March 19, 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

For more information:
Lisa Pinto, npinto@jeffco.k12.co.us, Jeffco Public Schools, 303-982-6808

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Jefferson County Board of Education Rejects Alternate Plan for Jefferson Articulation Area
Original Jefferson Plan will move forward as planned

Golden, Colo. (March 19, 2015) – Tonight, the Jefferson County School Board withdrew a motion to consider an alternate plan in the Jefferson Articulation Area.  The board also voted unanimously to complete the original Jefferson Area Plan, which will result in the creation of a 7-12 Jefferson High School. Wheat Ridge 5-8 Middle School’s 7th and 8th grade students will move to Jefferson High School for the 2015-2016 school year, and the district will establish a Stevens Elementary K-6 School on the current Wheat Ridge 5-8 campus.

Over the past week, Jeffco Schools heard additional public comment about an alternate plan at three meetings in the Everitt, Maple Grove, and Manning communities leading up to this evening’s special board meeting.

“Our parents, students, and staff spoke overwhelmingly in favor of keeping the Maple Grove community together and proceeding with the original Jefferson Area Plan,” said Board Member John Newkirk, who rescinded his motion for the alternative option. “Ultimately, the goal for any plan is to provide students with greater choice in education, to be responsive to our communities’ needs, and to ensure every Jeffco Schools student has access to an excellent school.”

With the original plan moving forward, Sobesky is scheduled to move to Stevens Elementary campus to expand needed Special Education services in support of the growing demand for these services in Jeffco Schools.

The original Jefferson Area Plan was crafted by school principals from all six schools in the Jefferson Articulation Area, which includes Jefferson High School, Wheat Ridge 5-8, Edgewater, Lumberg, Molholm, and Stevens elementary schools.  The goal of the plan was to identify strategies to significantly improve student outcomes for their community and to use this framework as a structure to engage faculty and our communities.  The framework evolved into the final plan reviewed by the Board of Education following numerous staff and community meetings.

The framework focuses on strategies that can be implemented in a timely and cost-effective manner.  The practices contained in the framework are supported by research and experiences connected to the student learners of the Jefferson area.  The key tenants of the framework are focused on student and staff needs and they provide the systemic supports the area principals and staff know can make a significant impact on achievement and options for post-secondary endeavors. 

The framework addresses the social-emotional needs of highly-impacted students residing in the Jefferson area and provides structures to establish an environment that supports high expectations for all students to achieve at a high level.

A staff advisory committee is working to develop the final plan and metrics for evaluation of the program.  The committee consists of teachers, classified staff, and administrators from each school in the Jefferson Articulation Area.

The alternate plan would have kept Stevens Elementary in the school’s current building, moved Everitt Middle School to the Wheat Ridge 5-8 building, moved Manning Option School to the Everitt Middle School building, and expanded Maple Grove Elementary by splitting the program into two campuses using the current Maple Grove campus for K-3 and the current Manning Option School campus for 4-6 programming. 

About Jeffco Public Schools

Jeffco Public Schools has been providing educational excellence for more than 60 years. Approximately nine percent of all the K-12 students in Colorado attend a Jeffco School. Our mission is to provide a quality education that prepares all children for a successful future. The district has 155 schools on 168 campuses. Additional information about Jeffco Public Schools can be found at JeffcoPublicSchools.org.

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