“The skill set I hope to bring to the board is one of cooperation and care,” said David (Dave) E. Cruson in his application to the District 49 Board of Education. “I very much prefer a collaboration style when it comes to a team decision. I make every effort to weigh pros and cons, while also thinking about the past and the future. I try to actively listen to one’s perspective, especially when it differs from my own. Once the decision is made, particularly in a group setting, I make every effort to suppress my own opinion for the sake of the group’s decision.”
Hundreds of students, parents, teachers and community members supported literacy efforts at Stetson Elementary School May 19. The end of year event focused on celebrating student achievement and providing parents with resources for continued literacy efforts during summer break.
The Vista Ridge High School Boys' Track and Field Team earns the school’s second state track and field championship May 21 at Jefferson County Stadium in Lakewood. The state finals meet was postponed and shortened to two days for the first time in history. The Wolves, led by strong efforts from their sprinters, ran away with the state title, scoring 93.5 points. Air Academy High School in District 20 was second with 58 points.
“If your dreams don’t scare you, then what’s the point?” said ShaeLynn Rickert, student commencement speaker, speaking from the podium, facing her classmates and hundreds of family and friends. “Go and get that dream.”
Members of the Sand Creek High School Class of 2017 visited elementary and middle schools in caps and gowns May 17 to thank former teachers and inspire younger students. Some of the young studentes gave high fives while others shook hands or waved signs. "Congratulations," said one young student. "Good luck in college," yelled another.
Sharing your passion with an engaged audience is part of the culture at Sand Creek High School. Sophomores in the Primary Years Programme and honors classes participate in the annual design expo with seniors from the Project Lead the Way program.
“I simply need to say thank you to not only Ms. Bonavita but to the teachers at both Springs Studio and at PPEC,” said Alexandra Stoller, 17, twelfth-grader at Pikes Peak Early College . “Even as I’ve become more college than high school, I still have teachers asking, ‘How are you doing?’ or, ‘Is there anything I can help with?’ and there is nothing better than that.”
“Meleah is the first student in District 49 to complete her Associates of Arts and Business while completing her high school degree at the same time,” said Elisabeth Fisk, Vista Ridge High School concurrent enrollment dean during her introduction. Meleah earned college credit in high school through concurrent enrollment, a program for students to earn free college credits on high school and college campuses while completing high school graduation requirements.
“I have completely changed 180 from who I was as a freshman,” said Jake Marvin, 18, twelfth-grader at Springs Studio for Academic Excellence during "Fantastic 49" recognition May 11. “Being in all the different programs and classes and opportunities presented to me has allowed me to grow and become someone I never thought I could be.”
Retiring adaptive physical education teacher Bonnie Mendenhall shows Sand Creek High School tenth grader Brendan Ellis,15, how to cast, May 11 at the 10th annual District 49 Fishing Day event for special needs students at Prospect Lake in Colorado Springs.
While introducing Grace to the podium, Corral told a story, when preparing a recommendation letter for Grace to one of the country’s service academies, she was struck by what accomplishment meant the most to the senior. “As we were going through that process, Grace was listing off all of her accomplishments, both academic and with community service and also with sports,” said Corral. “What was very notable to me was that her greatest sense of accomplishment was peer tutoring. Listening to that it just made me smile. Here’s this young lady will all this academic and athletic feats and for her the biggest moment for her was giving back to others.”
As he approached the podium to address the BOE directors, Joey Templeton, 17, Patriot High School eleventh-grader, was overcome with emotion. “I really haven’t had a proud life for myself,” said Joey, “and this is a moment where I should be really happy. This program itself has directly changed my life a lot and it’s a great thing for not only this school but for my district. It will help the progression of students at-risk and I appreciate all of you giving us a chance to excel in this.”
“All of our grade levels and teams have selected activities that are placed throughout the building,” says Theresa Ritz, principal. “Many of the activities combine art and math or inquiry and science.” Ritz says inviting the community to the school for evening events promotes a healthy and collaborative culture that pays dividends for student learning. “Seeing them with their families makes a big difference,” says Ritz. “When our families come in we connect in a personal way, especially for a fun event. To see families interacting with our teachers in a fun way is motivating. It’s a big deal.”
The work of a teacher is full of passion and commitment. It requires initiative from process improvement to individualized attention. We celebrate our educators for the important role they have. We salute them for the valuable service they provide to students and the community.
“This is our world art festival and we want to broaden horizons and open the world up to our community,” says Angela Reid, RES fine arts instructor. “We want to foster appreciation.”
Student-athletes from districts across Colorado Springs competed in the Southeast Region Unified Special Olympics Track Meet held May 3 at Sand Creek High School.
Preschooler Quentin Shoats, 3, hops on floor markers May 3 during a Special Olympics event at Meridian Ranch Elementary School in District 49.
Falcon Middle School students prepare for a special "Star Wars" themed live broadcast of Firebird Nation News May 4. “It's better than someone reading the announcements,” said Brian Smith, FMS principal. “It's a memorable experience to begin our day in Firebird Nation."
Eighth grade students at Horizon Middle School hosted second-graders from each of the three Sand Creek Zone elementary schools May 3 for a science show. In addition to helping the second-graders learn, the science show is an opportunity for the HMS students to learn and practice leadership skills.
Woodmen Hills Elementary preschooler Andrew Holland, 5, admires rockets on display at District 49’s first Military Family Appreciation Day April 22 at the Creekside Success Center.