2018 Five Star Journal Summer Issue

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Summer 2018 Vol. 17 | No. 4





Page 16

Five Star Proud:

Grad Honors

Page 8

High School

Principal of

the Year

Page 20



Page 24


News Journal

Vol. 17 | No. 4 | Summer 2018

Connecting you

to your Five Star Schools

News Journal

Official Sponsor of

the Five Star Journal

Communications Services

1500 E. 128th Ave.

Thornton, CO 80241

(720) 972-4156


Board of Education

Kathy Plomer

Laura Mitchell

Norm Jennings

Brian Batz

Jamey Lockley

Adams 12 Five Star Schools is a caring, inclusive and

engaging district which exists so the students it serves

can attain the knowledge and skills necessary to

pursue the future of their choosing and are equipped

to navigate and thrive in our rapidly changing world.


4 Superintendent Message

6 District Calendar

8 Five Star Proud:

Grad Honors

10 Elementary School Feature:

Teachers Become Students

14 High School Feature:

Up Close at Hamilton

16 ELEVATE Update

18 Five Star Snapshots

20 District Feature:

Prestigious Award

22 Points of Pride

24 2016 Bond Update

26 In the News

Five Star Journal, Summer 2018 | 3


Safety Task Force

Team of parents, staff, students and law enforcement

to make recommendation on safety investments

For students to grow academically and thrive,

they must first feel safe and be safe.

Communities across the United States –

including Adams 12 Five Star Schools – are

considering ways to further enhance school

safety in the wake of the Feb. 14 shooting at

Marjory Stoneman High School in Parkland,

Florida in which 17 students were killed.

While we regularly work with students,

staff, parents and law enforcement on safety

matters, I felt it was important to convene a

task force in which all of these partners could

come together at the same time to discuss

ways the district and our schools might

improve safety and security.

The Safety Task Force, made up of about

30 members, first met on April 25 and will

continue its work through June. The group

is charged with recommending to me both

short- and long-term investments in safety

and security.

Members aren’t starting from scratch. The

topic of safety and security has been a focus

area that’s been explored through ELEVATE,

our engagement process for developing the

district’s new five-year strategic plan.

The task force is further refining the work

that has come out of the ELEVATE process as it

relates to safe schools. This includes focusing

on three areas that support a safe and secure

learning environment for our students: capital

investments, staffing needs and partnerships,

and programs and curriculum.

Capital Investments

Physical safety improvements to our buildings

fall under this category. Currently, all

of our elementary, middle and K-8 schools

have Aiphones, which allow front office staff

to make contact with visitors before they

are allowed to enter the building. Further

investments beyond those outlined in the

2016 Bond may include upgraded and

4 | Superintendent Message

By Chris Gdowski, Superintendent

Follow on twitter


additional cameras, limited and secured entry

points at all schools, and shatter-proof glass.

Staffing Needs and Partnerships

Currently all of our middle and high schools

in the district have a dedicated School Resource

Officer (SRO) who is a police officer

from the city in which the school is located.

The task force will consider whether we need

additional SROs, armed officers and/or more

staff within schools to provide supervision.

Additionally, the group will look at staffing

needs to support the social-emotional wellbeing

of our students. This may include

additional counselors, psychologists and

social workers. These individuals are also

often part of the school’s or district’s crisis

response team.

Programs and Curriculum

The task force will look at opportunities to

enhance current social-emotional programming

and curriculum, as well as boost support

for identifying and helping at-risk students.

The group will also explore the need for

resources to help families discuss safety

matters and the social-emotional wellbeing

of students. Other areas include

building upon our schools’ current work in

conflict resolution, bullying, and drug and

alcohol abuse education.

The common component across all three of

these focus areas is “training”. For any recommendation

the task force makes, it will also

identify the necessary training component.

We are thankful in the Five Star District for

the strong partnership we have between

students, staff, parents and law enforcement

in promoting a safe and secure learning

environment in our schools. This partnership

has strengthened our efforts in crisis prevention,

response and recovery. These efforts

include the emergency plans each of our

schools have, the safety procedures our

students and staff practice throughout the

year, and the communications protocol we

follow with our families in the event of a

safety situation.

The work of our Safety Task Force will allow

us to enhance our safety and security posture

in the Five Star District. I thank the members

of the task force for their commitment to

the safety and well-being of our students,

and I look forward to reviewing the team’s

recommendations this summer. •

Five Star Journal, Summer 2018 | 5

November 19, 2018

Approved January 31, 2018


2018-2019 School Year

Adams 12 Five Star Schools

1500 East 128 th Avenue

Thornton, CO 80241


JULY 2018 F First Day of School for Students


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1 2 3 4 5

FS-August 15, 2018 6 th morning; 7 th -8 th afternoon; 9 th ONLY

FE-August 15, 2018 ALL Elementary K-5 and K-8 Report

8 9 10 11 12 13 14 6 B 8 9 10 11 12

Printable versions of the 2018-2019

Year at a Glance are available in both

English and Spanish.


15 16 17 18 19 20 21 13 14 15 16 17 A 19

22 23 24 25 26 27 28 20 21 22 23 24 25 26

29 30 31 27 28 29 30 31 18

FS-August 16, 2018 ALL Students K-12 Report

L Last Day of School for All Students

May 23, 2019

A Elementary Assessment Days

September 4, 2018; January 18, 2019

May 3, 2019



1 2 3 4 1 2

5 6 7 8 I D 11 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

12 I D FS/FE FS 17 18 10 11 12 W B I 16

W Elementary School Work Days (No School for K-5 Students)

October 11, 2018

February 13, 2019; May 10, 2019* (potential snow day make up)

D Teacher Duty Days (No School for All Students)

August 10, and 14, 2018

December 21, 2018

May 24, 2019

19 20 21 22 23 24 25 17 18 19 20 21 22 23

26 27 28 29 30 31 17 24 25 26 27 28 19



C Teacher Comp Day – All Schools (No School for All Students)

1 1 2

I District In-service Days – All Schools (No School for All Students)

2 3 A 5 6 7 8 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

August 9, and 13, 2018; February 15, 2019

9 10 11 12 13 14 15 10 11 12 13 14 Q 16

*Dates may not apply to district

charter schools; please check each

school’s calendar for school-specific


16 17 18 19 20 21 22 17 18 19 20 21 22 23

23 24 25 26 27 28 29 24 25 26 27 28 29 30

30 19 31 16

B In-Common Release Days – K-8 (No School for K-8 Students)

October 12, 2018

January 7, February 14, and April 1, 2019

Q Quarters Days

Oct. 12, 2018 42 days

Dec. 20, 2018 43 days

Mar. 15, 2019 47 days

May 23, 2019 43 days



1 2 3 4 5 6 B 2 3 4 5 6

7 8 9 10 W B/Q 13 7 8 9 10 11 12 13

14 15 16 17 18 19 20 14 15 16 17 18 19 20

Pupil Count Window ............................ September 24 – October 8, 2018

Calendar Information

Registration of New Students .............. Please Contact Your Local School

School Year Starts, K-9 ................................................... August 15 , 2018

School Year Starts, All Students Report ......................... August 16 , 2018

21 22 23 24 25 26 27 21 22 23 24 25 26 27

28 29 30 31 23 28 29 30 22


NOVEMBER 2018 MAY 2019

Labor Day .................................................................. September 3, 2018

Elem. Assessment Days .................... Sept. 4, 2018; Jan. 18, May 3, 2019

1 2 3 1 2 A 4

Dist. In-Svc. No School-All Students ........ Aug. 9, 13, 2018; Feb. 15, 2019

Elementary Work Days ..... Oct. 11, 2018; Feb. 13, 2019; May 10* , 2019

In-Comm. Rel. Days, K-8 ....... Oct. 12, 2018; Jan. 7, Feb. 14, Apr. 1, 2019

4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5 6 7 8 9 W* 11

11 12 13 14 15 16 17 12 13 14 15 16 17 18

Veterans’ Day Observed .......................................... November 12 , 2018

Teacher Comp Day-No School ................................. November 19 , 2018

18 C 20 21 22 23 24 19 20 21 22 Q/L D 25

25 26 27 28 29 30 17 26 27 28 29 30 31 18

Thanksgiving Break .............................................. November 20-23, 2018

End of First Semester ............................................... December 20, 2018

Teacher Duty Day-No School-All Students ................ December 21, 2018

Winter Break ................................. December 24, 2018- January 4, 2019



High School In-Common Release Day ..............................January 7, 2019

All Students Return from Winter Break ...........................January 8, 2019

1 1

2 3 4 5 6 7 8 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Martin Luther King Day..................................................January 21, 2019

Presidents’ Day ............................................................February 18, 2019

Spring Break .............................................................. March 25-29, 2019

9 10 11 12 13 14 15 9 10 11 12 13 14 15

Last Day for Students......................................................... May 23 , 2019

16 17 18 19 Q D 22 16 17 18 19 20 21 22

23 24 25 26 27 28 29 23 24 25 26 27 28 29

30 31 15 30

Teacher Duty Day ............................................................... May 24, 2019

Memorial Day ..................................................................... May 27, 2019

BASE CLOSED ...................................................... August 6-10, 2018

SUMMER BASE OPEN ................................ May 31 – August 3, 2018

BASE OPEN ..................................... August 13, 2018 A.M. and P.M.

*Subject to Revision

Derby Day

Fishing Derby, Bike Rodeo & Healthy Activities

Sat. June 2 • 8 am-1 pm • northglenn.org/derbyday

E.B. Rains Jr. Memorial Park • I-25 & 120 th Avenue




MAY 14

Northglenn High School

2 p.m. at CU Events Center

Horizon High School

7 p.m. at CU Events Center

MAY 15

Thornton High School

3 p.m. at CU Events Center






MAY 16

Mountain Range High School

2 p.m. at CU Events Center

Legacy High School

7 p.m. at CU Events Center

MAY 19

Prospect Ridge Academy

9:30 a.m. at Prospect Ridge Academy

MAY 22

Vantage Point High School

11 a.m. at Macky Auditorium at CU


6 p.m. at Macky Auditorium at CU

MAY 29

Westgate Community School

6 p.m. at Mountain Range Auditorium


Grad Honors

Graduates from each comprehensive high school earn honors

As we near the end of another school year, we are reminded that getting to graduation is a true

testament of not only the student’s hard work, but that of the families, teachers and community

members who helped them gain the knowledge and skills necessary to pursue a future of their


This educational teamwork, yet again, proved a success with graduates from each of the district’s

high schools earning prestigious scholarships and military appointments. Below represents

only a few honors from the Class of 2018 – congratulations to each and every graduate for their

accomplishments during their time at Five Star Schools.

Three Five Star students named 2018 Daniels Scholars

The Daniels Scholarship Program offers resources, encouragement and inspiration far beyond

the financial assistance needed to earn a college degree. The goal is not only to help Daniels

Scholars succeed, but to ensure that they thrive beyond their years in college. Daniels Scholars

are selected from the four-state region of Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming for

demonstrating exceptional character, leadership and a commitment to serving their community.

For more information on the Daniels Scholarship, visit DanielsFund.org.

Congratulations to the 2018 Daniels Scholars:

• Tiffany Ann Marie Deeds, Northglenn High School

• Racheal Michelle Lampo, Pathways Future Center

• Camron Bailey Cardis, Thornton High School

Two students selected as 2018 Boettcher Scholarship recipients

The Boettcher Foundation recognizes Colorado’s top students by providing them with the funds

to attain an excellent in-state education and access to additional opportunities to enrich their time

in college and beyond. The selection process is competitive and rigorous. Two Five Star students

earned the scholarship. Only 42 students were named recipients out of nearly 1,500 applications.

For more information on the Boettcher Scholarship, visit BoettcherFoundation.org.

8 | Five Star Proud

Congratulations to the 2018 Boettcher Scholarship recipients:

• Sophia Rae Winker, Legacy High School (Junior graduating in three years)

• Jessica Hiatt, Mountain Range High School

*In addition to the two recipients, the Five Star District is also home to two alternates — one from

Thornton High School and one from Legacy High School.

The Power of One Charity awards scholarships to 10 Five Star students

This year, the Power of One Charity awarded $20,000 to students. Each student will receive $1,000

for their first year of college and an additional $1,000 for their second year of college. The Power

of One Charity was created in memory of Andrew James Dollaghan, son of Judi Madsen and Brian

Stanley, to provide college scholarships to high school seniors who have lost a parent or sibling, or

have substantial financial need. For more information, visit thepowerofonecharity.org.

Congratulations to the 2018 recipients:


Dominique Farrand

Evan Underwood

John Venegas

Andrew Higgins


Victoria Quintana

Alan Knutson,

Allison Maisells

Mountain Range

Lacy DiTirro-Feiten


Anna Misko

Steele Brizzolara-Dove

Three students from Legacy earn military appointments

United States Military Academy West Point

• Tyler Harmon

• Dylan Nunn

United States Air Force Academy

• Samantha Kigin

Five Star Journal, Summer 2018 | 9

On Mondays and Fridays after school Coronado Hills teachers take Spanish class, taught

by Mr. Tony, to help them communicate with their Spanish speaking families.

Teachers become students

Coronado Hills adds language lessons for teachers

Photo credit: Coronado Hills

For the past few months, teachers at Coronado Hills Elementary School have been sitting

down to take classes, too – in Spanish.

Coronado Hills has offered English-language classes to its parents for years, and that sparked

an idea from fifth-grade teacher Allison Andrews: Provide classes for teachers so they can

work to meet parents where they are linguistically. She connected with the school’s family

liaison Tony Velasquez, who got the classes started in the spring.

“It fit in perfectly with our goal to broaden and deepen our community here at the school,”

Velasquez said. “With better communication – a natural result of learning a new language –

our teachers will be able to build better relationships with parents, and the school will be a

more welcoming place for all.”

So far, 30 of the school’s teachers have taken the class, and some are already working to use

what they’ve learned with families.

“When our staff puts themselves out there, parents are very receptive and grateful that

people within the school are willing to meet them in their linguistic space,” Velasquez said.

10 | Elementary School Feature

In addition to creating stronger relationships,

it will also save the district money long-term,

Velasquez said. “Measured in dollars, down

the line, teachers will be able to communicate

with families in interactions where important

information is discussed, such as parentteacher

conferences, eliminating the need for

the school to pay interpreters,” he said.

Andrews hasn’t taken a formal foreign

language class since high school. Though

she’s tried self-guided language learning, it

hasn’t always stuck.

“This class is great,” she said. “It is

informational, interactive and Tony adjusts

to the group’s needs. He definitely approaches

it from a linguistics lens so there’s a great

understanding of the why behind certain

forms and functions of the language,” she said.

While she’s not ready to start testing her

Spanish with parents, Andrews says she’s

practicing with her bilingual students.

Velasquez is planning to continue classes

over the summer – part online, part inperson.

He also hopes to add a second-level

course for those who started learning this

semester, and to add a conversation group

that connects teachers learning Spanish

with parents learning English so that they

can work on their speaking together.

In learning another language, people walk

away with more than understanding the

right words and phrases to get a message

across – it’s about pushing their perspective

beyond what they know through language,

Velasquez said.

“When you learn a new language, you

don’t just say things differently, you see

things differently,” he said. “That may be the

biggest gift that language learning can give.”

“With better communication

– a natural result of

learning a new language –

our teachers will be able to

build better relationships

with parents, and the school

will be a more welcoming

place for all.”

- Tony Velasquez, Family Liaison

It also creates empathy, Andrews said,

because as teachers learn, try and struggle

in these classes, they understand what their

students’ parents are experiencing.

“What we forget as native speakers is that

there are so many rules of language that we

just already know,” she said. “By stepping out

of our comfort bubble and starting to learn

the rules of a new language, I think it helps

us realize the perseverance that non-native

English speakers have each day.”

Velasquez encourages any who want to

learn more about the classes to visit his

website, thelinguistsnotebook.com. •

Five Star Journal, Summer 2018 | 11




for Five Star

District students

While supplies last


& school supplies donated

by A Precious Child



Saturday, August 4, 2018

9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Five Star Stadium


• Apply for Free and

Reduced Meal Benefits

• Transportation info


• Online registration

for all students

• Check / update contact info

• Access to community


• Giveaways and more!



2018 Summer Program

All children, ages 1-18, eat for free! No Free & Reduced applications required.

Free breakfast and lunch is available this summer at the following schools:


Coronado Hills Elementary 8:30-9:30 10:45-12:30 M-Th June 4 - July 12

8300 Downing Drive, Denver, CO 80229

Hillcrest Elementary 8:00-9:00 10:30-12:15 M-Th June 4 - June 28

10335 Croke Drive, Northglenn, CO 80260

Malley Drive Elementary 8:30-9:30 10:45-12:30 M-Th June 4 - July 12

1300 Malley Drive, Northglenn, CO 80233

STEM Launch K-8 8:30-9:30 10:45-12:30 M-F June 4 - June 15

9450 N Pecos Street, Thornton, CO 80260

8:30-9:30 10:45-12:30 M-Th June 18 - July 12

The Studio School 8:30-9:30 10:45-12:30 M-F June 4 - July 13

10604 Grant Drive, Northglenn, CO 80233

Westlake Middle 8:30-9:30 10:45-12:30 M-F June 4 - July 13

2800 W 135th Avenue, Broomfield, CO 80020

All locations closed on July 4 in observance of Independence Day.

Adults can purchase breakfast for $2.50 and $3.75 for lunch.

For questions about the program, please contact Nutrition Services at (720) 972-4123.



This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Grace Padilla, Vantage Point High School, performed on stage at The Buell Theatre.

Up Close at Hamilton

Program puts students center stage for

hit Broadway musical

History and musical theater came together in March to

give more than 100 high school students in Adams 12

Five Star Schools the chance to take part in a once-in-alifetime


Sixty-two Northglenn High School students and 55

Vantage Point High School students attended a matinée

showing of “Hamilton” as the hit Broadway musical

traveled through Denver this spring.

Students dressed up for this once in a lifetime

experience; the first time for many to

attend a show.

The opportunity for the students to see the play live was the result of the Hamilton Education

Program, a partnership between the musical producers, the Gilder Lehrman Institute and the

Rockefeller Foundation. The nationwide program not only provides the opportunity for

students at selected Title I high schools to see the musical, but also integrates the story of

Alexander Hamilton and the Founding Era (1774-1797) into classroom studies.

Students at both schools went through a detailed application process to be considered for the

program. Kasey Nunn, a social studies teacher at Northglenn High School, said her American

History students were tasked with creating a hypothetical primary source document that could

be performed and recorded. Students took part in after-school workshops to create perfor-

14 | High School Feature

mance pieces (poems, scenes and songs) for

submission to the Gilder Lehrman Institute.

Northglenn High School (NGHS) was originally

not accepted for the program but

found out, six days before the performance,

that a space had become available after

another school dropped out.

“I almost jumped out of my chair,” Nunn said

when she heard the news. “We had six days to

get permission slips and money from students

who were interested in going.”

Vantage Point High School (VPHS), likewise

dealt with an initial rejection partly because

the school didn’t meet the official criteria of

a Title I high school. VPHS English teacher

Jonathan Rethinger wrote an impassioned

plea to the Gilder Lehrman Institute for the

school to be reconsidered.

“Students deserve to encounter great literature

and compelling characters in their most

authentic and immediate form,” Rethinger

said. “Many of our students have never had

a genuine, up close and personal encounter

with literature. More than any other setting,

theater provides a human being directly in

front of you who will force you to deal with

powerful subject matter.”

Vantage Point students, similar to NGHS

students, created their own performance

pieces and submitted them to the Gilder

Lehrman Institute for consideration to be

performed on stage at The Buell Theatre for

audience and cast members prior to the show.

Vantage Point student Grace Padilla earned

the opportunity with a memorized, original

3-minute piece of spoken word poetry.

“Getting Grace on the set of Hamilton at

The Buell Theatre, well, that was simply

surreal. We love Grace,” Rethinger said. “We’ve

always believed in her talent, her authenticity,

and her character. Onstage, she simply

demonstrated to the world a sliver of what

many of us at Vantage Point have been

privileged to witness for years. The credit for

that performance goes entirely to her. ”

For the students from both schools able to

take part in the program, the benefits have

extended well past seeing the incredible


“Students are now walking in the hallways

singing the soundtrack, they are referring to

the Founding Fathers with more confidence

in their essays,” Nunn said. “They aren’t

afraid to tackle topics in class, they forged

friendships with other classmates and educators

they might not have otherwise done;

and they will leave my class knowing they

experienced something that others didn’t

have the chance to do.”

“By getting the kids to an event like The

Hamilton Education Program,” Rethinger

added, “we reinforce a message that there

are joyful and interactive ways to engage

intellectually with the world around you, to

become a consumer of arts and culture, and

form strong relationships.” •

Five Star Journal, Summer 2018 | 15

ELEVATE is our engagement process for developing the district’s new five-year strategic plan

to elevate student success in the Five Star District. A five-year strategic plan reflecting the

community’s priorities will be unveiled August 2018.

Stage II

Over 3,600 people

participated in an

online survey.

March 2018

Six priority areas emerge:

• 21st Century Learners

• Diverse Learning

• Outside-the-Classroom Learning

• Safe Schools

• Social/Emotional Learning

• World-Class Staff

Final plan


August 2018

Fall 2017 April 2018

Stage I

More than 3,000 people and

49 schools participated in

engagement sessions to

discover district strengths,

who we are and want to be.

Stage III

ELEVATE Capstone event — The Summit.

Over 230 parents, staff, students and

community members prioritized action

items within the six priority areas and

determined next steps.

Summer 2018

Stage IV

Board of Education

will review draft

plan and outline

resources needed

to implement.

Photos from


At Adams 12 Five Star Schools, we

• Care

• Collaborate

• Empower

• Engage

• Focus on Students

The Summit


16 | ELEVATE Update

Five Star Journal, Summer 2018 | 17

A collection of photos from events

happening around the district.

Photo credit: Eagleview

18 | Five Star Snapshots

Photo credit: Mrs. Stovall

Photo credit: Horizon

Left page top Five Star 5K runners / Left page bottom left Eagleview Elementary 20th anniversary rocks /

Left page right Northglenn Middle Mariachi Band performs on Cinco de Mayo at lunch for peers /

Right page top left & center Century Middle Civil War reenactment /

Right page top right Horizon High Admin team with R2D2 that was made by Horizon student Geoffrey Simpson and his dad /

Right page bottom left & bottom right Legacy High Marching Band performed in Dublin, Ireland

and was named best overall band at the 2018 St. Patrick’s Day Parade

Tag us in your images on social media using #FiveStarProud.

Five Star Journal, Summer 2018 | 19

Sharee Blunt receives the 2018 High School Principal of the Year Award at a school assembly on May 9, 2018.

Prestigious Award

Sharee Blunt named 2018 Colorado

High School Principal of the Year

Adams 12 Five Star Schools is proud to announce

that Northglenn High School Principal Sharee

Blunt earned the 2018 High School Principal of

the Year award for the state of Colorado. The

district celebrates Blunt and her dedicated

staff for receiving this prestigious honor from

the Colorado Association of School Executives

District leadership celebrates Principal Blunt’s

prestigious award.

(CASE), in conjunction with the Colorado Association of Secondary School Principals.

Blunt regularly demonstrates her love and passion for serving Northglenn students, both

in and out of the classroom. She rarely misses an opportunity to cheer on athletes, attend

performances or even celebrate one of her student’s birthdays. Through this passion and

support for all Northglenn students, Blunt has created an environment centered on the

academic, social and emotional success of students at Northglenn.

“What Sharee has accomplished at Northglenn is remarkable,” said CASE Executive Director,

Lisa Escárcega. “Her ability to effectively engage and connect with students is a model

for creating positive school climate in which every child feels like a valued member of the

Northglenn High School community.”

When Blunt first arrived at Northglenn, she decided the best way to turn things around was

20 | District Feature

to face the student achievement data head

on. She encouraged her staff to take time to

reflect on what they did in the past, take note

of what worked and what didn’t, identify

root causes, and then work collaboratively

to create a plan for moving forward. Under

Blunt’s leadership, Northglenn has achieved

significant academic success, reaching a

graduation rate of 89.8 percent for the Class

of 2017, up more than 20 percentage points

from 2010.

The excitement in the classroom from both

teachers and students is further evidence

of Blunt’s influence as a school leader. Her

ability to build relationships combined with

her willingness to empower teachers has

created an incredibly supportive, enthusiastic

and contagious energy among staff.

Principal Blunt is not one to seek out the

spotlight. In fact, she made it clear that the

award was not for her, but for the entire

staff. When Lee Peters, Executive Director

of Secondary Schools, announced that

Blunt was named the 2018 Colorado High

School Principal of the Year, staff erupted in

applause and gave her a standing ovation.

“Getting really good people to pursue

recognition for their work is hard,” Peters

noted when speaking to staff. “Sharee is very

humble in her work, and I know for her, this is

very much a Northglenn High School award

not a Sharee Blunt award, and because of

that I am honored to be able to recognize


The Colorado Association of Secondary

School Principals, an affiliate of the National

Association of Secondary School Principals

(NASSP) and a department of the Colorado

Association of School Executives (CASE),

selected Blunt based on a rigorous process.

“What Sharee has accomplished

at Northglenn is remarkable. Her

ability to effectively engage and

connect with students is a model

for creating positive school climate

in which every child feels like a

valued member of the Northglenn

High School community.”

- Lisa Escárcega

CASE Executive Director

The NASSP sponsors the National

Principal of the Year program. The award

recognizes outstanding middle and high

school principals who provide high-quality

learning opportunities for students as well

as demonstrate exemplary contributions

to the profession. Selection criteria include

personal excellence, collaborative leadership,

curriculum, instruction, assessment and

personalization of learning opportunities for


As Colorado High School Principal of

the Year, Blunt will compete for National

Principal of the Year recognition, which

will be announced later this year. She will

represent Colorado and be honored along

with other state winners in Washington, D.C.

in early fall. •

Five Star Journal, Summer 2018 | 21



Arapahoe Ridge

Recipient of the Playworks Golden Ball for its

excellent implementation of structures and

routines outlined by the Playworks Recess


Coronado Hills

Celebrated students’ reading growth in their

OSCAR themed literacy night. Over 400

members of the community joined in the


Cotton Creek

Celebrated the 20th year of performing

the National Anthem at Coors Field – a

recurring invitation from the Colorado

Rockies organization due to the high-quality

performance and student participation.

Coyote Ridge

Raised over $29,000 at the Coyote Ridge

Boosterthon Fun Run this spring, and was able

to make a large technology purchase resulting

in Chromebooks in every classroom 2nd

through 5th grade.


Home to the Hispanic Advisory Council

Classified Employee of the Year, Silvia Solis.

Additionally, Becky Cuevas, was nominated

for Certified Employee of the Year.


Fourth- and fifth-grade choir performed the

play, “Pirates,” for the Sunny Acres Nursing

Home, as well as the Ashley Manor Memory

Care Center.


Principal Justina Carney was recognized by

the Hispanic Advisory Council (HAC) as

Principal of the Year, while the school’s family

liaison, Carolina Bautista, received an award for

Community Liaison of the Year.


Awarded the Governor’s Distinguished

Improvement Award and John Irwin School of

Excellence Award

Mountain View

Parent-Teacher Organization (PTO) raised over

$17,000 on the annual Miles for Mountain View

Fun Run event. This money is used to fund PTO

educational grants for classrooms.

North Star

Hosted a Making Fitness Fun Family Night

on April 26, 2018 with over 120 students and

parents attending.


Received the Governor’s Distinguished

Improvement award for The Partnership

for Assessment of Readiness for College

and Careers (PARCC) test data and reached

a ‘Performance’ rating by the Colorado

Department of Education for the second year

in a row.

Rocky Mountain

Hispanic Advisory Council (HAC) awarded Steve

Frank the Certified Employee of the Year award

and Lourdes Walker the Classified Employee of

the Year award.

Silver Creek

Earned the Governor’s Distinguished

Improvement Award for the second year

in a row!


Received the Governor’s Distinguished

Improvement Award.


Celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.

22 | Points of Pride


Recognized as a 2018 Healthy School

Champion and was awarded the Excellence

Award for the school’s health efforts.


Reading Counts Program was a huge success

where students passed over 11,000 online

reading quizzes, totaling almost 42 million

words read.


Continues to offer 22 after school clubs at no

cost for students.


Hulstrom K-8

Selected as the featured school for the

month of April from Green Up Our Schools.

Read full article >


Collected and donated 2,018 socks to A Precious

Child during Dr. Seuss Read Across America


STEM Launch

Winner of the 2018 ReNew our Schools Energy

Challenge, that has awarded the school $8,000.



Students were partnered with Broomfield

Crescent Grange to write a local landmark

nomination for the historic building which

is over 100 years old.

Rocky Top

7th Annual Grizzlies Give Back. Goal to raise

$25,000 to provide support to families, with half

the proceeds going to Rocky Top student Kailee

Gibson. Check out the slideshow >

Silver Hills

Two students were chosen for the City of

Westminster’s Mayor’s Award: Oliver Elliott

and Nik Jenks.


Bollman Technical Education Center

Megan Madden, welding student and Emily

Patino-Fariasa, medical science II - EMT

students each earned a $1,000 scholarship from

the National Technical Honor Society.


Doug Dietel awarded Outstanding

Educator from CU Boulder.

Mountain Range

Amber Gustason, senior, won Wendy’s High

School Heisman award. She is currently ranked

#1 in the state for 5A discus and throws 12 feet

further than the #2 mark in the state.


An estimated 300 students will graduate

this year.


Prospect Ridge Academy

The first class of seniors will graduate in May.

Read the full list of school points of pride.

List is compiled by schools that submit Points of Pride before publication date.

Five Star Journal, Summer 2018 | 23

Thunder Vista P-8 is wrapping up construction this summer and is set to open to students this fall.

Bond Commitments

District-wide bond work to take place in Summer 2018

As students and teachers head out for summer break later this month, construction crews will

move in at nearly a dozen district schools and facilities receiving significant renovation work

as part of the 2016 Bond Program.

Summer 2018 will mark the first summer of district-wide bond work as part of $350 million

in planned bond improvements approved by district voters in 2016. Many of the projects

scheduled to take place this summer have been planned for much of the past year and, in

most cases, address critical building repair needs identified as part of the original bond plan.

With an average age of 30 years, the district identified a variety of deferred maintenance

issues as the bond plan was developed. District facilities and planning teams use a composite

Facility Condition Index score to determine when building components, such as furnaces,

roofs, sewers, etc. are past their service life and in need of repair. Bond money can only be

used for building-related expenses such as new construction and repair, and not operational

expenses such as employee salaries and instructional materials.

“The bond plan prioritized improvements to building systems and infrastructure, especially

at some of our oldest district schools and facilities,” said Adams 12 Five Star Schools Chief

Operations Officer Pat Hamilton. “We’re excited about the improvements that our community

will see this summer because the planned work balances the need for critical, but sometimes

unnoticed, building system repairs, with giving schools and facilities a fresh, updated look

with upgrades such as new carpet, paint and tile.”

24 | 2016 Bond Update

New Construction

Construction is expected to wrap up this

summer on the new Thunder Vista P-8 in

the Anthem community of Broomfield. The

three floor, 142,000-square-foot school was

built to serve the growing northwest portion

of the district and alleviate enrollment

pressure on surrounding elementary and

middle schools. The school will open to

students in August.

Phase 1 of construction on STEM Lab, a

magnet school in Northglenn for STEMfocused

learning, is expected to wrap up in

May 2018. The building is in the midst of a

two-year renovation and reconstruction that

will give the nearly 50-year-old building a

21st-century look that matches the school’s

unique curriculum. Phase 2 of the project will

begin in June 2018 with the entire project

expected to be complete for the start of the

2019-2020 school year.

Arapahoe Ridge and Cotton Creek elementary

schools in Westminster are receiving

expansion projects in 2018. The projects,

which began in December 2017, will add 12

classrooms to Arapahoe Ridge and eight

classrooms to Cotton Creek. This will allow

both schools to remove mobile classrooms

and Arapahoe Ridge to launch a pilot tuitionbased

preschool program. Both existing

buildings will also see renovation work over

the summer.

Summer 2018 Renovations

A number of schools and facilities will have

building renovation projects start and, in

some cases, be completed in Summer 2018.

Federal Heights, Mountain View, North

Mor, North Star, Stukey, Riverdale, Westview

and Woodglen elementary schools will

receive improvements to the interior and

exterior of their buildings. This will include

improvements to building systems such

as plumbing and HVAC, safety and security

improvements such as updated digital

security cameras and security improvements

to building entrances, as well as aesthetic

improvements such as new paint, tile and

carpet. This work is expected to be completed

for the start of the 2018-2019 school year.

A number of schools will see first phases

of bond work completed this summer. This

includes work at Northglenn, Thornton and

Horizon high schools, Northglenn Middle

School, Cherry Drive and Centennial

elementary schools.

New classroom and building technology

components will also be added to schools

and facilities during the summer. A new

district-wide phone system – identified as

part of the bond program – is expected to be

installed at all schools and facilities.

Many school leaders have also chosen to use

school-specific Instructional Upgrades bond

money to bolster classroom technology. More

than 300 technology classroom packages

featuring the latest in projectors, magnetic,

reflective whiteboards and classroom audio

systems will be installed at schools for the

start of the 2018-2019 school year. •

To learn more about the 2016 Bond

Program and specific improvements

planned for your child’s school, visit


Five Star Journal, Summer 2018 | 25


Three school leaders earn prestigious awards

Adams 12 Five Star Schools is home to some of the most well-respected and influential school

leaders in Colorado. This year, two Principals in the Five Star District received nationallyrecognized

awards sponsored by the Colorado Association of School Executives (CASE).

• Kristen Golden, Principal of Riverdale Elementary, received the Distinguished

Elementary Principal of the Year award. Read More >

• Sharee Blunt, Principal of Northglenn High School, received the Distinguished

High School Principal of the Year award. Read More >

Another school leader in the Five Star District who was honored is Sharon Collins, executive

director of Westgate Community School. She received the Charter School Leadership Award,

sponsored by the Colorado League of Charter Schools.

Five Star District celebrates Employees of the Year

For the 2017-2018 school year, Adams 12 Five Star Schools, in partnership with the District

Twelve Educators Association (DTEA) and the Classified School Employees’ Association (CSEA),

celebrates amazing employees by honoring staff from three groups: administrative

(principals and district leaders), classified (office support, custodians, etc.) and certified

(teachers and counselors).

This spring, employees from across the district nominated their colleagues. With over 130

nominations, committees for each employee group determined finalists and an overall

employee of the year.

See who was nominated, who was a finalist, and who was named overall employee of the

year for the 2017-2018 school year: www.adams12.org/employeesofyear.

Legislative Update: Legislature restores some funding for

K-12 education

Colorado school districts are on track for their most significant funding increase in years as

the Legislature finished work on education finance bills for 2018-19.

Total program funding, the amount of state and local revenues allocated for basic school

operating costs, is projected to be $7.08 billion in 2018-19, a $460.9 million increase over the

$6.62 billion figure for the current, 2017-18 budget. Read More >

26 | In the News

Online check-in available

districtwide for the 2018-2019

school year

For summer 2018, Adams 12 Five Star Schools will expand the online check-in process to

include all K-12 students. Families with returning students enrolled in any K-12 district

school (non-charter) for the 2018-2019 school year can use the online check-in process. The

online process can be accessed through the Infinite Campus Parent Portal and will be open

from June 11 through August 12. Online check-in replaces the standard check-in process

at schools, allowing parents to verify and update primary household and demographic

information for returning students. In order to receive class schedules before school starts,

all parents/guardians of returning students must complete the online process. For more

information, visit www.adams12.org/onlinecheckin.

Record number of parents participate in districtwide

parent survey

In spring 2018, a record number of Five Star District parents responded to the 2017-2018

Parent Engagement and Satisfaction Survey. Nearly 6,200 parents across the district

participated in the online survey, representing more than 10 ethnicities.

As a diverse district, the Board of Education and Five Star staff strive to develop and support

school communities in effective school and family partnerships that create welcoming and

inclusive environments. Feedback provided to the district and schools is invaluable as staff

strives to create the best learning environment for all students.

View the data results and district overview for the 2017-2018 Parent Engagement and

Satisfaction Survey.

Results for each school available May 14.


Help Adams 12 Five Star Schools spread the word about the great things happening across

the district. With nearly 39,000 students across five cities in 54 schools, we need your help

in sharing the exciting events, initiatives and success stories happening at your child’s

school. Submit your good news story: www.adams12.org/share-your-news.

Five Star Journal, Summer 2018 | 27

During emergency or weather-related events, we want you to receive the

most accurate information. Ensure your contact information is currently

up-to-date in Infinite Campus.

Be the f irst to know.

Receive priority alerts

on your cell phone.

Text “YES” to 68453 *

With this free service * * , you will receive

text messages notifying you of safety alerts

or other important information impacting

the Adams 12 Five Star Schools system.

You can opt-out from alerts at any time.

Reply with HELP if you need assistance.

Your privacy is important. Your information will not be sold or provided to third parties. *Your cell phone number must be up-to-date in your

Infinite Campus profile. **Message and/or data rates may apply.

1500 E. 128th Ave., Thornton, CO 80241 | (720) 972-4000


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