Community Message December 2017

Community Message December 2017
This is the image for the news article titled Community Message December 2017December 2017

As 2017 comes to a close, we are focused on all that 2018 has in store for our students and schools. Bond-funded maintenance projects will commence at all of our elementary and middle schools. The Windsor High School (WHS) renovations will wrap up, and the Innovation Center will open at the start of the 2018–19 school year. Our biggest project, the new high school in Severance, got under way this year as a lot of dirt was moved; the construction will progress significantly and visibly in 2018 as we prepare for the school to open in the fall of 2019. 

This month’s update is all about Severance High School. That’s right, the school has a name! This month, the school board approved a recommendation for the name of the school, its mascot, and school colors. The recommendation included input from a Severance Middle School student group, the community, and the new high school’s instructional leadership team. Severance High School (SHS) will be the home of the Silver Knights. Its colors are silver, navy, gold, and white. You can now follow SHS on twitter@UKnightedSHS. 

We are fortunate to have a half-dozen Weld RE-4 educators who, in addition to their day jobs, are contracted to support the planning of the new high school. The SHS instructional leadership team includes a high school counselor, math, language arts, social studies, and world language teachers, and a district media/technology expert. SHS’s instructional leadership team is working to develop a school mission, vision, and guiding principles, but its biggest task in 2018 will be to determine the school’s programming and course offerings.

The team is moving forward based on previous program planning work and also, in large part, on the over 1,500 responses received to the question on our district survey this fall about high school opportunities of interest to our community. On the survey, participants could select two programs of interest from a list of seven programs (Concurrent Enrollment, Comprehensive Experience, International Baccalaureate, Project-Based Learning, Advanced Placement Capstone, Career and Technical Education, and Concurrent Enrollment). Concurrent Enrollment, Comprehensive Experience, and Career and Technical Education were selected by the most people. 

This information has provided the SHS instructional leadership team with a clear direction for their program planning work. Our high school principals, Michelle Scallon (WHS) and Chris Garcia (SHS), are also working together closely to align the two high schools’ programs and leverage our educators and facilities to benefit the students in both buildings.

There is a lot of work to do in 2018. A year from now, the hiring of SHS staff will begin, the district high school boundaries will be announced, and we’ll be preparing to launch the course description books for both high schools. We are committed to providing several opportunities next fall and winter for students and parents to learn about both high school options so that everyone can make an informed choice. One thing we are certain of is that while we will have two high schools in 2019, we will remain one community united by our dedication to empowering the success of our students and inspiring them to be innovative as they prepare for their future.

We end 2017 and go into 2018 feeling an enormous amount of support from our community. Thank you! Enjoy the holidays. We look forward to seeing you in the new year.  

Dan Seegmiller