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Education

  • 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.

  • Family’s lawsuit: South Jeffco charter school board violated sunshine law

    By Jeffrey A. Roberts, For the Courier 

    A Jefferson County charter school violated Colorado’s Sunshine Law and retaliated against a family when the parents asked questions about their daughters’ education, a lawsuit claims.

  • Board mulls grade shuffling, elementary school mergers

    A facilities master plan unveiled at last Thursday’s meeting of the Jeffco school board would require a bond issue to address capital needs among the district’s aging schools.

    In a presentation of the plan, Superintendent Dan McMinimee and facilities staff recommended reconfiguring grades at a number of elementary and middle schools, adjusting matriculation boundaries, and making significant renovations at schools across the district — all in a bid to address aging facilities within current budget limitations.

  • Board mulls budget, boost in employee pay

    Employee compensation and budgetary concerns largely dominated the Jeffco school board meeting last Thursday.

    In a meeting that stretched almost to midnight, the board spent much of the time discussing how to address its top priority: increasing educator compensation in order to attract and retain talent within the school district.

  • Jeffco school board reviewing Stevenson’s separation agreement

    Jeffco school board members plan to renegotiate the separation agreement of former superintendent Cindy Stevenson to allow her to volunteer at district schools.

  • Ending performance pay would cost $3.5 million

    Ending the controversial policy that links teacher pay to performance evaluations — a hallmark of the conservative school board majority that was recalled last November — would initially cost $3.5 million, the Jeffco school district’s human resources chief said last Thursday.

  • Sunny outlook prevails for students at online school

    Using puppets that resemble a chicken and a dog, 14-year-old Amber Miller gives weather forecasts through a creative program of Colorado Connections Academy, her online school.

    “Lovely weather we’re having!” said Woofy the dog puppet in a recent broadcast.
    “Indeed, it’s b-b-b-b-beautiful weather for chickens,” added Professor Poultry, the chicken puppet through which Amber speaks.

  • Dakota Ridge students develop enterprise to increase awareness of suicide risk

    Two seniors at Dakota Ridge High School have launched an enterprise designed to increase awareness of classmates who may be at risk of suicide.

    Working with teacher Rachel Caliga in their entrepreneurship class, Andrew Arney and Bobby Lloyd McConnell have developed a business plan called “Operation Upstream,” which includes products designed to prevent suicides.

    “We thought Operation Upstream would be a perfect business,” Arney said.

  • 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.