d like to remind you that Adams 12 Five Star Schools is launching a new service that will enhance communication by allowing the Five Star District to deliver important information such as school closures, snow days, canceled activities or other school-related activities to you via text messaging.
If we have a wireless phone number on file for you and you haven’t already opted in to receive text alerts, you may receive a one-time opt-in invitation on Wednesday, Oct. 30. This is to comply with wireless carrier requirements and to protect you against unsolicited text messages.
To opt in now, simply text “yes” to 68453. To opt out of all text messages from your child’s school and Adams 12 Five Star Schools, text “stop” to 68453 or visit www.schoolmessenger.com/tm.
If you receive an error message when you opt-in, your provider may require you to contact them directly to allow short code/SMS text messages to be received on your device.
We anticipate our text alert subscribers will receive approximately three alerts each month. Please note, although the district doesn’t charge for this service, standard text messaging/data rates may apply according to your plan.
Adams 12 Five Star Schools is joining school districts across the nation for Digital Citizenship Week Oct. 21-25. The week is an opportunity to engage students, teachers and families in thinking critically, behaving safely and participating responsibly online.
Free resources to reinforce digital safety and responsibility are available here.
Digital Citizenship Week is sponsored by Common Sense Media, a national nonprofit dedicated to helping kids thrive with media and technology.
If you have a child entering kindergarten for the 2014-2015 school year, get a jump start on planning by attending the district's "Countdown to Kindergarten" resource fair on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 6:30-8 p.m. at the Educational Support Center, 1500 E. 128th Ave.
Parents will have the opportunity to learn about readiness and learning expectations for kindergartners, Choice options, enrollment and much more. Representatives from the Admissions Office; Transportation; Before, After School and Summer Enrichment (BASE); Nutrition Services; and Learning Services will be available for parents to learn more about these services and ask questions.
A kindergarten overview presentation will start at 7 p.m. that evening.
Amendment 66 is a statewide ballot measure related to education funding. The amendment appears on this year's ballot for the Nov. 5 General Election. Colorado has a Fair Campaign Practices Act that governs the district's involvement in election matters. In short, Adams 12 Five Star Schools is allowed to present a factual summary of the ballot issue, but we are not allowed to advocate either for or against any election matter. As part of this factual summary, it's also permitted by law to include both arguments in favor and in opposition of this amendment.
To view the factual summary, click here. Please remember to exercise your right to vote in this mail-in election.
To view the factual summary in Spanish, click here.
Northglenn High School is offering free community enrichment classes to all Adams 12 Five Star Schools parents and community members. The classes take place in the evening from 6 to 8 p.m. at the school and are taught by Northglenn High School teachers. Classes are limited to 30 participants, so register early at http://goo.gl/tDbBa0 or by calling Kate Weber at 720-972-4641.
- iPads in the Classroom – Wednesday, Oct. 23
- Getting a Job – Tuesday, Oct. 29
- Meals on a Budget – Monday, Nov. 4
- Web Tools for Presentations – Wednesday, Nov. 13
- 21st Century Spanish Class – Tuesday, Nov. 19
- Parent Empowerment – Tuesday, Dec. 10
For more information about the classes, click here.
Our Adams 12 Five Star Schools Board of Education designated last week as Classified Employee Week, but several schools are recognizing the contributions of our classified staff members this week instead because parent/teacher conferences consumed much of last week. I'd like to join our schools in thanking our classified staff members for their hard work and service to the students, staff and parents of the Five Star community.
"Classified staff," for those of you not familiar with school district jargon, are the support staff personnel in our organization. They include our bus drivers and mechanics; plumbers, electricians, HVAC technicians, and other personnel who keep our schools in good repair; custodians; paraprofessionals and teachers aids; secretaries and office managers; our cooks and food service personnel; campus supervisors at our high school campuses; the BASE staff who engage our young children in fun play and interaction before and after the school day; and a variety of others in important roles supporting safe and productive learning and working environments for students and staff.
I've witnessed countless examples of classified staff making a significant positive impact upon our students and staff in the first two months of the school year. I'd love to share all of them, but a few examples will help paint the picture of how these staff members contribute to student success in the Five Star Schools:
-- I joined the kindergartners at Eagleview Elementary for lunch on their first day of school back in August and marveled at the how the staff in the kitchen and cafeteria helped that group of excited and high energy students navigate their way through the lunch line, and eat at least some of their lunch, in between all of the start of school year social conversations. In addition to serving students a nutritious meal with fresh fruits and vegetables, the kitchen and cafeteria staff take on a variety of other roles, including opening milk cartons for kindergartners struggling to figure that out and counseling students to make new friends and treat others with respect.
Sometimes those interactions over a meal become more complicated, as I saw later that day at Eagleview. One of the students shared that he had not had a happy summer, as his father had unexpectedly passed away a few weeks before school. Engaging in difficult and sensitive conversations like this one -- even if brief -- is not part of the job description for our Nutrition Services staff, but they step in to provide support and reassurance in a manner that reinforces to students that all of our staff care about their success and well-being.
-- In early September, I rode along with Heather, one of the district's bus drivers, and Anna, a paraprofessional assigned to her bus to help the students with disabilities on that route. The students had a variety of disabilities that required the assistance of district transportation, including students in wheelchairs, students who cannot communicate verbally, and students with cognitive impairments.
Heather and Anna's route is a long one -- I believe it was about 45 minutes from when the first student boarded the bus to when she arrived at her school. It requires careful driving over many streets and highways in our community, and gentle but firm management of student behavior so that the students remain seated and remain quiet -- especially at intersections with railroad tracks. (Anna and a couple of students had to remind me of the "no talking" rule at one of those intersections . . . .)
The long bus ride also creates the opportunity to build deep and meaningful relationships between Heather, Anna, and the students they support. I saw firsthand how excited many of the students on that route were to get on the bus, and the excitement was driven by their eagerness to reconnect with Heather and Anna, their special friends and trusted adults. The students shared stories with Heather and Anna regarding their pets, their siblings, video games, and their favorite TV shows and movies; and these two ladies helped these students start their school day in a positive place because of their genuine care and concern for the children and active dialogue with them.
-- Over the past year, I've had several conversations with a father and mother who invested hundreds of hours to sponsor a huge fundraising event in August to benefit a variety of charitable organizations, including the Five Star Education Foundation. Their son, who attends one of our middle schools, lost his eyesight a couple of years ago as a complication of his battle with cancer, and the parents organized the fundraiser to help purchase technology to support students with vision impairments and other disabilities.
Technology has made a huge difference for their child in adapting to his life without sight, but the parents made clear that technology is just one of many supports that have allowed their son to thrive academically, socially, and learn to play the drums and guitar. In particular, they pointed to a paraprofessional who has worked closely with their son so that he becomes proficient in using adaptive technologies and continues his academic success. In an era in which our society clamors for more and more technology, gadgets and devices, this story reinforces that a high quality education cannot be provided to our students without the support of caring, committed and talented adults. I am grateful that this student has such support from this paraprofessional -- and am grateful that students and staff throughout the district have the active support and assistance of our classified staff members.
I hope that you'll join me -- this week, and throughout the year -- in taking a minute to thank the classified staff members who support your child, or your work as a teacher or administrator in the system. We are fortunate to have so many people in these roles -- like the ones I've described here -- who are so deeply invested in supporting a positive and productive learning environment for our students.
The Adams 12 Five Star Schools Board of Education honors board member Fred Schaefer for his eight years of service to the district. The Five Star community is welcome to join the board in recognizing Dr. Schaefer at a reception this Wednesday, Oct. 16 at 6 p.m. in the Aspen Room of the Educational Support Center, 1500 E. 128th Ave. in Thornton. Dr. Schaefer is term-limited and will leave the board after serving as a director since 2005.