Parent Post- Happy Summer!

Posted June 2, 2016

Welcome to our summer information post, your quick guide to current important topics taking place here at Cory to get you ready to kick off your summer!


Principal’s Corner

As we close out the 2015/16 School Year, I wanted to be sure to highlight the accomplishments we have had this year, as well as take a sneak peek into the 2016/17 School Year.  Highlights from this year include:

  • Nominated for the National Blue Ribbon Award.  This award is given to schools for their overall academic excellence as well as their ability to close the achievement gap.    Click NATIONAL BLUE RIBBON AWARD for more information on this nomination.  We will find out in September if we are selected to receive this prestigious award!
  • Curriculum Refinements and Staffing Enhancements (Teacher Leadership & Collaboration Model)- We were able to refine our curriculum to better meet our students needs, as well as enhance our Teacher Leadership Model to include having teachers give feedback and coaching to their fellow peers.  Click CURRICULUM REFINEMENTS for details on these exciting topics!
  • Streamlined our Marketing and Communication.  Throughout the year we were able to continue our communication through our Parent Post, website and Facebook page.  We released our Mobile APP for any last minute updates that you may need (and it also includes our calendar).   We want to make sure our parents and community have the most up to date information and receive timely communications.  We are also continuing to strengthen our internal communications and continued with our Leadership Huddles which bring together our School Leadership Team Chair, Principal, PTA President and CSC Co-Chairs on a monthly basis.  In these monthly huddles we update and discuss topics relevant to these three school advisory bodies to ensure transparent communication, goal setting and problem-solving.
  • Continuing to strengthen Paraprofessional Support Roles– The School Leadership Team (SLT) and Para Team will continue the conversation this summer to discuss how to best use our talented para team to support our students. Highlights of additional continued discussions include:
    • Para hours- These will remain the same throughout our school, thanks to all of YOU for your generous giving!
    • Teacher Needs- Discussing teachers needs across grades and ensuring that we allocate para hours equitably depending on student need.
    • Para Responsibilities- Discussion will  include having a more defined schedule and break down of responsibilities to allow paras will continue to work with small groups of students in the classroom along with a variety of other responsibilities to assist the teachers.

2016/17 Cory Team!  Be sure to click  the “Cory Team” tab to learn all about our wonderful team members!

1st Grade Team: Alex Keldin, Brendan Doyle and Kara Fuchs

2ndGrade Team: Lauren Vertrees, Annie Guerrero and Kim Nagel

3rd Grade Team:  Diana Golden, Patty Kozma, Sarah Clark and Sarah Weaver

4th/5th Grade Team:

  • Math and Science- MaKenna Moreland, Julie Keppler and Katie McOwen
  • Literacy and Social Studies: Rainy LaVenture, Caleb Melamed, Sara Laughlin and Andy Osborn

Para Team: Betsy Sedig, Jana Roush, Alison O’Connell, Cecilia Goergen, Marla Fine, Jane Hall, Lisa Schultz, Hyun-Jung Behmer and Bliss Barela.

Support Staff: Angela Alexander (Visual Arts), Amy Polete (Music), Brent Conklin (PE) and Dawn Miller (Librarian/Tech Teacher). Kara Butte (ESL), Julie Williamson (Special Education), Betsy Sturges (Intervention) and Amy Menezes (School Psychologist).

Class Placement Information: Your child’s class placement will be sent out today (Friday, June 3) at 4PM. If you are NEW to Cory (1st Grade SCKEE attendees excluded), please note that this placement is temporary and could be changed after the first 4-6 weeks of school, as we want to ensure that your child’s needs are met. This allows us to get to know your child and see if their placement is appropriate for their social and academic needs. Lastly, those that are current students at Cory (including 1st Grade SCKEE students), thank you for following our Change of Classroom Placement Policy for any classroom change requests. This is located in our Family Handbook.

Report Cards/ Parent Portal Reminder:  Please remember that Report Cards are now on Parent Portal. You will also need a Parent Portal account to complete on-line verification for the 2016/17 school year.  Click on Parent Portal to sign in or create your account (this link is also on the bottom of our home page).  If you are having difficulty, you will need to contact the hotline which is on the site.

Don’t Stop the Learning: The Summer Learning Guide for Parents

Did you know that if students stop learning during the summer, they can lose more than two months of what they learned during the school year? It’s called summer learning loss and it can happen to students at all grade levels. DPS has provided a Summer Learning Guide to help stop summer learning loss. It’s full of great ideas that parents can use to reinforce learning in reading, writing, science and math for students at all grade levels. Click here for this helpful guide.
Also, be sure to check out the Family and Community Engagement website  for more summer learning resources, like reading suggestions and summer learning programs. And remember, healthy kids make better learners, so check out our resources for the Whole Child by taking advantage of free access to city recreation centers and swimming pools for students through the MY Denver Card program.

Looking forward to a great year ahead…enjoy your summer!

Jennifer Harris, Proud Principal of the Cory Cougars


August 2016 Events*

*Keep an eye on the Google Calendar on the right for more details!

Monday, July 18th- On-line Verification Opens- Current Cory Families- On-line Verifications are Due (there will not be registration this year, as everything will be on-line.   Click HERE for more information!)

Wednesday, August 10th- Office opens for new registrations and school business. Office hours: 7:30-4:00. Special Note:  The office will be CLOSED on Monday, August 15th for training.

Monday, August 15th- On-Line Verification Closes

Friday, August 19th,  4:00-5:30- Meet the Teacher and Popsicles with the Principal (click HERE for School Supply List)

Monday, August 22nd- First Day of School!


Parent Teacher Association (PTA)

As we dive into our new school year, it is our pleasure to introduce to you our new PTA Officers for the 2016/17 School Year. Please welcome them to our team!

  • Deborah Freeman, PTA President
  • Haven Smith, Co-Vice-President; Co-Vice President
  • Deanne Deeg, Secretary
  •  OPEN- Treasurer

The PTA is a type of forum where parents and teachers come together to discuss ways to promote quality education, strive to expand the arts, encourage community involvement, and work for a healthy environment and safe neighborhood. We value input from the community and we need your involvement to be successful meeting our goals.

With your help, the PTA was able to provide funds for salaries that allowed paraprofessionals to keep their same amount of hours in the classrooms as well. The paraprofessionals are instrumental in the classrooms to help work with small reading and math groups as well as supporting each of the teachers in many ways. The PTA has also been able to purchase the beautiful Mac computer lab that is located on the second floor, laptops and charging carts, iPads and Promethean Boards. We couldn’t have done any of this without your support.

Throughout the school year, you will receive emails and flyers about ways to get involved and information regarding our two annual fundraisers. We need to ask for volunteers to be able to provide exciting events such as the fall carnival and the spring dance. We need to ask for donations to continue to provide the level of support and enrichment as we have provided in previous years. You may give of your time and/or financial support throughout the year in many ways and by getting involved with the PTA, you will meet other great parents who are dedicated to the success of our great school.

We look forward to partnering with you to achieve our goals. We are always open to suggestions and hope you will complete a membership form to join the Cory PTA. Everyone is open to attend PTA meetings, but if you join the PTA, you can be more involved with the planning of events and how money raised will be used to directly benefit the school and the students. More information will be available at Meet the Teacher and Popsicles with the Principal prior to school start and the PTA Welcome Coffee in the cafeteria at 8:45am on the morning of the first day of school. We hope to see you there. Thank you for your support!

Cory PTA


Collaborative School Committee (CSC)

The Cory Collaborative School Committee (CSC) provides guidance, evaluation and recommendations to the Principal and/or the Instructional Superintendent regarding priorities for the school’s budget, monitoring of the school’s Unified Improvement Plan and progress toward associated goals, staffing allocations, school program design, school culture and other related topics. We are like the school’s board of directors. The CSC’s members include elected parent representatives, community members, teachers, staff members and the principal.

Monthly CSC meetings are public, open meetings held on the first Thursday of each month (or other publicized date), and parents are encouraged to attend! The CSC also develops and holds additional forums for parent engagement throughout the school year designed to offer opportunities for the diversity of the school’s community population to engage with school leadership. In all of its efforts, the CSC’s mission is to enhance student achievement and school climate by engaging the school community in supporting school and district goals.

Highlights from this year at the CSC include:

  • Gathering input during our Fall Forum to assist our school with programming to continue to draw parents into the school.
  • Partnering with PTA to kick off the partnership with Community Resources, an organization which has organized our Science Night and Creativity Night, as well as host our Science Fair!
  • Discussing ways to help our school address changes in curriculum models, testing and other policy changes that have and will come from the school district and the state of Colorado.
  • Advising on staffing and budgeting for the coming year, including maintaining our full time specials and maintaining paraprofessional hours at or above current levels, and more!
  • Creating opportunities for the community to encourage the teachers through “Stuff the Lounge” and various breakfasts throughout the year (and it was soooo yummy and appreciated, thank you!).

More information about the CSC and minutes from our meetings are available on the CSC tab of Cory’s website by clicking HERE.

One of our key goals for the 2016/2017 school year is to greatly increase our community engagement – we can only consider your feedback and opinions if you share them!  Our CSC meeting calendar will be posted in August. We hope to see you in the coming year!

2016/17 CSC Members- The CSC is made up of the principal, parents, teachers, support staff and community members. All members of the CSC are elected to two-year terms. 2016/2017 CSC members are as follows:

  • Jennifer Harris (Principal)
  • Sue Weisenburger (Parent Representative)
  • Laura Quartarone (Parent Representative)
  • Jen Daily (Parent Representative)
  • Adam Brown (Parent Representative)
  • Bill Esbenshade (Parent Representative)
  • Brendan Doyle (1st Grade Teacher)
  • Kim Nagel (2nd Grade Teacher)
  • Patty Kozma (3rd GradeTeacher)
  • Rainy LaVenture (4th/5th Teacher)
  • Dawn Miller (Specials Teacher)
  • Jane Hall (Paraprofessional)
  • David Fowler (Community Member)