We are excited to welcome new D’Evelyn students in the Classes of 2024, 2025, 2026, and 2027 in the next few weeks in our New Student Welcome Nights. I am proud of the interest our school continues to receive, and particularly happy with the response to our new 6th program beginning in the 2020-2021 school year.
Thursday, February 27th, 6 pm, D’Evelyn Auditorium - New Student Welcome Night for incoming 6th grade students, the D’Evelyn Class of 2027: We are thrilled to welcome the students and parents of the inaugural 6th grade class in D’Evelyn history. During this meeting, we will:
Thursday, March 5th, 6 pm, D’Evelyn Auditorium - New Student Welcome Night for incoming 7th, 8th, and 9th grade students, the D’Evelyn Classes of 2024, 2025, and 2026. During this meeting, we will:
Prior to the start of the March 5th meeting, students and families can visit the financial office to purchase summer reading books for 7th, 8th, and 9th grade, and visit with several representatives from our athletic department regarding 7th and 8th grade athletic programs.
We ask all attendees to do the following prior to / during your Welcome Night:
Please join me in welcoming our new students and their families into our community. We are excited to start the process of preparing for the 2020-2021 school year.
On Monday, February 10, 2020, several members of the Jeffco Schools administration joined the Steering Committee meeting to discuss the process of implementation of CU-06 at D’Evelyn. The meeting was in response to the letter sent to the Steering Committee several weeks earlier by Jeffco Schools Chief of Schools/Deputy Superintendent Kristopher Schuh, which stated that in order for D’Evelyn to implement honors coursework, the district course review process must be followed.
During the meeting, we discussed the process and methods used to evaluate the level of academic courses in Jeffco Schools. At the conclusion of the meeting, I was charged with several tasks, all aligned with the objective of adapting the Jeffco Course Honors Review Process to meet the needs as outlined in D’Evelyn policy CU-06. I highlight the following key points of the process and agreements reached during the meeting on February 10, 2020:
The Task Force has contacted 31 colleges/universities to gather their feedback on the impact of these two elements of the policy. The colleges and universities represent a broad sampling of the nation’s colleges - public, private, in-state, out-of-state, highly selective, moderately selective, and non-selective. Additionally, they are researching the practices of other areas high school as to their choices of offering Honors and AP classes side-by-side. I look forward to reviewing the findings of the Task Force along with the D’Evelyn Steering Committee and our community members.
I am grateful for both the efforts of the D’Evelyn CU-06 Task Force and the support of Jeffco Schools personnel in organizing and executing this process. An objective review of D’Evelyn coursework as compared to grade-level standards and expectations is an important step in validating each course prior to implementation, and I am optimistic that this process will lead our school community to a more broadly supported conclusion.
I understand that this is an important issue in our school community. There are students, parents, teachers, staff, and community members that have a sincere, heartfelt, and vested interest in the outcome of this policy. As principal, I accept the important responsibility of leading our school through a thoughtful, collaborative process to evaluate our coursework relative to the Colorado Academic Standards, and ultimately support appropriate labeling and weighting for our classes.
I am aware that the time and delay in implementation of this policy has caused frustration among some in our community. I understand your frustration yet ask for your support as we work together in our community to determine the level of our coursework using a common, systematic process of evaluation. It is important that we work together - students, teachers, parents, staff, and community members - to ensure that we are all working together to serve the very best interests of all D’Evelyn students, now and into the future.
I am grateful for your support and understanding as we work to find a solution to the implementation of CU-06 in a manner that honors our school philosophy, supports all D’Evelyn students, and serves D’Evelyn students for years to come. I am committed to leading our school to a solid conclusion in this process that honors and reflects the interests of D’Evelyn students, teachers, families, and community members.
While we will offer reminders of these upcoming meetings, it is expected that CU-06 will be discussed in the February 24th and March 9th Steering Committee meetings, as we look to establish a timeline and plan for the Course Review Process that we can share with our community. For those interested in following developments and learning more about this topic, I encourage you to attend those meetings.
I hope that you enjoyed your Presidents’ Day weekend, and that it was a great time for rest, relaxation, and recharging during the busy month of February.
The 2019-2020 school year standardized testing period will begin in earnest after the conclusion of Spring Break. Since the introduction of new state assessment methodologies several years ago, the D’Evelyn curriculum, as outlined by the Founding Document, has been steady and has not changed as a result of shifts in national, state, or local guidelines for curriculum or assessment.
As a school community, we believe that the value of the liberal arts education offered at D’Evelyn, and specifically outlined in the D’Evelyn Founding Document, has a multitude of benefits, primary among them that D’Evelyn graduates will be knowledgeable, thoughtful, and engaged community members leading happy and fulfilled lives after high school due to their understanding of and comfort with the great ideas of our world. As a result, we do not, and will not, adjust our curricular expectations to coordinate with curricular directives from outside of the school.
Nonetheless, we believe that D’Evelyn students will find success on the various standardized tests that are presented to them over their six-year tenure in the school, especially when students submit their best effort on those tests. Additionally, the CMAS, PSAT, and SAT performances by D’Evelyn students will ultimately contribute to school wide measurement of performance through the Colorado School Performance Framework. Additionally, the SAT is a contributing factor for college admissions for individual students. The PSAT gives important opportunities for our 9th and 10th grade students to practice for the SAT their junior year.
As a result, it is the sincere hope of the D’Evelyn faculty, staff, and administration that students will engage in their upcoming testing with the wholehearted effort that we have come to know and respect of our student community. We appreciate the support of parents in encouraging their student(s) to perform their best on these tests.
This year, we are taking a unique approach to the standardized testing schedule that we believe will make improve both the administration of the testing for all students and minimize the impact to students that are not testing on a given day. Please read and review the following standardized testing schedule as it will impact students in all grades.
Please note, on Friday April 3rd and April 17th there will be no school for high school students.
Students in grades 7th-10th grade will also complete NWEA MAP testing in May. While the bell schedule will be modified on MAP testing days, there will be no impact to the overall school schedule.
The D’Evelyn faculty, staff, and administration are still ironing out the details of the standardized testing schedule, including the availability of bus and food services on the testing days with unique schedules. We will update the community as these decisions are made.
If you have questions regarding standardized testing, please contact our School Assessment Coordinator, Dan Wille, at Daniel.Wille@jeffco.k12.co.us or 303-982-2613. As we get into the swing of standardized testing, thank you for your commitment to supporting and encouraging your child(ren) to give their best effort on these assessments.
This week, D’Evelyn students in grades 7 - 11 participated in a Course Selection presentation by D’Evelyn counselors during their English classes. You can review the presentation slides here (please consider the presentation for the grade your student will be in during the 2020-2021 school year). The deadline for submission of schedule requests for the next year is February 12th. Students must submit their schedule in two forms:
As students and families prepare to determine course selections, I offer the following recommendations to support thoughtful decision-making in the process.
I encourage students to choose classes in their areas of interest
Given the limited opportunities for electives within the D’Evelyn program, it is particularly important for all students to pursue their passions and interests in available elective courses. Whether the elective falls in one of the traditional academic areas, foreign language, or art, music, PE, or computers, please encourage your student to pursue their interests with their electives. This is particularly important when selecting AP classes, as students tend to find more success and satisfaction in advanced level courses that align with their interests. For those students that have begun college and career planning, it is also wise to align their courses with those goals.
I encourage students to seek balance
The D’Evelyn Program was designed to be rigorous and challenge students with high expectations for all students. This design was established prior to the inclusion of Advanced Placement (AP) courses in the D’Evelyn curriculum. AP coursework has many benefits for students, including the opportunity to enhance their college resume and earn college credit. However, it is important for students to request these advanced courses thoughtfully. The workload in an AP course is notably higher than in D’Evelyn standard courses, and the expectations and intensity of the AP courses are generally heightened. Students should seek to find balance in their academic course load in a manner that allows them to thrive in all areas of their lives for the next school year.
I encourage students to partner with their counselors for additional support in the selection process
The D’Evelyn counseling team is knowledgeable about the courses offered at D’Evelyn. They offered students thoughtful, informative presentations in a whole group setting this week, but are also available to meet with students to brainstorm individually. Students that would like to discuss their course selection process can set up an appointment with their counselor to gain additional insight and support in the process.
I encourage all D’Evelyn families to work with their child(ren) to ensure a thoughtful, logical course request process. While elective offerings and elective sections are limited due to the nature and structure of the D’Evelyn program, the individual choices for those elective classes carry great significance. On a basic level, it is essential that D’Evelyn students consider the junior high and senior high course requirements needed for either continuation or graduation. However, I encourage all students in collaboration with their families to thoughtfully consider additional elements throughout the course selection process.
An important resource during the course selection process is the 2020-2021 D’Evelyn Junior/Senior High School Course Planning Guide. This document provides course overviews, prerequisites, course numbers, and additional relevant course-dependent information that should support students in their selection of courses for next school year.
The D’Evelyn academic program is well-designed to prepare students for a successful life. With thoughtful consideration given to course selection, students have the ability to adjust their academic experience to better suit their personal needs, interests, and passions. An additional consideration - as a small school, we generally do not have a lot of wiggle room in the schedule once it is built. From a school-level perspective, it is important that students submit a schedule request with thoughtful choices for next year as we prepare to build the master schedule. I hope that families will have an opportunity to work with their children in the process of developing a good plan for course selection for the 2020-2021 school year.
Josh Griffin, Principal