“The answer is YES!”
That was the theme for District 50 employees this year as they gathered at Ranum Middle School for the traditional Welcome Back Rally that marks the beginning of a new school year.
The theme came from a Denver Post opinion piece earlier this year that asked the question, “Is Westminster 50 on to something?” The piece profiled the District’s success with implementation of its Competency Based System (CBS).
Superintendent Pamela Swanson asked a series of questions about the district’s approach to education:
Do we believe that all children deserve a quality education?
Do we believe that all children have great potential?
Do we believe that we have a moral obligation to help students learn to their full potential?
Do we believe that what we do is one of the most important jobs in the world?
Given our pattern of results, do we believe we should stay the course with CBS?
Do we believe we have the right people in the right place at the right time to make this happen for our kids?
To every question, Swanson said,” the answer is yes.”
The morning event also included remarks from Chief Education Officer, Oliver Grenham, Board of Education President, Ruben Pacheco and Rosie Jaramillo, President of the Westminster Education Association.
Grenham outlined the latest gains in student testing (see related story) and praised the staff for their commitment to educating all of the District’s children. He reminded everyone that there is still difficult work to be done and the District’s scores are not yet where they need to be.
Long time employees were also recognized for their years of service (see video below) and the morning ended on an emotional note with a video describing the impact teacher Clara Metz had on one of her students 60 years ago. The video can be seen below.