By Josh Griffin, Principal
I hope that this edition of the Jaguar Tracks finds you and your family doing well and enjoying a well-deserved break this summer. Our community, state, and nation have faced many challenges in 2020, and since the end of the school year we have seen new tragedy and challenges in our society. The tragic death of George Floyd in Minnesota on May 25th, and the resulting protests throughout the nation and world, shed light on the challenges of discrimination and inequity in our country. My heart goes out to Mr. Floyd’s family and loved ones, and all that have been impacted by discrimination in our country.
I understand and accept the challenge of leading D’Evelyn in a manner that honors, respects, and supports all members of our community. The D’Evelyn Founding Document states, “All students, staff and parents will be expected to maintain a behavior standard that demonstrates respect for authority, others, and self. Responsibility, honesty, self-control, kindness and fairness will be encouraged and expected.” We call upon all individuals in the D’Evelyn community to act in accordance with these important values. In living and working with these values in mind, we have a strong foundation in place to ensure all members of our community are treated with dignity and respect.
However, I also understand from conversations with students, graduates, teachers, and parents, that there have been times when people within our community have not felt appropriate care, support, or treatment. I am committed to listening and understanding the student experience in a manner that allows us to grow and improve as a school community going forward. This task will require commitment, teamwork, collaboration, and most importantly, active listening from all involved. As we proceed into the 2020-2021 school year, our administration, faculty, and staff will be discussing and reflecting upon our practices to ensure that we are honoring our Founding Document, providing all students a rich liberal arts education that will prepare them for active, positive contributions in their communities.
Several additional updates regarding the upcoming school year:
The Jeffco Schools Board of Education had discussed the possibility of eliminating bus transportation for students to Jeffco option schools, including D’Evelyn and Dennison, along with Manning, Free Horizon Montessori, and Jeffco Open School. As a result of an increase in funding from both the state and federal governments, this budget cut is no longer on the table for the 2020-2021 school year. D’Evelyn students will have access to bus transportation next school year.
A significant portion of the funds that helped avoid significant cuts to district funding for next school year are one-time funds, meaning that we will likely face significant budget challenges for the 2021-2022 school year (and possibly beyond). I encourage families to stay tuned to the budget conversations at the Jeffco Schools Board of Education level in the upcoming school year, as there will likely be a significant decrease in school funding available in 2021-2022.
Jeffco Schools Restart Plan
Jeffco Schools will continue to take feedback from parents and families through June 30, 2020 on the 2020-2021 Restart Plan. If you have not done so already, I encourage D’Evelyn families to provide feedback to the school district administration regarding the Restart Plan. The plan can be found here -- Jeffco Schools Draft Restart Plan. The survey is embedded in the report.
On July 8th, the school district will announce the official restart plan for the 2020-2021 school year. In the days after July 8th, D’Evelyn administration will be drafting communication about how the restart plan will impact our school. We will seek input and feedback from our community members so that we ensure we have the best plan possible in place for the start of school this coming fall.
Thank you for your ongoing support of D’Evelyn. Given all of the challenges we have faced in 2020, your support of your children and our school have been a great source of strength in our community. I hope that you all enjoy the remainder of your summer, and Happy Father’s Day to all of our D’Evelyn dads!
Written by: Josh Griffin, Principal
Congratulations to all D’Evelyn students, teachers, staff, and families on the completion of the 2019-2020 school year. I am proud of our community - the students that stepped up to the challenge of online learning, the teachers and staff that made the learning possible, and the families for the continued support and encouragement required for our students to succeed. It is my privilege to serve as principal of this great school.
I hope that you and your family enjoy a great summer break. Given the stress and challenges we have faced in our lives over the past few months, this break is well-deserved and well-timed. While limitations may impact our way of life into the summer, it is my most sincere hope that you all will be able to enjoy some time away from the traditional routines of school-year life during this summer break.
As you are likely aware, Jeffco Schools is exploring all options for the restart of school for the 2020-2021 school year. I encourage D’Evelyn families to provide feedback to the school district draft plan for school restart that was distributed on May 22nd. This is an important opportunity to share your input on the plan.
The D’Evelyn administration has also organized a second round of surveys for families and students. We value your feedback and will use it as we plan for the 2020-2021 school year. While we hope to return to a regular schedule of traditional in-person learning in the fall, we must prepare for all options given the unknown circumstances around our restart in the fall. We welcome feedback from parents/families and students:
Over the summer, we will provide families with updates via the School Messenger system as well as periodically in the Jaguar Tracks newsletter. We will likely have additional outreach to gather feedback once Jeffco Schools makes announcements regarding school restart plans in July.
Thank you for your continued support of your students and our school. I hope you have a safe, restful, and healthy summer!
Written by: Josh Griffin, Principal
Dear D’Evelyn Class of 2020 students & families:
As you have now reached the conclusion of your D’Evelyn career, please accept my most heartfelt congratulations on your upcoming graduation. While the conditions of our end-of-year are not what we planned for, it is important that we are able to set those conditions aside, and focus on celebrating your many great achievements to this point and the excitement you have as you move to embark on your next adventure. Whether your plans include work, military service, postsecondary education, a gap year, or anything else, I am so proud of you. I know that with the strong foundation you have developed at D’Evelyn, your futures are bright. Congratulations, Class of 2020!
We hope that you and your family will enjoy this D’Evelyn Class of 2020 Senior Tribute Video.
Additionally, in keeping with our annual tradition of gathering and sharing Senior Montages, please enjoy this link to the Senior Montages for the Class of 2020.
We appreciate the effort of all students, staff, parents, and families that supported the creation of the Senior Tribute Video and Senior Montages – thank you!
Thank you for all that you have dedicated to your D’Evelyn experience. Our school would not be the same without you! Best wishes on great celebrations ahead to commemorate this important time in your lives!
Written by: Josh Griffin, Principal
As we approach the final week of the 2019-2020 school year, please accept my heartfelt thank you to all students and families for your efforts to make this a successful year. As a community, we have faced extraordinary, unforeseen, and unprecedented challenges, and I am both proud of and grateful for the engagement, support, and commitment shown by D’Evelyn students and families.
Congratulations to the D’Evelyn Class of 2020! You made it! As a school community, we are so proud of you and all that you have accomplished. We hope that the D’Evelyn community will enjoy our Senior Tribute Video to the Class of 2020, as well as our digitized Senior Montages for the Class of 2020. We would certainly rather share these important rites of passage in person, but we hope that our students, families, faculty, and staff will enjoy these important tributes to the Class of 2020, a dedicated and resilient group of students.
I wish all D’Evelyn students the very best of luck with the conclusion of the school year. I hope that your final projects, exams, and coursework go well. I appreciate your hard work and dedication throughout the course of this semester.
After Thursday, May 21st, I hope that all D’Evelyn students and families will enjoy the time off for summer break. Certainly, the summer of 2020 will have a different look and feel from previous summers, but I hope that you all will find time for rest and relaxation. Whether you find pleasure in leisure reading, streaming shows & movies, or spending time (socially-distant) outdoors, summer is an important time to take a break from the regular routines of the academic year. Hopefully, over this summer, we will see additional relaxation of safety guidelines and protocols, and more of our customary activities will be available. I hope that you all have a great summer.
There have been several media reports this past week regarding Jeffco Schools plan for restarting school in 2020-2021. Jeffco families will have a chance to review and provide feedback on this plan on/after May 22nd. Once the draft plan is available, we encourage all D’Evelyn families to take the opportunity to provide feedback on this important process for our schools and community. After compiling feedback from administrators, teachers, and families, the district will share a final plan for the 2020-2021 school year later this summer.
The plan does outline the framework of a “hybrid” educational experience for students, where we safely blend in-person and remote learning for our students. The safety and wellbeing of all D’Evelyn community members is our highest priority; however, we also prioritize opportunities for face-to-face, in-person learning for all of our students.
With all that in mind, we understand that for some families, the return of students to in-person learning may present specific challenges that cannot be surmounted. Please know that the D’Evelyn faculty, staff, and administration, in accordance with district guidance, are committed to providing a safe, productive educational experience in 2020-2021 for all of our students. The D’Evelyn administration will be working with our faculty, staff, and community to ensure that the restart of school in 2020-2021 will be safe and successful.
Thank you for your continued support of our students and school. We have faced an array of challenges together as a community, and I am proud of how we have overcome those challenges to ensure that our students continue to have an opportunity to engage with our liberal arts curriculum. I hope that all members of the D’Evelyn community continue to be well and healthy!
Written by: Josh Griffin, Principal
To the D’Evelyn Class of 2020:
As we quickly approach the last day of school in your senior year, I congratulate you on your completion of high school and upcoming graduation. The Covid-19 pandemic has had devastating consequences in our community, and my heart goes out to all those impacted by this public health crisis.
As your principal, I am particularly saddened by the losses you all have experienced as a result of our school closure during the last semester of your senior year. I hope that, in spite of the great challenges we all face in our community, you will take this time in May and throughout the summer to reflect upon and celebrate your many great accomplishments to this point in your lives. I am excited for each of you, and know that you all are on the precipice of many more great things as you embark on the next chapter in your lives.
In spite of the challenges we currently face, I am confident that we will emerge from our national crisis stronger in the future. While we will be shaped going forward by the challenges associated with this pandemic, I know you are well-equipped to emerge as a stronger, better community and nation in the hopefully very near future. A great deal of my confidence in this American future is derived from my confidence in you all - the quality people that constitute the D’Evelyn Class of 2020.
Slightly less than six years ago, you started your D’Evelyn tenure as 7th grade students, ready to embark on a 6-year journey that would fundamentally change you as people, from adolescents to young adults. In that transition, you have grown immensely, as people, scholars, and citizens, as a result of your experiences both inside and outside the classroom. I have enjoyed observing your classes, attending your sporting events and concerts, watching your plays and musicals, attending your awards nights/recognition ceremonies, observing you shine in community service, and just seeing you each day around the halls and classrooms of D’Evelyn. You have grown into amazing young adults, and I have great confidence in the bright futures that lay before each of you.
I will always remember the highlights and pinnacle moments of your time at D’Evelyn, and I hope that you will cherish those accomplishments and memories for many years. But I hope you will always remember and hold dear the simple, individual moments along the way that truly forged you into the person you are today.
You have used hard work and determination to complete the rigorous D’Evelyn liberal arts program. You have used teamwork and collaboration to achieve many goals, both inside and outside the classroom. You have exhibited kindness and care for your peers, your teachers, your families, and our broader community. You have developed your minds and character each day, through the study of great literature, your inquiry into each academic subject, and your additional efforts in athletics and extracurricular activities.
Ultimately, your graduation from high school is a momentous occasion, as it allows you to celebrate the many great accomplishments in your lives to this point, but it also is an important transition point. Like any great book, you are closing one chapter of your life to move onto a new chapter. It is my steadfast belief that the individual effort and dedication you have shown daily in your high school lives will be the foundation for the happiness, joy, and success that you find in your future. It is my best hope for you that going forth, you will be able to build upon and lean into your D’Evelyn experiences, as the many lessons you’ve learned, both the easy way and the hard way, will shape the lens through which you encounter the world in the future.
I am confident that you will not proceed into your next chapter as wide-eyed strangers in a world of unknowns. Rather, you proceed as well-educated young men and women of character, both your minds and character molded and developed throughout your educational and personal experiences of the past 13 years. I am thrilled for you, and look forward to the many great experiences and opportunities that lay before you.
I am also grateful to each of you. You have enriched our school and the lives of your teachers and our staff throughout your D’Evelyn journey. I ask that you join me in sharing your gratitude with your D’Evelyn teachers and support staff as you prepare to exit our halls. And, please know, you are always welcome at D’Evelyn - please stay in touch and come back to visit us.
Finally, please take an opportunity in the coming days to thank and honor your parents and family members for the love, support, and guidance they have offered you in your lives. My experience in parenthood is less vast and varied than your parents, as I am just three years in. But I do know that parenting is the most profound, engaging, and ultimately rewarding opportunity of my life to date. Your presence here today, as soon-to-be graduates of the best high school in the state of Colorado is in many ways a result of the choices, decisions, and guidance offered by your parents and family members. Please honor them.
It is with great sadness that I cannot relay my well wishes and congratulations to you in person on May 16th. I am, however, happy that we will have a D’Evelyn Class of 2020 senior tribute video to share next week, we will have a parade in your honor on campus on May 16th, and we will hold your graduation (albeit slightly later than desired) on August 6th.
Congratulations, Class of 2020. I am proud of you. You have reached an honorable achievement, one that I am certain will prove worthy as you embark on your future adventures. I wish you all of the best going forward! Go Jags!
Written by: Josh Griffin, Principal
The D’Evelyn Founding Document states, “Teachers have the power to inspire interest in learning or to cause the student to react with indifference to the subject being taught.” This important quote of the Document emphasizes the importance of high quality teachers, dedicated to the learning and development of their students, with great knowledge of and passion for their subject. We are fortunate in our D’Evelyn faculty to have an amazing group of dedicated teachers serving our students each day.
The week of May 4 is National Teacher Appreciation Week. Customarily, parent groups, school administration and staff organize events throughout Teacher Appreciation Week to honor and recognize D’Evelyn teachers. With the limitations and challenges associated with social distancing, this year we are committed to virtual recognitions of our outstanding teachers.
I ask you and your family to consider joining us in an effort to recognize and thank teachers for their efforts this year, particularly in the face of the challenges associated with the seismic shift from in-person to remote learning. I am grateful to our teachers for their efforts to make this new learning model work, and am honored to count each of them as my D’Evelyn colleagues. As you are able, I request that D’Evelyn community members - staff, administration, students, parents, graduates, and family members - take a few minutes during the week of May 4th to contact members of the D’Evelyn faculty to thank them for their dedicated service. Let’s work together to ensure teachers are honored for their commitment to our children. For a full list of faculty/staff contact information, please visit this webpage.
Thank you for your ongoing support during the 2019-2020 school year. I am so thankful for the efforts of our students, teachers, staff, and families as we navigate this unique conclusion to the school year. I hope that you and your family are safe and healthy!
Below, please find several important updates regarding the planning for the new D’Evelyn 6th grade program, which will start in the 2020-2021 school year.
Josh Griffin, Principal