Elementary News and Updates (01/19/24)

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Director Updates

A Message from Mrs. McElroy, Elementary School Director

Dear Elementary School Families,

Welcome back to school! Happy 2024. I hope you all had a wonderful break. While I didn’t have big plans for my time off, I did enjoy having time at home with my family! It is hard to believe we are entering the second half of the school year already! As we kick off 2024 and the second semester, here are a few updates and reminders:

Arrival and Dismissal:

School starts at 7:40 a.m. If you are arriving after 7:40 a.m., you will need to sign your student(s) in to have the tardy excused. Afternoon dismissal is staggered. K/1 is dismissed at 2:25 p.m. (Green Placard), grades 2-5 are at 2:35 p.m. (Orange Placard), and Secondary dismissal is at 2:55 p.m. (Yellow Placard). Please pick your student(s) up at the appropriate time. If you do not have a secondary student, you must pick up your student at either 2:25 p.m. or 2:35 p.m., depending on the grade.

Behavior Expectations:

At STEM, we spend a great amount of time teaching and re-teaching behavior expectations and social-emotional skills. It is important to consistently review while also allowing students time to practice these skills and expectations. Ms. J and our amazing instructional assistant team spent the first few days back at school reviewing our behavior expectations and Spartan Characteristics with every class. Please spend some time with your student reviewing the behavior expectations.

Cafeteria Expectations:

Lunch is a time for students to socialize with friends and to take a break from academics. However, there are still expectations for student behavior in the cafeteria. Students are also responsible for assisting with clean up. We are starting a new process to help manage student behaviors and to increase the communication between school and home. Students who are not meeting the expectations during lunch will be given a slip from the IAs. The teacher will communicate home that your student received a behavior slip. We ask that you talk to your student about why they received the slip and how they can change their behavior for next time. We are also asking that the behavior slips are signed by the parents and returned to the classroom teacher. Please reach out to me or Jessica Manzanares if you have any questions.

STEM’s Got Talent Auditions:

Calling all of our talented K-12 students!!! It’s time to prepare your audition for our 12th annual STEM’s Got Talent Show! The show will take place on Thursday, March 7. Auditions will occur on Wednesday, Feb. 7 and Thursday, Feb. 8, in room 149 (secondary music room). Please follow these steps if you are interested in auditioning:

Step 1 – Click here to complete the audition form and sign up for a time slot.

Step 2 – Practice, Practice, Practice

Step 3 – Show up on time on your audition date. Be sure to bring everything. You need a polished audition, including your background music and/or links.

Contact Mrs. Ridder (maura.ridder@https://stemk12.org) with any questions.


We are always looking for volunteers in the cafeteria, playground or driveline. Please reach out to Mona Loptein (mona.loptein@https://stemk12.org) for questions and log into the Raptor Volunteer portal to sign-up for spots.

Lost and Found:

During the break, we donated over 100 clothing items (coats, hoodies, sweatshirts, etc.). I encourage you to please write your student’s name on their belongings. It helps us return the items when they show up in lost and found. I also encourage you to periodically check the lost and found for items your child may have lost. We also encourage students not to bring items of monetary or sentimental value.

Important Dates

  • February 2 – PTO Elementary Sweetheart Dance
  • February 5-9 – Stone Canyon Field Trip – 5th grade
  • February 6 – Colorado History Center Field Trip – 4th grade
  • February 6 – STEM Board Meeting
  • February 7-8 – STEM’s Got Talent Show
  • February 16 – PD Day – NO SCHOOL
  • February 19 – President’s Day
  • February 29 – PTO Skate Night

Have a wonderful weekend. Please reach out if you have any questions or concerns.

In Partnership,

Amie McElroy, Elementary Director

Upcoming Events

STEM All-Events Calendar

Please take a moment to check the STEM All-Events Calendar on our website.

There are lots of events already scheduled so please take a moment to take a look at the calendar to familiarize yourself with some of the events at the start of school. This calendar will continue to be updated throughout the summer as we get closer to the start of school.

Love and Logic Parent Information Night

Monday, Jan. 22, from 5-7 p.m. – via Zoom or in-person in the High School Commons

Join us on Monday, Jan. 22, from 5-7 p.m. for our fourth installment of Love and Logic, focusing on Avoiding Power Struggles. The session will be held live in the High School Commons, or via Zoom. Attendees will learn about:

  • That perceived control is a basic human emotional need
  • That we can either give control on our terms or wait for our children to take it from us on their terms
  • Specific guidelines of sharing control through choices
  • Rules for the appropriate use of choices
  • When not to give choices

Middle School Course Selection Information Night

Thursday, Jan. 25, from 5:30-6:30 p.m. – Middle School Cafeteria

The Middle School Counseling and the Teacher Support Team will be holding a Course Selection Parent Information Night for families with Middle School students, as well as our families with fifth graders who will be staying at STEM for Middle School. Families will get an overview of the Academic Planning Guide, as well as how to help their students select their courses for next year. This is a very important event and all families are strongly encouraged to attend. Please park in the Elementary School or the High School Staff Parking Lot and enter through the Athletics Entrance.

To prepare, please click on the buttons below to review the Academic Planning Guide as well as the corresponding Course Selection Worksheets. Please bring any questions to the Parent Information Night.

STEM's Got Talent Auditions

Wednesday, Feb. 7 and Thursday, Feb. 8, from 3-6 p.m. – Location TBD

Calling all of our talented K-12 students!!! It’s time to prepare your audition for our 12th annual STEM’s Got Talent Show!

Auditions will take place on Wednesday and Thursday, February 7th and 8th in room 149 (secondary music room).

Please follow these steps if you are interested in auditioning:

  • Step 1 – Click the button below to complete the audition form and sign up for a time slot.
  • Step 2 – Practice, Practice, Practice
  • Step 3 – show up, on time, on your audition date. Be sure to bring everything. you need for a polished audition, including your background music and/or links.

Contact Mrs. Ridder (maura.ridder@https://stemk12.org) with any questions.

News and Updates

Driveline Reminders for Elementary Families

  • Please remember that Driveline opens at 7:10 a.m. and that students should not be dropped off prior to that time. The Elementary Aides will come out to open the car doors when we are prepared to receive students.
  • School starts at 7:40 a.m., so all students should arrive prior to that time. Any students who arrive at 7:40 or later must be signed in by their parent/guardian.
  • In the afternoon, please ONLY come at your designated pick-up times. Click here to review your pick-up times.
    • For families who are coming to pick up for the 2:30 p.m. time frame, please do not park on the street and/or block the business driveways along Barrons Blvd. Prior to break, we noticed many cars blocking driveways and trying to access the driveline prior to 2:30 p.m. If this continues, we will request for the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office to come out to issue tickets to anyone stopping/standing on an active roadway. Please help us be good neighbors by following the Traffic Management Plan.
  • Please make sure that your PikMyKid information is up to date and that you have your student’s pick-up mode updated in the app. If someone other than you is picking up your student, please make sure to have your delegations set prior to pick-up time.
  • If you are in need of a new placard, please email support@https://stemk12.org to request a placard. Please include your student’s name, teacher’s name and number of placards requested.

CMAS Testing Information

We’re heading into testing season! Parents, please be sure to check our testing calendar and the State Mandated Testing page on our website to stay in the know of all of the upcoming important dates and how to prepare. Please reach out to julie.adamek@https://stemk12.org with any questions.

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