The Pony Press
March 3, 2023
From the Principal...
Families and Community,
I've shared this story with several of you, but it is most appropriate this time of year...
I have attended the UPES Variety Show multiple times as a parent long before I became principal. Although my kids weren't typically in it, we would still come support the school and their classmates. Last year, I sat and watched the first post-covid (is that a thing) Variety Show as both a parent and a future principal of this amazing building. I will never forget my excitement in that moment. I watched countless kids walk to the front of the stage with confidence as they sang, danced, wrestled, played instruments, put on comedy routines, and more! I remember one particular student who performed an "interpretive dance" to a song she liked at the time. I remember as she closed her eyes and danced without reservation. It was in that moment that it struck me just how truly different our little school is from other schools. We are a place where kids dance freely, sing loudly, and elevate their voices in whatever way possible. We are a place where kids have a voice.
As I watched the Variety Show again this year, from a different position (both in literal sense and also in my career), all those same feelings rushed back. We are so incredibly lucky to be here right now- In this place where our students are growing in so many ways, including in confidence! Huge shout out to Mr. Ferguson for organizing this event, Mrs. Kettler for adding the most incredible "Art Walk" to the variety show, and Mr. Batson for helping us livestream it so families could watch it from home.
Keep scrolling to see some of the exciting learning opportunities from this week!
Your partner in education,
Jackie Powell, Ute Pass Principal
Important Info for next week...
Monday, March 6th-
- Specials Day 2
- 4th Grade Hike to GMF
- Honor Choir Practice 3-3:45 pm
- Superintendent Input Session 3:15-4:15 at UPES gym
Tuesday, March 7th-
- Specials Day 3
- Pikes Peak Library at UPES to present research lessons to 1st-5th grade
Wednesday, March 8th- Late Start Today!
- Specials Day 1
- Clothing Drive tubs available after school
- Connect14 Cookie Monsterz and Creative Movement classes at UPES
Thursday, March 9th-
- Specials Day 2
- 6th grade to MSMS
- Ping Pong Connect14 Club at UPES
Friday, March 10th-
- Specials Day 3
- Furry Friends and Feel Good Friday Dismissal
Important Dates in March
1- Late Start
1- Variety Show 5-7 UPES gym
6- Superintendent Search Input Session @ UPES 3:15-4:15
7- Pikes Peak Library here to present research lessons to 1-5th graders
8- Late Start
9- 6th grade to Manitou Springs Middle School
13- Parent Connection Night at UPES
14- PAC Meeting 3 pm in the gym
15- Late Start
22- Late Start
22- Performing Arts Night (Honor Choir and 5th grade play)
24- MSMS Dance (6th grade) 4-6 pm
27-31 Spring Break
UPES Shirts Available!
Claire on KKTV News!
Little girl, big difference: 4th grader's idea helps reduce trash at Pikes Peak region-area elementary school
CASCADE, Colo. (KKTV) - A local little girl is making a big impact on the environment! Claire is a fourth grader at Ute Pass Elementary School in Cascade. Last fall, she took part in a letter-writing assignment with the rest of her class.
MSSD14 Superintendent Search
Superintendent Search Input Opportunities:
There are three scheduled in-person opportunities for students, staff, families, and community members to provide feedback in the superintendent search process which are outlined below.
3/6 - 3:15-4:15 UPES
3/7 - 3:45-4:45 MSMS/MSHS at the HS Media Center
3/9 - 3:15-4:15 MSES
There is also a survey which will provide folks with an opportunity to give feedback in the superintendent search process. The survey mirrors the opportunity people have if they choose to come to one of the in-person sessions as it asks the same questions that will be asked by the facilitator.
If you have any questions please refer to our district website which contains information as well.
Join our Amazing UPES Crew!
Dates: Every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday (volunteer for one day or more)
Contact Person: Ms. Powell- firstname.lastname@example.org
What will I do: Assist with math games, flash cards, and help grow our students' math skills!
Dates: Flexible- one to three times per week for 20-30 minutes
Contact Person: Mrs. Kettler- email@example.com
Times: Also flexible!
What will I do: Help Mrs. Kettler check-in books, replace books on the shelves, etc
Dates: PAC meets the 2nd Tuesday of each month at 3 pm in the gym
Contact Person: Amanda McCloskey- firstname.lastname@example.org
Times: 3 pm
What will I do: The PAC puts on several amazing events each year, and also helps support our staff through monthly appreciation surprises! Contact Amanda to see how you can help!
From Mrs. Kettler...
Art supplies are coming in! Thank you! Thank you! If you would like to donate art supplies, everything remaining on the is still needed. I appreciate your support in helping UPES students make so many wonderful creations.
Seed Slip Recipients
Watch us Grow!
2nd grader, Zoe, performs at the Variety Show on Wednesday!
Some of the incredible artwork at the Variety Show!
6th graders collaborate over challenging problems in math class!
Preschoolers practiced writing their letters in shaving cream this week!
6th graders had a virtual visit from an architect as they launch their tiny home projects!
Specials Schedule for March
UPES Morning Announcements
Our morning announcements are such a wonderful way to start the day! We have student-led announcements and singers every single day!
We want to share some of this Pony Pride from our "home" to yours! If you'd like to watch morning announcements, we are live-streaming them each day! Simply subscribe to the Ute Pass YouTube channel at this link- UPES YouTube
Information about Universal Preschool
Colorado Universal Preschool Program (UPK)
Last April, Gov. Jared Polis signed a bill that works towards “every child in the year before they are eligible for kindergarten is eligible for half-day (15 hours), state-funded, voluntary preschool beginning in the 2023-24 school year. Three-year-olds with qualifying factors are eligible for part-time (10 hours) preschool programming. Families of children in the year before they are eligible for kindergarten with certain qualifying factors, are eligible for an additional 15 hours stacked on top of the half-day programming, bringing those children to full-day programming.”
Manitou Springs Elementary School and Ute Pass Elementary School will continue to offer our exceptional preschool programs for both three-year-olds and students that are in the year before they are eligible for kindergarten. Information for families
Families are now able to submit an application through the state-wide Universal Preschool System for the 2023-24 school year. Here is the link to the application: https://upk.colorado.gov/
Families will still need to complete our preschool enrollment process as well as the UPK application. Here is the information for MSSD: Student Enrollment
Small Group Counseling, Classroom Counseling, and Individual Counseling is underway!
Please reach out to Stephanie Wilson if you have any changing needs where we can better support your student!
Her email is email@example.com. You may also call her at 719-685-2209 if you have any questions.
Ute Pass Elementary PTO/PAC
If you are unable to make it to meetings and would like to be a part of PAC please reach out.
Thanks so much,
- PAC Meeting 3-14-23, 3 pm in the gym
Landsharks is Back!
UTE PASS ELEMENTARY SPRING TRACK SERIES
We offer a non-competitive youth program to introduce running to young athletes in a safe and fun environment. The focus is on self-improvement, being an encouraging teammate, and making new friends. The Spring Track Series is a fun running program led by Sara Striegel and is open to students in kindergarten through 6th grade. Please remember to purchase a RED team race shirt if this is your first season running.
Practices are scheduled for Wednesdays/Fridays beginning April 12th with a celebration practice on May 10th. Practices consist of running games and track workouts with a strong focus on fun.
Races are held on Monday evenings at Woodland Park Middle School’s track at 5pm on April 24th, May 1st and May 8th. Runners run TWO of the following distances:
All runners will run the 50m sprint,
followed by the 400m OR 800m race
All runners will run the 100m sprint,
followed by choice of a 400m OR 800m race
All runners will run the 200m sprint,
followed by the 400m OR 1600m race
Registration opens February 1st and closes April 12th at 5pm OR until we reach CAPACITY
Runners must be registered prior to their first practice. Please register online at www.Landsharksrunningclub.com $65 registration fee through April 5th then an additional $10/runner fee applies until registration closes.
I look forward to working with your athletes! Please consider volunteering to help coach or work at our race site. If you have any questions or would like to volunteer.
Coach: Sara Striegel
MSSD14 is hiring fulltime positions and subs!
Breakfast and Lunch Information
A healthy breakfast and lunch is a key factor in growing a healthy mind and body! Ute Pass Elementary will offer breakfast to students for $1.45 and lunch for $2.95. See below for information on accessing menus.
You can find the new free and reduced application on the district website- https://www.mssd14.org/departments/food_service.
If you don’t qualify for free and reduced price meals, please make sure that there is money in your student’s account. You can add money online at this link- https://mssd14.org/cms/One.aspx?portalId=57448&pageId=13267314
Any questions or concerns, please call Paula Faucette, Director of Nutrition Services, at 719-685-2005 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Late Start Wednesdays
Thank you to families who submitted the form to sign up for Late Start Wednesdays. It helps tremendously with staffing and preparation. If you missed the opportunity to sign up, and are in need, please contact Danny Tramel at email@example.com for approval, as we are at our capacity.
Breakfast will be served until 8:00am, however, due to changes in the federal funding, we can no longer offer free breakfast.
Late Start Wednesdays for second semester:
- January 25
- February 1
- March 1, 8, 15, 22
- April 5, 26
- May 3, 10, 17
Some of these classes are held at UPES, but transportation is provided for students who wish to attend a session at Manitou Springs Elementary School. Please visit www.connect14.org to sign up today!