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Nov. 19 Board Briefing

Teacher recognition



The Douglas County Board of Education convened for business at 7:00 p.m. on November 19, 2013. The Board conducted business items and engaged public comment from a crowd of students, parents, teachers, and community members.



Board Recognition

The Board of Education was proud to recognize the achievement of one of fantastic support staff member, a group of innovative DCSD teachers and some extremely talented students.

Dr. Peter ThompsonDr. Peter Thompson is the school psychologist at Rocky Heights Middle School and Traumatic Brain Injury Coordinator for the Douglas County School District. The Colorado Society of School Psychologists named Dr. Thompson the Colorado School Psychologist of the Year and he received his award a couple weeks ago.

This is Thompson’s eleventh year with DCSD. Peter holds various advanced degrees in educational psychology, school psychology and school-neuropsychology. He is a Nationally Certified School-Neuropsychologist.

What makes him stand out however, is the way he views his role as a school psychologist as more than just a career. Over the past nine years, he and DCSD’s Director of Health Services, Paulette Joswick, have worked to build a cross-District network that identifies and treats students with brain injuries.

Now, they’re working to ensure each and every school has its own team focused on this work, consisting of school nurses, psychologists, social workers, counselors and speech language specialists. The team has become an example for other districts throughout the state, which are just beginning to address the danger of concussions in sports and elsewhere.

Dr. Thompson will compete for the national school psychologist of the year award which will be given by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) during their annual conference in Washington, DC in February.

Kim Kehr, an 8th grade math teacher at Cimarron Middle School, was named a 2013 Math Hero by Raytheon. As part of the MathMovesU program, Raytheon honors effective math teachers, math coaches or math event coordinators who not only go out of their way to help students learn math, but find ways to instill a love for the subject. The company looks for those math instructors that are dedicated to improving math education and student participation.

Before becoming a teacher, Kehr was an aeronautical engineer for the Air Force. She often uses real world examples, often from her own life, to ensure students understand the real world applications to the math problems they’re using.

Kehr is among nearly 30 Math Heroes who will be honored this year, primarily in the eight states where Raytheon is located, including Colorado. She will receive a $2,500 grant and Cimarron Middle School will receive a matching grant in the same amount.

The Math Heroes have the opportunity to direct how the funds are spent. Kehr and her team are thinking about using it to enhance their classrooms with iPads, clickers, and other tech tools to enhance the use of a SMART Board that is already installed. 

NSPA honoreesThe Board also celebrated four students that were recently honored by the National Scholastic Press Association for the Picture of the Year contest, Alexandra Merrill, Brina Sandoval, Connor Chase, and Emily MacLean.

In the Middle School division there are ten finalists nationally; four of them are from Douglas County Schools, including one from Mesa, another from Rocky Heights and two from Sierra Middle School. This is also the sixth consecutive year that Sierra has had at least one finalist and the fourth year that Sierra has had two finalists.

During the national ceremony in Boston last week, Emily MacLean was named the first place finisher in the contest. The Mesa Middle School yearbook also took second place for middle school yearbooks. 

Lastly, the Board honored all of the DCSD teachers that were a part of our World Class Education Pilot Program. While the program will be open to every teacher this year, we had a very special group of highly-effective teachers who took part in the program’s first year and provided us with great feedback that has made the program better.

This group of teachers have been instrumental in helping us refine the World Class Targets. Throughout the process, the team took feedback from the pilot participants and made improvements.

All of the teachers who participated were honored:

Sonja Herring Cimarron Middle School
Katrina Winsor Legend High School
Mary Lisa Blevins Harper Mammoth Heights Elementary
Virginia Stafford Mammoth Heights Elementary
Kristi Piccone Rock Canyon High School
Corinne Carlson Rock Canyon High School
Shawndra Fordham Rock Canyon High School
Nancy Mann Sage Canyon Elementary
Cheryl Brost Sage Canyon Elementary
Kristin Wright Wildcat Mountain Elementary
Jennifer Amos Mesa Middle School
Stephanie Kawamura Pine Lane Elementary
Stephanie Crowe Sage Canyon Elementary
Shawna Stafford Sand Creek Elementary
Action Items

The Board of Education unanimously passed a resolution honoring the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address.  Students from Ben Franklin Academy joined the Board in the commemoration by reading the Gettysburg Address.

Superintendent's Report

Chief Financial Officer Bonnie Betz and Budget Director Scott Smith provided an update on FY 2013-2014 1st  Quarter Financial Report.  View report

Chris Lawson, InspirED Innovation Project Director and Flagstone Elementary Principal Kelly Smith gave an update on the development and progress of InspirED Innovation.

Board Committee and Liaison Reports

After serving for eight years, Board of Education President John Carson marked his final meeting by offering farewell comments. Read more

Board of Education Vice President Kevin Larsen made a unity statement.

Public Comment
Adoption of Consent Agenda

The Board voted by a margin of 6-0 to adopt the consent agenda:  Staff recommendations, detailed in Agenda Items #16-#20, organized for the Board of Education block approval.


audio iconSession 1 audio recording

January 14, 2014 | By SCPaulsen | Category: Board of Education

District News

kids running outside as part of a race

DCSD is requesting parent input on the health and wellness of our students. Last year, DCSD received a large planning grant from Colorado Health Foundation in an effort to assess how the district supports students through the lens of the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child model (WSCC). The mission of this grant is to review the current state of DCSD's student health and wellness program, and then formulate a three to five-year plan based on stakeholders’ needs, the latest research, and best practices. As part of this process, we would like your input.

How are we doing?

We want to hear from you! How often do you prefer to receive email newsletters from DCSD? How can we improve the news and information you receive? This brief survey should only take a minute or two of your time. Thank you for giving us your input!

Tell us what you think, here!


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It may look like a plain, white shipping container was just parked on the backyard grounds of Mountain Vista High School. The contents of the container are anything but plain, though. Walking inside the container, different colors of ambient lighting glow, futuristic-looking equipment and tall towers are suspended from the ceiling, and the humidity level is set to 70 percent. The container has been recycled into a new kind of learning opportunity for students.