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Education

  • Montessori School of Evergreen students gain appreciation for their surroundings after trip to Nepal

    It’s not often that a school trip takes students to Nepal.

    Six Montessori School of Evergreen seventh-graders spent two weeks at a school in Khandbari, Nepal, and they were enthusiastic about the people they met and sights they saw — and they even embraced the lack of technology while they were away. They agree it was a trip of a lifetime.

    “We got to see something amazing,” said seventh-grader Cole McFarland. “We got to explore and not just study from books.”

  • WJMS musicians collaborate to help a composer create an instrumental piece about kindness

    West Jefferson Middle School instrumental music students are getting an experience of a lifetime this year by helping to steer the creation of an original work with a Chicago composer.
    The band and orchestra will perform the instrumental piece in March during an event paying tribute to kindness.
    The piece, called “The Ripple Effect,” is about fostering kindness, a topic the students chose.

  • EMS students create PSAs to teach others about making the lake a better place

    Students in sixth-grade science classes at Evergreen Middle School have been learning about Evergreen Lake and some of the issues that can harm its waters.

    Teachers Megan Crownholm and Caroline Gaker challenged their students to work with the Evergreen Metropolitan District to turn their findings in public service announcements to teach others about helping keep the lake clean.

    Students made posters, fliers, podcasts, videos and PowerPoint presentations to explain what the problems are and how they can be solved.

  • Elk Creek Elementary students share their books with classmates

    The Writer Share Fair at Elk Creek Elementary School is a simple way to teach a variety of things: leadership, inspiration, literacy, storytelling and more.

    The fair takes place twice a year at the school, and fifth-graders take the lead in small groups — each with a student from each grade. The groups are stationed around the school, and each student shares a book he or she has written.

    The leaders ask questions and talk about what they like in the books. When the students are done reading, they get star stickers for doing such a good job.

  • WJMS students tackle issues as part of Social Change Day

    Eighth-graders at West Jefferson Middle School learned firsthand that they can express their ideas about social issues.

    Students participated in Social Change Day after they chose topics, researched them and then came to conclusions on how to make the world a better place. Their topics ranged from teen suicide to ocean pollution to child abuse to homelessness.

  • Students, staff at Evergreen Middle celebrate principal’s birthday with a flash mob

    It’s rare that Evergreen Middle School principal Tim Vialpando cries to start the school day.

    But that was his reaction when more than 700 of his students joined in a flash mob Friday morning to wish him a happy 39th birthday.

    “I’m overwhelmed by these kids — as I always am,” Vialpando said as students filed out of the gymnasium after their dance. “All I needed was that. I feel very lucky to be here.”

  • WJMS principal Schoenhals making himself at home

    David Schoenhals’ heart is in Conifer.

    The principal at West Jefferson Middle School, who started in the position in July, moved to the area to embrace both his new position and his new community. He has fallen in love with his school and the area.

    After 29 years working in Aurora Public Schools as a math teacher, math instructional coach, math instructional coordinator and principal of a K-8 school, he decided it was time to move into the foothills.

  • Elk Creek principal Pollitt puts focus on teachers, students

    Elk Creek Elementary School’s principal doesn’t have a desk in her office. Instead, there’s a conference table, and she prefers not to sit at the head of it.

    Valerie Pollitt, who began the position in August, believes her job as principal is to let her staff and students take the lead and shine.

    “As much as I can,” she said, “I put teachers front and center. That’s who I am. There are so many amazing things at Elk Creek.”

  • With the help of new votes, Jeffco Public Schools is successful on both ballot initiatives

    As more votes are counted, it appears there has been a shift in fate for Jeffco Public Schools. 

    While it initially appeared that one of the school district's two ballot measures failed in Tuesday's election, it is now looking as though Jeffco might pull out a victory on both. 

    Unofficial results, updated around 11 p.m. Nov. 9, indicate both ballot measure 5A and ballot measure 5B will pass. The first is $33 million mill levy override, while the second is a $567 million bond.  

  • School board approves firing Evergreen teacher after inappropriate remarks

    The Jeffco school board has approved a recommendation to dismiss Evergreen Middle School physical education teacher Michael Kuzava after he made inappropriate comments to a female student last month and allegedly made other inappropriate remarks to other students.

    In a unanimous vote Sept. 12, the board approved Superintendent Jason Glass’ recommendation to terminate Kuzava’s employment on grounds of “insubordination, immorality and other good or just cause.”