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Education

  • 'Science is awesome'

    By Andrew Demo, For the Courier

    For 8-year-old Callum Moffatt, a second-grader at Bergen Meadow Elementary School in Evergreen, the third time was the charm at the annual Mountain Area Science Fair.

  • Appeals court upholds decision that teachers’ sick-leave records are public information

    A Jeffco judge’s decision that teachers’ sick-leave records are public information and not confidential personnel information was upheld in a Jan. 14 state Court of Appeals decision.

    Judges Steve Bernard, Robert Hawthorne and Anthony Navarro upheld a 2015 decision against the Jefferson County Education Association, which sought to prevent the Jeffco school district from releasing the names of teachers who were absent from work during “sick-outs” at several schools in late 2014. More than one Jeffco resident had requested the information.

  • School district, teachers union preparing for contract negotiations

    Jeffco Public Schools leaders said Jan. 28 they expect teacher pay and teacher recruitment and retention will be priorities during upcoming contract negotiations with the Jefferson County Education Association.

    The district and teachers union will start contract negotiations Saturday, district human resources director Amy Weber said — less than a year after the last 10-month pact was implemented.

    Negotiations last year on the current union contract encountered several issues, including the contract’s 10-month duration; it expires June 30.

  • Appeals court upholds decision that teachers’ sick-leave records are public information

    A Jeffco judge’s decision that teachers’ sick-leave records are public information and not confidential personnel information was upheld in a Jan. 14 state Court of Appeals decision.

    Judges Steve Bernard, Robert Hawthorne and Anthony Navarro upheld a 2015 decision against the Jefferson County Education Association, which sought to prevent the Jeffco school district from releasing the names of teachers who were absent from work during “sick-outs” at several schools in late 2014. More than one Jeffco resident had requested the information.

  • School board reverses previous decision on financing for new school

     The Jeffco school board directed district staff to start paperwork to issue certificates of participation to fund the building of a new school and finish a later phase of an existing school, both in the northern part of the district.

    In a unanimous vote last Thursday, the board decided to start the process to issue COPs to build a K-8 school in Arvada’s Candelas neighborhood. The board voted 4-1 to do the same for long-planned additions to Sierra Elementary School in Arvada.

  • Things get real for EMS kids with production of musical ‘Fame’

    This year’s Evergreen Middle School production of “Fame” is special in a number of ways:

    • The plot is about real kids rather than fantasy characters.

    • The performances will be at Evergreen High School, where students have the opportunity to perform on a large stage. The EMS production also is forging a stronger relationship between the two theater programs.

    • More than 160 students tried out for the show, which is 20 percent of the student body.

  • Jeffco school district set to hire new communications director

     The Jeffco school board is set to vote Thursday on a new chief communications officer for the district, a position that has been vacant since June.

    The board will vote whether to hire candidate Diana Wilson, a Lakewood resident whose background includes nearly eight years as a spokeswoman for the Westminster Fire Department and a stint serving on Lakewood’s City Council.

  • Wilmot fourth-graders raise funds for water projects in South Sudan

    Wilmot Elementary students swarmed a table in the school on Friday to buy baked goods from a group of fourth-graders aiming to help families on the other side of the world get clean water.

    The bake sale netted $175 for Water for South Sudan, a nonprofit that digs wells so families can have clean water to drink.

  • Former CHS teacher hopes to open charter school

    A former Conifer High teacher is hoping to establish a Conifer-area charter school for sixth-, seventh- and eighth-graders.

    Conifer resident Ashley Sportel said she plans to submit an application for Impact Academy — which she said would use some variation of the “expeditionary” learning model — to the Jeffco school district this year, with an eye toward opening in 2017.

  • Teachers unions played major role in recall effort

     Local and national teachers unions made major donations to the campaign to recall three conservative members of the Jeffco school board, according to financial records ordered released by a state judge.

    Recall critics have said donations from the National Education Association and the Jefferson County Education Association prove that union interests were a guiding force in the ousting of board members John Newkirk, Ken Witt and Julie Williams in the November election.