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Education

  • New school board majority votes to hire law firm

    In a decision that brought boos from the audience, the Jeffco school board’s new majority voted Thursday night to hire an attorney to represent the board — not the school district — with little time for discussion and many unanswered questions.

    Board members Lesley Dahlkemper and Jill Fellman said after the meeting that they dissented not because they oppose the board having its own attorney, but because they objected to the way the motion was introduced and voted on.

  • Online sign-up required to speak at school board meetings

    Parents and community members who wish to speak during the public-comment portion of Jeffco school board meetings now must sign up online.

    The change comes after the board’s Nov. 21 meeting, when newly elected board members Ken Witt, Julie Williams and John Newkirk announced their desire for the board and its meetings to be more accessible to parents.

    It’s the latest in a series of changes, as meeting times have been moved from 6 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., and meeting locations have been moved to different high schools to increase community engagement.

  • A good time with rhyme

    S.T. Coleridge once said that poetry consists of “the best words in the best order.”

    The fourth- and fifth-graders in Donna Sutherland’s gifted-and-talented class at Parmalee Elementary School proved his point Friday during a coffeehouse where they read their own poems to classmates.

    There were no berets or bongo drums a la the 1960s coffeehouses, but there was some finger-snapping as children showed their appreciation for classmates’ work. Definitely no coffee, but the children ate cookies and drank lemonade.

  • New school board members take seats

    Jeffco’s three newly elected school board members wasted no time getting comfortable in their positions at last Thursday’s meeting.

    After Julie Williams, John Newkirk and Ken Witt were sworn in, the new board elected officers, addressed the community and tried to put at ease parents and teachers, who raised concerns during public comment.

    How we got here

    Williams, Newkirk and Witt captured three seats on the Jeffco Board of Education in the Nov. 5 election, dramatically changing the political orientation of the board.

  • The bloom is off

    The Jeffco school board voted unanimously last Thursday night to scrap plans to test and implement the inBloom system for storing student information.

    “It was such a great sense of relief to hear that our voice was heard and that our concerns were recognized,” said Jeffco parent Rachael Stickland.

    The district's controversial plan to test the system was a prominent issue in the campaign for the Nov. 5 school board election, in which three conservative candidates won seats on the five-member board.

  • Stevenson to retire as superintendent of Jeffco Schools

    After more than a decade as head of Jeffco Public Schools, Superintendent Cindy Stevenson announced her plans to retire at last Thursday night’s school board meeting, two days after a slate of conservatives won election to the board.

    “Working with Jeffco as superintendent has been the best 12 years of my life,” Stevenson said at the board meeting. “I’m taking this opportunity to thank the people here tonight and our community that have given me incredible support.”

    Stevenson’s last day will be June 30, 2014.

  • Conservatives take control of Jeffco school board

    Three conservative candidates were victorious over a slate of three progressives in the race for open seats on the Jeffco school board, dramatically changing the board’s political orientation.

    Fallout from the results in the Nov. 5 mail-in election was swift: The existing school board voted to scrap plans for the controversial inBloom data-storage system. Meanwhile, district Superintendent Cindy Stevenson announced her retirement effective in June 2014.

    In final, unofficial results, with about 174,373 ballots counted:

  • Spooky science: EHS classes put Halloween fun into experiments

    “Don’t try this at home — we’re professionals,” Evergreen High chemistry teacher Cheryl Manning quipped to her advanced chemistry students as she prepared her version of Halloween fun last week.

    Manning was attempting to replicate the admonition from the “Mythbusters” television program as she demonstrated two spooky experiments on Oct. 31.

  • King-Murphy kids help the hungry

    The lesson for King-Murphy Elementary’s sixth-graders was simple: It’s important to help others in the community.

    The students learned that lesson through a school-wide food drive. The school donated 750 items to Evergreen Christian Outreach for families in need.

    While the students learned organizational skills, more importantly they learned how good it feels to help others.

    Last Tuesday, the students loaded boxes of canned goods, juices, boxed macaroni and cheese, detergent and other items into a vehicle sent to the school by EChO.

  • A spooky spectacle: Bandana Day celebrates the season at Wilmot

    Evergreen’s glorious weather on Saturday allowed the annual Bandana Day fall carnival at Wilmot Elementary to have some activities outside.

    The carnival has games for all ages, plus haunted houses for children older than 6 and for the tiny ones. Some children wore Halloween costumes, while others wore bandanas in honor of the festival’s name.