Secondary News and Updates (05/14/21)

Secondary-School News

Secondary News and 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.


Upcoming Events

Important Senior Dates

May 20 at 2 pm at EchoPark Stadium

We just received news that each graduate can get up to 15 tickets to graduation. Seniors will receive information on how to sign-up for tickets the week of May 10. Please make sure you have completed your ICAP and paid all your senior fees (required to walk for graduation). If you haven’t had the chance to fill out the Phonetic Spelling of Your Name, so Mr. Ryan and Dr. Leddy can pronounce them correctly, and are attending graduation please do so by Wednesday, April 14. Reach out to Karen Adam (karen.adam@ to get that form.

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 pto@ with any questions.

STEM Community Movie Night Featuring Back To the Future

Middle School Fairytale Dance

Saturday, May 22, from 2-4 p.m. in the Middle School Parking Lot

Spring Fairy Tale Dance Poster

Middle School Ice Cream Social

Tuesday, May 25, from 3-4 p.m. in the High School Parking Lot & Middle School Commons

Middle School Ice cream social

Last Day of School Information for Secondary

Tuesday, May 25, from 7:50-11:30 a.m.

All 6-11th grade students have a half-day on Tuesday, May 25. In-person learners will be in school from 7:50-11:30 a.m, Virtual learners have the option to join in-person for the last day or participate in a virtual celebration.

8th, 9th, 10th, and 11th Graders: You are invited to the Welcome to High School Party on Tuesday, May 25 during school hours! In order to abide by COVID guidelines, students will be in small groups, outside & primarily in High School classrooms playing games, socializing, and enjoying time together before the official start to summer. The High School Student Government is working on some fun plans, more information will be emailed as the date approaches.

6th & 7th Graders: Middle School Student Government is planning an end-of-year Middle School Party during school hours! You will be in small groups rotating through different activities including an ice cream social and chance for some outdoor activities as well.

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.

Secondary Music Promotional Video

Students interested in taking any of our music classes next school year should reach out to their counselor via email as soon as possible.

Registrar News

Please check Infinite Campus to make sure we have your current address. If you have a change of address please email Tiffany Klenke (tiffany.klenke@, 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 (ashley.westfall@ 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.

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.

Reminder of Senior Fees

The STEM Business Office would like to remind families of seniors, that if there are any outstanding fees on a student’s account, they must be paid for prior to graduation. Emails have been sent to families who have an outstanding balance. Fees can be paid for through MySchoolBucks.

2019-20 Yearbooks Available

It’s the last chance to get your 2019-2020 Yearbook and they’re on sale! Grab one from the Middle School Office for $10 (checks only). There’s no better way to preserve your 2019-2020 memories.

Cap & Gown Information

Caps & Gowns will be available for pick-up on Monday, May 17 from the Middle School Front Office starting at 10 a.m.

Senior Honor Night Webinar and Presentation

On Wednesday, May 12, STEM held the annual Senior Honor Night. Click the button below to view the webinar recording and also view the PDF presentation.

Graduation Information

Graduation is at EchoPark Stadium (11901 Newlin Gulch Blvd, Parker, CO 80134) on Thursday, May 20 at 2 pm. 11901 Newlin Gulch Blvd, Parker, CO 80134

Please arrive at 12:30 for rehearsal. Please read this information from the district regarding expectations for graduates and guests.

You may invite 15 guests, please let us know if you will be attending and how many tickets you will be using. There is also a place to request more tickets. The sign-up will be your guest’s “ticket” at the stadium.

Thanks so much for all your patience and please let Mrs Adam know if you have any questions via email at karen.adam@

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.

CyberPatriot XIV - Registration - Interest Form

Registrations for CyberPatriot XIV are now open. Please complete the Interest form via the form below if you are interested to register for the next academic year. Once we get the interest number, teams will be registered so the teams can access the practice/training/exhibition rounds during summer as well. For any questions: please email Ms. Basu at simi.basu@

HS Leaders Needed for Camp Invention

Are you a High School student looking to complete some community service hours this summer? Come volunteer with Camp Invention during the week of June 7t-11! As a leadership intern, you help to guide elementary students through various fun and engaging modules throughout the day and build relationships with some amazing kids! Reach out to Sara.Phelps@ for more information.

DCSD Nutrition Services Summer Feeding Program 2021 information

SummerFeedingFlyer2021.Final.5.10.21 - English

HS Leaders Needed for Camp Invention

Are you a High School student looking to complete some community service hours this summer? Come volunteer with Camp Invention during the week of June 7t-11! As a leadership intern, you help to guide elementary students through various fun and engaging modules throughout the day and build relationships with some amazing kids! Reach out to Sara.Phelps@ for more information.

Secondary Lost and Found

It’s that time of year. If you think your student is missing items, please have your student stop by our Lost & Found to look through what has been left behind. The Secondary Lost & Found is located outside the Middle School Cafeteria Doors. All items not picked up will be donated at the end of the school year.

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 syhttps://stem, 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 syhttps://stem does not take into account the learning process and doesn’t accurately show what a student can do. There are also biases within this syhttps://stem 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.

Buy Your STEM Class Shirts Today!

As is a tradition at STEM, your class shirts for the 2021-2022 school year are now available for purchase! Please use the links below corresponding with your incoming class to order today! All orders close on May 5, so make sure to order soon. If you have any questions, you can email tavin.turner@s.

Grading Scale Change for Semester 2

STEM School has decided to adjust the second-semester grading scale for our secondary level, as outlined below (with the exception of Concurrent Enrollment courses).

STEM Secondary Grade Scale – Second Semester 2020-2021

  • 88 – 100% = A
  • 76 – 87% = B
  • 64 – 75% = C
  • 52 – 63% = D
  • below 52% = F

We strongly feel this decision is the right thing to do for our secondary school students to ensure that their future plans are not derailed due to a pandemic that is out of their control. Thank you again for your continued patience and support for the STEM community.

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.

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. 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.

Athletics News/Updates

Season D Registration is LIVE

Registration is LIVE on the website for Season D sports – if you are planning to participate please register! If you have any questions you can reach out to Mrs. MH (anna.magle-haberek@ or any of the head coaches for your sport! (Chris.Smith@ -Track and Field, Forrest.Walker@ – Lacrosse, Edward.Cooper@ – Girls Soccer).

Lacrosse Season has started!

We’re so excited! The Spartan Lacrosse Team has finally started practicing. Practices are at Plum Valley Park Monday through Friday from 3:30-4:45 p.m. The season began on April 26 and is comprised of ninth through 12th-grade students. See the photos to the right to see our team!

Ultimate Frisbee Photos

An update from Brent Weiffenbach on how the Ultimate Frisbee Team is doing this year:

“The team is really improving this season and it’s been great fun this season! We will have states the weekend of 5/8, the team is sure to play hard and have fun as we wrap up the season. We are all looking forward to next fall to play even more!”

Fundraising Opportunities for STEM Track and Field

There are several ways our community can help to support our STEM Track and Field Team this season.

King Soopers Community Rewards!

  1. Log in to your account and locate the Community Rewards section.
  2. Add the following Organizational Number: XG949
  3. Save and start shopping!
King Soopers Community Rewards

Enrichment Update

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.

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