Meet the Administrative Team
At Gold Rush we believe our purpose is to serve the broader school community. We also believe that leadership is a collaborative endeavor. In addition to the Principal, Assistant Principal and Professional Learning Specialist, teachers, parents, community members and students assume an essential voice. Our school leadership team, comprised of teachers and specialists from all grade levels and departments, continuously plan for improvement. Parents and community members also provide valuable insight we gather this input from PTO and the School Accountability Committee (SAC) meetings. Our ultimate goal is to model and foster student leadership and we work closely with our student council to further efforts in our school and community.
Dr. Jenny Brown, Principal
My name is Jenny Brown and I have worked in school administration for 10 years. I completed my undergraduate studies at the University of Notre Dame and went onto pursue my master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Wisconsin, Madison while working as a third grade teacher. As I worked as an elementary school principal in the suburbs of both Massachusetts and Illinois I began my doctoral studies, which I completed in the spring of 2015.
I am proud to have served as the principal of Gold Rush Elementary School since August of 2012. I feel fortunate to be part of such a tremendous school community! I believe that educating children is a true partnership and I value how our parents, teachers, students and support staff collaborate daily to best support each individual child. I also value our warm school environment and our collective commitment to fostering critical thinking and civic responsibility.
Libby Bergner, Assistant Principal
I am so fortunate to be a part of a community that is dedicated to making learning a joyful, lifelong experience for students and staff. I believe every child is unique and possesses the ability to do great things in the world. I believe in developing this potential by celebrating differences, fostering creativity and collaboration, and establishing strong relationships with students and their families. I believe children should be in a safe place where they can express their opinions and nurture their own ideas.
This is my 17th year in education and have spent most of my time as a classroom teacher. I have taught every level from preschool to sixth grade, with the exception of third. I was part of the core team that opened Gold Rush in 2008. Here, I have taught sixth and second graders. This will be my fourth year in administration and I feel truly honored to continue serving Gold Rush in this capacity. Thank you for entrusting your children with us. I love this community and live here in Parker with my husband and four children. We are a very busy family and enjoy sports, traveling, and being with relatives. I am very excited and look forward to working with students, families, and the community to make this an incredible school year!
Kristi Barta, Building Resource Teacher
I love my position as Professional Learning Specialist (PLS) at Gold Rush Elementary! After teaching in classrooms from grades 2-7 for 28 years (and loving every minute), I started this position supporting both teachers and students in July of 2012. I have a strong belief that students need to be supported and challenged. I also believe that a safe environment that fosters this challenge is key to success. I thoroughly believe Gold Rush provides that environment.
I was born and raised in North Dakota and began my career in education there. Once I moved to Colorado, I taught in Commerce City for 5 years. The past 20 years, I have had the pleasure and privilege to work with the amazing students and families in Douglas County Schools. My husband is a retired music teacher, and he spent the last 10 years of his career here in Douglas County also. We have two sons, Ryan and Luke, who both attended Gold Rush and are now at Cimarron MIddle School and Legend High School.
My role on the leadership team includes the following:
Staff Developer: Plan, prepare, and implement staff development based on student data, teacher needs, and best practices in instruction and assessment. I also communicate information on resources such as instructional materials, training opportunities, and district information.
Mentor: Provide support for new teachers to meet state and district induction requirements. I also mentor all teachers through professional development opportunities.
Coach: Assist teachers with informal goal setting and provide support of student learning through observation, modeling, co-teaching, feedback, and data analysis.
Facilitator: Assist with processes and meetings at school and district levels. For me, this includes the role of Gifted and Talented coordinator. As the G/T Coordinator at Gold Rush, I work with parents and teachers in writing and tracking Advanced Learning Plans.
Collaborative Member of the Building Leadership Team: Collaborate with our leadership team in planning, preparing, and implementing professional learning opportunities based on school and district goals. I am also a "go to" person for student enrichment and learning opportunities.
Digger, Positive Behavior Specialist
Hi! My name is Digger, and I am the mascot at Gold Rush Elementary, home of the Golden Retrievers! The golden retriever was selected by children to be our mascot because we are kind, loyal, smart and service oriented (just like our students). I have the wonderful job of spending time with the class that earned the most golden tickets for the week. Students earn golden tickets for making good choices and going for the GOLD, which means they are following our school rules: Give respect, Own your actions, Listen and learn, and Do your best.
Each day, the Words of Wisdom read during morning announcements help students think about making positive choices. It is a really close call each week determining where I will spend my time, our students are so well behaved!
If you would like to know more about ethical behavior at Gold Rush, please refer to the Parent Handbook!