On Thursday, May 2nd, the Jeffco Schools Board of Education approved a proposal regarding the addition of a 6th grade program to D’Evelyn Junior/Senior High School. Beginning in the 2020-2021 school year, D’Evelyn will offer a 6th grade program. We are grateful to the Jeffco Schools Board of Education (BOE) for their support of this proposal and appreciate their decision to provide funding for the building addition that this change will require. On behalf of the D’Evelyn administration and Steering Committee, I am happy that we will have an opportunity to address the “double shift” matter facing many D’Evelyn families as a result of Jeffco Schools transition to a K-5 / 6-8 model.
This decision by the BOE was not easy or straightforward. The Dennison/D’Evelyn 6th Grade Task Force has been working on the question of 6th grade programming between the two schools since the Fall of 2017. The decision of what to do with 6th grade was challenging and, in many ways, brought the programs in the two schools into conflict. Ultimately, that reality contributed to the challenges and struggles that necessitated the nearly two-year process to a resolution.
As part of the BOE decision, Dennison Elementary will ultimately eliminate their 6th grade program. Between the 2020-2021 and 2022-2023 school years, both Dennison and D’Evelyn will offer 6th grade programs. However, beginning in the 2023-2024 school year, Dennison Elementary School will be a K-5 program, and D’Evelyn will be a 6-12 program.
I am sad for the Dennison community as I know that this course change will have a big impact. Dennison Elementary School has been a crown jewel elementary program in Jeffco Schools for decades. Dennison offers a rich academic program that supports the academic and personal development of their students with extraordinary success. D’Evelyn is fortunate each year to welcome Dennison graduates into our 7th grade program - more fortunate than I can adequately explain in writing.
I remain hopeful that this change will be an opportunity for Dennison and D’Evelyn teachers and administrators to build even stronger connections and additional productive collaboration going forward. The new D’Evelyn 6th grade program will be aligned with the Dennison Elementary 6th grade program, and I know that there are many, many things that we can learn from Dennison teachers, leaders, students, and families as we go forth with the design of our new program. Ultimately, between the two schools, our objectives are common. We seek to provide our students a rich, traditional educational experience that will prepare them for a great life. I am confident that this common objective will unify our school communities as we work together in the future.
Please accept my most sincere thank you to all members of the Dennison and D’Evelyn communities for their support and thoughtful consideration throughout the process of considering the 6th grade matter. I know that there are people who disagree with the decision made by the BOE, but I ask for your support going forward as we work to design the most outstanding 6th grade program possible at D’Evelyn.
Josh Griffin, Principal