Dear Columbine Parents,
I hope that this email finds you well and enjoying your day!
A bit of just in time information:
- No School Tomorrow (11/11/15)!
- Weather– please make sure that the kids come dressed for the weather. Remember that, unless there are obvious safety concerns, students will be going out for at least two recesses totaling 45 minutes.
- Calendar – (I forgot to add these times in my last email blast
- Movie Night- This Friday, November 13 at 6:00. This is an event hosted by our PTA.
- November 18- 3rd Grade Musical is at 6:30
- Rude vs. Mean. Vs. Bullying: Defining the Differences– This is a great article from the Huff Post. I wanted to share it because I am often grappling with this issue in my office. Check out this short informational article by following this LINK.
- Adopt a Pod– Keeping Columbine clean is a tremendous challenge. This is particularly true on snowy days. Facing constant cuts, BVSD has rightfully chosen to support instruction first and foremost. An additional challenge is that we have two temps right now doing the best that they can. Our custodians are required to do trash, vacuum (twice per week), and clean the bathrooms daily. Deeper cleaning can only be achieved when school is not in session. All this to say that if we are going to keep our students healthy and our school beautiful we need help. Some amazing parents in PTA are organizing to Adopt a Grade Level Pod. I created bins that I will place in every pod for volunteers wanting to do a little bit to help. The chores needed are mostly organizing, dusting, disinfecting, and making sure that displays are neat. PTA parents are also organizing help to shovel when it snows. Thanks in advance to all of you for supporting this effort!
- Ideal School Day– On the next page is BVSD’s communication regarding the Ideal School Day starting next school year. During our PTA, a former Columbine parent the Chair of the BHS Instrumental Music Parents Association, Sarah King, spoke about the importance of keeping Instrumental Music and General Music in 5th grade. You can access the group’s position letter by following this LINK. I shared, hopefully not my own views (my stance is that I want our kids to have every advantage and enrichment opportunity) but some of the challenges associated with scheduling for any school, but in particular a diverse biliteracy school like Columbine. Basically, whatever is added comes at the expense of something else. More often than not compromises have to be reached. Please stay informed on this one.
Thanks to all of you for helping us lower the number of toys in school. It has help tremendously!
October 30, 2015
Newsletter article for elementary schools
Ideal School Day Task Force developing recommendations on elementary schedule
The Ideal School Day Task Force, composed of teachers, administrators and parents, is working on recommendations for a consistent school day for elementary students across the district. The task force’s charge is to solve problems with our current schedule including a need for additional instructional time in math, literacy, science and social studies.
The following recommendations are in stages of development in the task force; final recommendations will not be proposed until December at the earliest. The Task Force is seeking comment/reaction to these ideas through the following link, bvsd.org/idealschoolday.
- Lunch periods to be extended to 25 minutes to address long-standing parent concerns about insufficient time for children to eat.
- Recess to be extended to 45 minutes to meet district regulations on wellness and physical activity.
- Changes to the current structure of music at 5th grade. Boulder Valley School District historically has had a choice model for fifth grade instrumental music. All students take general music; in some schools, instrumental music currently is required for all students while in others it is still a choice. Some schools have started offering instrumental music after school, limiting access to families that can’t provide transportation for their students. The new proposal creates a choice for all families and ensures equity across the district.
- Increased time allocated to art, so students have equal time in art, music and physical education at all grade levels.
- A consistent length of school day for all of the district’s elementary schools.
Currently, the length of the day varies from school to school creating inequitable instructional time.
As the Ideal School Day Task Force continues its work, we will provide updates through emails and our school newsletter. There will be information posted on the district website www.bvsd.org that we will link to our school website.