From The Director

Dear PCK Parents,

Thank you for tuning in to our virtual Back-to-School Nights this week. Our Kindie Back-to-School night is tonight, but all other grades wrapped up last night. We also sent out a general Back-to-School video featuring Mrs. Harth and me…sure to be a block-buster hit! In case you haven’t had a chance to view the video, here is a brief re-cap of what we discussed:

  1. We have some new staff this year that we wanted to introduce. Starting today, you will see their pictures and learn more about them in our Thursday news.
  2. If we haven’t said it enough already, let me reiterate:  WE ARE SO HAPPY TO BE BACK TO SCHOOL FIVE DAYS PER WEEK!
  3. This is bound to go down in the books as our most ‘unusual’ year yet, but we are committed to the following plans/priorities:

    Stay OPEN
    -We are maintaining all of our new health protocols. 

    -Everyone is asked to monitor their health symptoms carefully and wear a mask.

    -We are implementing a new THEO program to make it easier for students to stay home and monitor symptoms, without missing too much of their normal classroom instruction.

  1. Keep our Community Strong
  2. -All this ‘virtual’ can create unintended distance; we have to actively work to maintain our connections.

    -Creativity is needed in order to find/create new, safe volunteer opportunities. The PTA, Foundation, and PCK Board are all great places (still) to plug in and help our school community. The Safety Dad program is also continuing normally this year.

    -The political climate is challenging for all points of view. Please encourage students to be respectful of different views and perspectives. They often struggle when confronted with beliefs different from the ones they hear at home.

    -We encourage everyone to look for opportunities to practice random acts of kindness, encouragement, patience, and give the benefit of the doubt to others in our community. These are challenging times for everyone.

    Return to Normal Operations & Rigor

    Maintain Financial Stability
    -The 20-21 budget is tight, with a mid-year rescission expected.

  3. -Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF) have been helpful, but expire in December.

    -The PCK Board will revisit the question of refinancing our current debt and borrowing needed funds to expand the current classroom size of the rooms in our 5th/6th grade building.

    -All outside building rentals for the year have been suspended due to COVID considerations. This represents a loss of rental revenue for PCK.

    Close the Academic Gap
    -We need to address the overall COVID slide immediately. Keen focus will be on reading skills in the lower grades, where growth and mastery were interrupted by the school closure in the spring.

    -Writing also suffered, and most grades will ‘front-load’ writing skills this year.

    -Normal mastery in math skills is lagging. Teachers are ready to review and re-teach as necessary.

    Pilot a new math program
    -Go Math is transitioning into an updated program called IntoMath.  This new program aligns with new 2020 state standards for mathematics. 
    -A new math program is being piloted in grades K, 2, and 3 this year.

  4. Host a Moon Night in our Elementary Science Lab
    -This special science event is upcoming for our 1st grade students.  It will be combined with our normal Literacy Night on October 1st.

    Enhance our Teacher Training Program
    -PCK’s teacher training program is designed to bring in newly graduated teachers and train them up the PCK way. This allows us to place highly trained and capable teachers in our classrooms when new vacancies occur. We have expanded this one-year training program to two years, and added a valuable mentoring component. 

The 20-21 school year is well underway and we are 14 days (and counting) OPEN and healthy! Thanks to all PCK families for being so conscientious about monitoring symptoms and encouraging your children to wear their mask. We will keep our community safe by working together.  

I shared the famous Albert Einstein quote during our staff meeting yesterday, “In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity.” This year will be challenging for all of us, but not so challenging that we can’t overcome what lies ahead. Personally, I am excited to discover the new opportunities that will be revealed in the challenge. Bring it on!  #PCKproud


Teri Aplin

Dress Down Day Fundraiser Tomorrow

Tomorrow (Friday) we have a dress down fundraiser to support the Glenwood Springs Fire Department. Students may dress down in exchange for a donation of any amount.

Attention North Carpool Loop Drivers

Please remember that in the afternoon, our north carpool line goes around Centerpark Loop. When you arrive for pick-up, please proceed around the loop and join the end of your line. Do not go through the lot by the park, bypassing everyone who has been patiently waiting their turn. Thanks for your help!

Calling Candidates For Our Board Of Directors

We are now accepting letters of intent for two open Board of Directors positions. As you may remember, we postponed the spring election due to the stay-at-home order. Voting will be done online on September 15.

Please take a look at the Board Member Considerations to review what serving on the board entails. If you are interested in running, please submit a letter of intent and a brief bio including your prior experience, interests, any special expertise you would bring to the Board, and a head shot photo to the PCK Board. The deadline for submissions is September 8.

Thank you for your willingness to help guide PCK! 

Nurse News and Notes 

We appreciate our community doing its part and keeping students home with illness symptoms. Please let us know if your student is being tested for COVID-19 so we can take precautions if needed. If your student is home from school with illness symptoms or major or minor COVID-19 symptoms, please follow these guidelines for when to return to school following illness or Covid symptoms. If your student was sent home from school, we are asking that they stay home the following day to make sure they have a full 24 hours of no fever or symptoms before returning. Please see these general guidelines for other illness symptoms and returning to school. If you have any questions, please contact me at dsmith@ckcs.net. Please stay safe and practice good COVD-19 prevention measures this holiday weekend! ~Debbie Smith MS RN; PCK school nurse

Join Us In Welcoming Deputy Stever

PCK has a new School Resource Officer (SRO) this year. Deputy Paul Stever has been with the Douglas County Sheriff for 14 years, and previously spent nine years with Castle Rock Police. As a SRO, he monitors building security and ensures all safety protocols are followed. He also builds relationships with students and is available to help them should a need arise. If we ever need law enforcement support, we call on Deputy Stever. He comes to the school multiple times a day, and our students have enjoyed chatting with him at recess and in the lunch room. 

Welcome to PCK, Deputy Stever!

Meet Mrs. Mace

There is a new face in our health room this year. Shera Mace assists students who are feeling ill, while Miss Sara attends to injuries, medications, lost teeth, and other non-illness related needs. If your child feels ill at school, you will likely get a call from Mrs. Mace.

She is the mom of two PCK students, and is thrilled to be working at our school. Her favorite part of the job is getting to know our amazing kids and helping to comfort them when they are ill. 

Please join us in extending a warm welcome to Mrs. Mace.

Order Your 2020-21 Yearbook

image o the word yearbook surrounded by colorful brush strokesThis year, you did not pay for a yearbook as part of the school fees as you have done in the past. Our school photographer is handling all yearbook orders this year. To reserve a yearbook for your student(s), please click here. When asked for a passcode, use 1015343699083637. Order before September 30 to receive a 10% discount off the regular price of $19.65! Click here for details

Connecting With Character 

We are introducing a new curriculum in Character Coaching for our kindergarten through 4th grade students. Second Step is a highly regarded, research based program that includes both social-emotional learning and bullying prevention material. Students will have an in-depth lesson each week during Character Coaching, and will do daily reinforcement activities in class. The Home Links below give you a framework for talking with your student about the skills being learned. Please disregard the line asking for your signature. You do NOT need to sign and return these. Just enjoy doing them as a family to reinforce at home what your students are learning at school.

Kindergarten (for weeks starting 8/24 and 8/31)
First grade (for the week starting 8/31)
2nd grade (this week’s lesson does not include a Home Link)
3rd grade (this week’s lesson does not include a Home Link)
4th grade (for the week starting 8/31)

News For REO Families

Thank you for all of the positive feedback on REO this week! We are working hard to continuously improve this program for our students, and we appreciate your suggestions and encouragement. Your continued connection is valuable to us all, and we are grateful for your support.

We are using a new curriculum for in-person Character Coaching in grades K-4 this year. The Second Step program adds more social-emotional learning elements to our lessons, and also includes a bullying prevention unit. Second Step has made some video lessons available to remote learners that you can access here each week. While we use Second Step through fourth grade with our in-person learners, your older students are welcome to enjoy the videos as well.

Kindergarten and first grade – We feel feelings in our bodies

Second and third grade – Introducing emotion management

Fourth grade and up – Introducing emotion management

A Day Off Of School Is Fun At Core Care Club 

We have a staff in-service day on Friday, September 18 so students will not have school. Our Core Care Club will be open for those needing full-day care for their students. The program will run from 7:30am – 4:00pm and will cost $50 per student. Watch for more details coming soon! Please contact Vinnie Ortega if you have questions.

Go Mad With Virtual Mad Science

The popular Mad Science program is back with a new virtual program! Classes start September 7. Choose from NASA Journey to Space; Secret Agent Lab; Crazy ChemWorks; or Robots, Gears, and Circuits. Click here for more information, or go to colorado.madscience.org.

DOT Lets You Connect With Our Community

Our school directory, provided by Directory On Tap, is coming soon! If you do not want your contact information shared in the directory, please use this form to opt out by September 7.

PTA News

You’re Invited To The PTA Meeting
Our first PTA meeting of the school year is next week! Join us on Tuesday, September 8 at 6:30pm. It will be in-person under the awning outside the Sports Gym, and will also be hosted via this Zoom link.
Meeting ID: 559 203 5860 
Passcode: Grace2020

Those attending in person need to wear masks. Please bring a lawn chair to sit in so we can spread out and social distance as much as possible. Remember, attending a PTA meeting counts as an hour of volunteer time!

PCK Spirit Goods
Keep an eye out for the PTA Flash Sale!  We will be posting sale details on the PTA FB Page soon.

News From Our Littlest Learners

POP & PIP – what cute names! Are they animals? Are they characters? Nope! They are acronyms for our preschool learners. PIP students are our in-person learners. PIP stands for PCK In-Person Preschool. POP students are enrolled in PCK Online Preschool. Our first day of POP learning was Monday. Parents of Junior Kindergarteners receive lessons on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Parents of Preschoolers receive lessons on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Ms. Haines is our POP Coordinator and she, with the help of our teaching team, created a really fantastic program! For more information, email preschool@ckcs.net

Help For Hurricane Victims

If you would like to help Louisiana’s victims of hurricane Laura, there will be a donation drop-off at O’Brien Park next Tuesday, September 8 from 2:30 – 4:00. Some of our middle school students are helping with the collection, and are looking for items including bottled water, insect repellant, garbage bags, work gloves, first aid items, baby diapers, financial donations, and more. You can get more detail here.

Thank You, Safety Dads!

Thank you to Chris Wooten, Nick Smith, Lokesh Thakkalapatti, David Lewis, and Denis Branco for being this week’s Safety Dads. We truly appreciate your help in keeping our students safe and secure.

We are excited to continue our Safety Dad program this year. Get more information and sign up to volunteer here.

Thank You!

Thank you to the Rawson family for their donation of recess balls. Our students love the new balls, especially when playing soccer.

Thanks also to the Sadighian family for donating air purifiers for our health rooms and other areas in the building. We appreciate these tools to help keep our students and staff healthy in these sensitive spaces.

Thank you for thinking of us!

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