Elementary News and Upcoming Events
Volunteer and Donation News
Volunteering and giving to STEM are vital to the success of our school. Our school has a charter that requires a commitment of 30 volunteer hours per family (15 hours per single-parent family).
To make volunteering easy and seamless, please refer to the Volunteering Basics section that will allow you to set up your volunteer account and keep track of your hours. We are extremely grateful for the time and energy donated by STEM parents each year.
With COVID 19, and visitors or volunteers not being allowed in the building this year, STEM has continued volunteer needs as the year finishes.
Please consider what your family can contribute with time or donations.
The hummingbird represents an ancient symbol of joy and happiness. Its colorful appearance brings good luck and positive energy to our lives.
Thank you for sharing your energy!!
We would like to thank these volunteers, who even though we have not been able to have volunteers in our school, have found a way to fulfill our charter commitment.
- Elizabeth Banko
- Olena Beck
- MacClain Figueroa
- Jennifer Gonyea
- Laura Graber
- Jane Kim
- Brett Kingman
- Karen Lee-Toy
- Jeong Lee
- Jue Liu
- Jane Parsons
- Julie Prince
- Brett Smith
- Amy Winans
- Jan Zhu-Gilje
Please come to the Middle School Front Office to pick up a gift of appreciation.
Fifth Grade Revolutionary War Reenactment
May 18, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Chatfield State Park
Our fifth-grade students will be taking part in the Revolutionary War Reenactment on May 18 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Chatfield State Park.
Specials Day (Field Day)
May 17, from 8:45 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Specials Day is the new version of field day and will be on May 17. It will function a little differently than past field days because we can only do one grade level at a time (to keep with covid policies and cleaning procedures). During specials time for each elementary grade level, that grade will come out to the playfield and rotate between activities designed and run by the specials teachers.
Friday, May 21 from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m.
The 2021 Kindie Continuation Webinar will be held on Friday, May 21 starting at 11 am. This year we will compile the Kindies and Graduating Seniors aspirations into a celebration video. This will be aired on a Zoom webinar that families and friends can attend virtually. Click the button below to join.
STEM PTO Community Movie Night Featuring Back To the Future
Saturday, May 22, from 6-10 p.m. at the Backcountry Outdoor Park
STEM PTO Community Movie Night Featuring Back To the Future will be on May 22, from 6 – 10 p.m. at the Backcountry outdoor park.
This will be a complimentary outdoor event in Backcountry for our STEM School Highlands Ranch families, staff and community. Community partners are invited to set up tents/booths.
PTO will be providing Free Popcorn and Food Trucks and Candy will be available for an additional charge. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
News and Updates
STEM Parent Check-In on Academic Plan Options for the 2021-22 School Year
This survey is for our Parents to provide us with feedback on families’ projected plans for the new school year. Thank you for taking the time to complete this survey to allow us to gather data for our Leadership Team to review and to assist with planning. Our projected plan for the 2021-22 School Year is to return to five days of In-Person learning.
VIRTUAL LEARNING: We are hoping to have a virtual learning option available, but need to gather the data in order to plan. Families choosing the Virtual Academic Plan would have to remain in that plan for the entire semester and understand that if in-person enrollment is at capacity for their grade level, they may not be able to switch to in-person learning for the next semester. For Secondary, the number of course offerings will be limited for each semester so some students’ schedules may need to be adjusted. Virtual learning will also include more synchronous learning opportunities per the updated guidance from CDE.
Please fill out one survey per student that you have.
Please check Infinite Campus to make sure we have your current address. If you have a change of address please email Tiffany Klenke (email@example.com), K-12 Registrar, with a proof of residency. Douglas County School District and STEM School Highlands Ranch only accept the following legal documents as proof of residence:
- warranty deed
- deed of trust
- lease agreement
- tax notice
- county assessor
- notarized letter
Outstanding Fees will move to Collections on May 25
On Tuesday, May 25, the accounts with outstanding fees that fall into the following categories will be sent to collections:
All outstanding student accounts over $200 that have not:
- Contacted Ashley Westfall (firstname.lastname@example.org) personally or responded to outstanding fee emails.
- Actively set up a payment plan with the school
- Made any payments against the balance
If an account goes to collections, it will not negatively impact your credit if you respond to them within 30 days. Once it is sent to collections, STEM can no longer accept payments on our end so you will have to work it out with Alpine after they are submitted on May 25.
Nominations Open for 2022 CDE Colorado Teacher of the Year
Do you know an exceptionally dedicated, knowledgeable and skilled K-12 teacher? Nominate one of your colleagues to apply for the 2022 Colorado Teacher of the Year award. The nomination form is now open. When you nominate someone, they will be notified of their nomination by CDE and encouraged to take the next step to apply.
Each year, the Colorado Teacher of the Year Program honors an exceptionally dedicated, knowledgeable, and skilled K-12 classroom teacher to represent the entire profession in the state. The selected teacher will automatically become Colorado’s nominee for the National Teacher of the Year competition.
This special teacher also gets to attend the following events:
- The National Teacher of the Year Induction, an opportunity for the country’s teachers of the year to come together and understand their individual identities in their new roles.
- Washington Week, an opportunity to go to the nation’s capital for recognition. Teachers will get to visit the White House and meet the president as well as attend the National Teacher of the Year gala.
- NASA Space Camp, where teachers participate in a version of astronaut training designed specifically for educators to take strategies and concepts back to their classrooms.
- College Football Playoff National Championship Game to participate in the College Football Playoff Foundation’s Extra Yard for Teachers event, which elevates the teaching profession by inspiring and empowering quality teachers.
All this can be possible for one exceptional Colorado teacher so tell the one you’re thinking of right now to apply. Nominate them using this form via the button to the right by June 15, 2021.
iReady Assessment Information
Students have been completing the iReady Diagnostic assessment within language arts and math classes during this week and through May 14. The information gathered from this assessment will assist staff in identifying gaps in learning and areas of acceleration as we plan for the upcoming school year. If your Virtual Learner is taking the assessment at home, please support your student in completing the assessment on their own to the best of their ability in order to allow for an accurate picture of student needs. Please do not spend an enormous amount of time on this task, an hour is the average. If you would like a copy of your student’s results, please complete the form via the button below and it will be emailed to you.
Learn more about Standards-Based Learning at STEM
STEM School Highlands Ranch is moving toward Standards-Based Learning and Reporting to measure and communicate students’ learning and academic growth and achievement with greater accuracy. By switching we are able to provide clearer feedback to students based on specific learning goals.
In a traditional hundred-point grading system, grades are generated from the work assigned to students. These scores often include points for extra credit or deductions for behavior, such as turning work in late, and are an average of all of these things. This system does not take into account the learning process and doesn’t accurately show what a student can do. There are also biases within this system since teachers apply points differently. Students often do not know what a grade means and grade meanings can vary from class to class. Earning points becomes the motivating factor for students, causing them to chase points instead of knowledge.
Standards-Based Learning focuses on the mastery of essential content.
STEM Using School Messenger
To help expand our ability to communicate with our families, we will be rolling out the use of the Douglas County School District’s School Messenger platform to send notifications to families. The use of School Messenger allows for us to add text messaging and phone calls to the emails we already send through Infinite Campus. We will be implementing School Messenger to assist with communications around COVID-19 quarantine notifications. Currently, members of our admin team make individual calls for each quarantine. Implementing School Messenger will allow the team to notify families more efficiently.
Elementary Lost and Found
It’s that time of year. If you think your student is missing items, please stop by our Lost & Found to look through what has been left behind. The Lost & Found is located in the Elementary School Lobby. All items not picked up will be donated at the end of the school year.
Student illustrator contest!
Do you like to draw? Have you ever dreamed of illustrating a children’s book? Mrs. Ridder is looking for a budding student artist to illustrate an upcoming children’s book. If you are interested, please contact Mrs. Ridder (email@example.com) for more information.
Special Offer from DR Photo
STEM families, we have partnered with DR Photo to offer our families yard signs and banners to celebrate your student’s graduation (Kindergarten or High School). If you would like to order a sign or banner please click the button to the right.
We also are offering graduation portrait sessions. You can schedule a private session at their Littleton studio by clicking the link to the right.
School Photos Update
STEM had picture Day on February 16 & 17 for students needing a current school photo.
- There will be a Class Composite created for each class
- Parents will have the opportunity to purchase individual and class composite photos.
If your student was unable to take advantage of the picture days at STEM, please set an appointment to have their picture taken at the photographer’s studio. Check out the buttons to the left to schedule an appointment, or order photos.
Summer Camps at STEM
We are excited to host a variety of summer camps this upcoming summer.
- Camp Invention (K-6) | June 7-11, 2021
- Cyber-SPY Camp (K-2) | June 14-18, 2021
- Cyber Detectives (3-5) | June 21-25, 2021
- FRC 4418’s Lego Mindstorm Camp (K-5)
- Peter Pan Theater Camp (K-5) | June 21-25, 2021
Please visit our Enrichment page to view current openings and sign up.