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Education

  • D’Evelyn High marching band hits another high note

    For the sixth year, the D’Evelyn Junior/Senior High School marching band took first place in the 2A state competition.

    But unlike years past, this win felt less certain for the 53-member band as they went into the final round of competition as the third seed.

    “I was pretty pessimistic going into it. I didn’t think we were going to win,” said Brennan Reeves, a senior percussionist.

    Junior mellophone player Selma Shepherd agreed, calling it “a tight competition.”

  • School board approves $20,000 in performance pay for McMinimee

    The Jeffco school board has approved $20,000 in performance-based bonuses for Superintendent Dan McMinimee for his achievements during the 2015-16 year.

    Announced at the school board’s regular meeting Nov. 3, the decision comes after a presentation by McMinimee at a special meeting of the board Oct. 20, during which he gave his thoughts on whether he had adequately achieved goals set a year before.

  • Music to their ears

    Choirs from 14 Jeffco high schools — including Dakota Ridge, Columbine and Chatfield — congregated at Arvada High School on Oct. 20 to perform an informal concert for one another.

    Called the Jeffco Sing-In, the musical event has more than a 20-year history. It provides a chance for the concert choirs to listen to each other in a non-competitive atmosphere. In fact, choirs are asked not to wear school colors or choir outfits. Each choir can perform up to two songs of any genre.

  • Author celebrates birthday with visit to Mortensen Elementary

    David Shannon was greeted by cheers, claps and the echo of hundreds of students at Mortensen Elementary School singing “Happy Birthday.”

    The author — perhaps best known for books like “No, David” and “David Gets in Trouble” — visited the South Jeffco elementary school last Thursday. As the visit happened to fall on his birthday, Mortensen chose to celebrate, and the aroma of a birthday sheet cake wafted through the halls.

  • Peiffer cultivates real-life lessons

    The best way to teach children about sustainability and healthy living is to fully immerse them in the practice of it — at least that’s Peiffer Elementary School’s motto.

    The South Jeffco school began work on its community garden last Friday, and teachers, students and parents gathered at the school during the district’s fall break to help.

  • Chatfield band orchestrates a notable win

    Members of the Chatfield Senior High marching band agree that “shocking” would be the best word to describe their first-place finish at the Colorado West Invitational competition.

    “These two, their mouth dropped on the front sideline,” said band director Andy Michaud, gesturing toward drum majors Sabrina de la Garza and Maggie Michaud, both of whom play the clarinet.

  • Jeffco school board endorses group’s goal to scrap PARCC exam

    The Jeffco school board agreed last Thursday to support some controversial resolutions by the Colorado Association of School Boards, including one in favor of scrapping the PARCC student-assessment exam.

    At a study session, school board members discussed 18 proposed resolutions that will affect CASB’s advocacy agenda during the 2017 legislative session. Another resolution that spurred controversy would advocate repeal of the state law that holds school districts liable in any school shooting or act of violence.

    Division over PARCC exam

  • Ex-school board member questions Jeffco's bond, tax hike at forum

    Jeffco Public Schools faced some staunch opposition last week to the bond and mill levy it hopes voters will approve on Election Day in November. 

    At an election forum held at Center/Stage Theatre in Evergreen on Sept. 27, former school board member Laura Boggs highlighted what she sees as long-term financial ramifications of the proposed $535 million bond issue and $33 million property-tax increase intended to go toward facilities upgrades, compensation and other needs in the district.

  • Preschool event celebrates cultures around the world

    “On the count of three, I want everyone to say aloha!”

    “ALOHA!” the crowd yelled in return, preparing to learn the hula dance of Hawaii with snow cones melting down their hands and sticking to their smiling faces.

  • 5K benefits Columbine’s special-needs program

    David Blair knew he wanted to organize a 5K to give back to the community, but he didn’t know what cause to support.

    After some consideration and discussion with former Columbine High School student Steven Santaniello, Blair, a 17-year-old Columbine senior, decided to give the proceeds from the race to the challenge program at his school.

    The inaugural Walk For All 5K was held at 9 a.m. Sunday. Runners and walkers of all ages began at Columbine High on the sunny October morning and completed a course through Clement Park, finishing at the school.