April 14, 2016
- 2016-17 Hiring Announcement!
On behalf of the hiring committee, I am excited to share that we have our four new teachers for the 2016-17 school year. All approved by our board last night! A huge thanks goes out to our hiring committee for their time and effort in ensuring we hired outstanding teachers:
Parents: Andrea Foote, Board member, Erica Baruch, Kate Ruder
Teachers/Admin: Jim, Lis, Julie, Nichole, Aubrey, John
We each pre-screened 48 applications and collectively decided on 12 to interview. Interviews were conducted last week over the course of two days.
After the interviews we forwarded 7 candidates to do sample lessons for us which took place this week. On Wednesday of this week, we concorded, as a committee, on the four candidates you see here. I will forward you their bios as soon as they are available. Suffice it to say that we are very excited about each of these candidates and what they will bring to us as a school and community.
Shannon Waugh, who has been working with us this past year will continue in this position as a ½ teacher.
Gianna Fable, will also be joining the ½ team. Gianna has most recently been teaching at the Studio School in Denver.
Emmy Kurtz, will be joining the ¾ team. Emmy, is a Horizons K-8 alumni and has had experience both at the Rocky Mountain School for Expeditionary Learning and most recently at Isabella Byrd Community School, founded by long time Horizons teachers in Denver.
Katelyn Grant, also joining the ¾ team has spent the last two years working at Federal Heights Elementary School in Thornton.
Our new ½ team! Aubrey, Nichole, Shannon and Gianna
Our new ¾ team! Julie, Adam, Emmy, Katelyn
We are excited to have these highly qualified teachers join our Horizons K-8 team and community!
- Horizons K-8 Spring Gala and Auction
We look forward to seeing everyone this coming Saturday, April 16th at the St. Julien for an evening of fun and community as we come together to support our school. A huge thanks to Barb and Connie, our Auction Coordinators, and their team who have worked tirelessly to create such an amazing experience for us all.
I’m so pleased to share we had an outstanding turnout for our March Council meeting! Between our new online interface and people who were able to attend in person, we had 68 participants! Thank you! Our focus of the meeting was “Looking Ahead”. This meeting was an opportunity for the community as a whole to come together and be part of the conversation and brainstorming as we take on innovating and moving our program forward as a school. We will be taking this thinking into account as we work to create our plans and funding priorities over the next year or so. Thanks to all who were able to join us! Please see the link below for a summary of the many thoughtful conversations that were had and join us next Thursday for Council when we will talk about how we are allocating funds for the 2016-17 school year along with other great information!
Summary of Council Conversation
Faculty has been working over the past few weeks to hone in on our priorities for spending our capital improvement monies we received this year from the state. We will be meeting this week as a “Design Team” with a consultant several of us met at an EdCamp hosted in Denver to look at our learning spaces. We hope to emerge from this process with a clear plan for continuing to upgrade both our spaces and our furniture to better support students and their learning in the 21st Century!
Our focus for the past two talks was Health and Wellness and Curriculum Mapping. Both topics struck a chord for our parent community and have been well attended. Please join me on Friday mornings following drop off in the cafeteria, as we have an informal time to ask questions and explore topics of meaning to our parent community. Please see HERE for a resource bin for parents that we created in response to our last meeting on Health and Wellness. In May, we will be exploring Social Networking and Online Safety as we head into the summer months.
We have received our preliminary revenue numbers from BVSD for the 16-17 school year. The faculty has been working hard on developing our funding priorities, which will be presented to the Board this week. Please don’t miss the opportunity to join us at Council on April 21st to give your input as to how we will focus our Council funds for 16-17. Final budget decisions will be voted on in May by Council and in June by the Board.
- Become a Horizons Board Member
We have three open spots for the 16-17 school year on our Board. These spots are two year terms and the only requirement is that you have been a parent here at Horizons for at least two years. The choice to commit to becoming a board member is a significant one. Board membership is a truly impactful way to support and be involved in our school. Providing the fiduciary oversight of our school, board members help us to make prudent decisions as a community and keep us aligned with our values. If you would like to be considered for one of these positions, please email John a short letter of interest by April 18th. These letters will be published in Skylines on April 18th prior to our April 21st Council where you can introduce yourself and speak to the community about why you would like to be on the board. The parent vote for board members takes place in our May 19th council meeting. Please see John and/or one of our current parent board members if you would like more information about board membership here at Horizons K-8.
Please join us after drop off on April 22nd as we celebrate and give thanks for all that you do to help Horizons K-8 be the special school that it is! We will have treats in the cafeteria and look forward to the opportunity to express our gratitude in person.
- New Student Survey for 5th-8th Graders
I have been working on a committee with the Boulder Valley School District to help support their work in learning new ways to support social and emotional learning over the past few months. One of the results of this work is to replace what was known as the School Climate Survey with the Student Tenacity Survey. We have decided to have our 5th-8th grade students participate in this survey in early May. See here to learn more: Student Tenacity Survey and please let us know if you have any questions about this work.
- Ultimate Peace Group to Visit Horizons K-8
Wednesday, April 13th our school will have the distinct pleasure to host the Ultimate Peace Group as they travel across the country making peace via ultimate frisbee!
Ultimate Peace: http://www.ultimatepeace.org/youth-leadership/
Ultimate Peace’s Friendship Tour offers the rare opportunity for audiences to meet and interact with exceptional and diverse teenagers from the Middle East. Ultimate Peace is a non-profit, non-political organization using this values-based sport to build bridges between Arab Israeli, Israeli Jewish, and Palestinian youth. These compelling young leaders talk about their participation in one of the fastest-growing team sports in the world and the groundbreaking program Ultimate Peace offers in their tumultuous region.
Your student may have come home last week and shared with you that we went to church! As a reminder, we are required by the State of Colorado to conduct a monthly fire drill and a monthly “other” drill. These other drills consist of lockdown, lockout, shelter in place, and evacuations. Last week we conducted our all school evacuation drill. Our evacuation site is conveniently located across the street at the Mountain View Church. Our students did a fabulous job taking this task very seriously and we are grateful as, with all of these drills, by practicing regularly we will be well prepared in the event of an emergency. Please let me or any of your teachers know if you have any questions about our monthly drills.
- Horizons K-8 is a School that Learns!
We ‘re having more and more opportunities to learn from and share with other schools both locally, across the state and country. Over the past few months we have hosted various groups from schools that are wanting to know more about how to create a personalized learning environment that works with the whole child. We have been grateful for the opportunity to share what we know and also learn from others during these exchanges.
- Spring is Here! Time to Build our Community Garden!
We are beginning to place orders for the garden materials. The gravel has been moved out of the area, we have a surveyor coming to layout the garden beds, and now all we need is YOU!! Please see the sign up sheets in the front hallway or on our website (program tab > gardens) and plan to join us as we co-create our new learning space, a garden!