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Education

  • Pay-for-performance for teachers could be rolled back

    Early conversations between the Jeffco school district and its teachers union hint that a controversial pay-for-performance plan for teachers instituted by the ousted conservative school board majority might be partially rolled back.

  • 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.

  • Jeffco students outperform state on PARCC-developed tests

    While Jeffco students outperformed state results at nearly every level of PARCC-developed English and math tests last spring, most results still fell short of newly implemented expectations, although a Jeffco testing expert cautioned that data may be somewhat skewed. 

  • 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.

  • Students at Blue Heron Elementary flock to holiday drive benefiting homeless

    As holiday parties were in full swing at Blue Heron Elementary School last Thursday, youngsters were taking time to pack essential items for homeless students.

    The entire school participated in the effort organized by sixth-grade teacher Kim Fognani, in which more than 8,000 products were collected in recent weeks.

    Gathered around tables in the school library and gym, students placed bottles of shampoo, body wash, hairbrushes, lotions and other items in plastic containers.

  • Jeffco Virtual Academy to drop K-6 classes

     Jeffco Virtual Academy’s elementary-level program will close after the school year ends and be partially absorbed by Arvada-based Two Roads Charter School as a result of low enrollment, school district officials say.

  • Spreading Christmas cheer

    For students in Chatfield High School’s special-education classes, it’s become a holiday tradition to cheer up our nation’s soldiers.

    The students once again gathered in the Chatfield High atrium on Friday to stuff 250 stockings with toiletries, homemade cards and other items to be sent to Fort Carson in Colorado Springs. From there, the stockings will go to GIs at home and overseas who won’t be able to spend the holidays with family, said special-education teacher Sharon McManus.

  • Group that backed recall ordered to disclose donors

    An administrative judge has decided that one nonprofit group that contributed to efforts to recall three former Jeffco school board members violated state campaign finance law, and must pay a fine and disclose its donors.

  • Kindergarten paraprofessional wins statewide award

    Anne Bitsie has hundreds of children.

    While only three of them are her own, the rest are 10 years’ worth of former kindergarten students, the oldest of whom are now in high school.

    “My students will always be a part of my heart,” Bitsie said. “Oftentimes, I see them out at the store, or around town, and they’ll stop and say hello. Even if it’s been years (since they were in kindergarten), it’s so touching to see that they remember me and to hear that I made a positive impact on their lives.”

  • Mixed response to school district’s facilities plan

    Community reaction to Jeffco Public Schools’ proposed facilities master plan is mixed, based on questionnaire responses from more than 800 community members since the plan was presented at a school board meeting last month.