Sand Creek Zone Newsletter

January 2022

From the Desk of Sean Dorsey, Sand Creek Zone Leader

Happy New Year,

I trust you had a wonderful break filled with time spent with family and friends. It is hard to believe it 2022. I am not sure where the time goes. Thank you so much for guiding our learners through a successful first semester...a semester certainly filled with challenges and opportunities.

In the Sand Creek Zone, we annually survey staff, families, and students to ascertain their level of satisfaction with our learning and working environment. We were lucky to have a notable response on each of our surveys. Currently, school leaders are sharing the results with staff. We identify strengths, opportunities for growth, and develop action plans to address challenges brought forth by stakeholders. Below is a sample of strengths and opportunities for improvement based on our 21-22 surveys. They are based on a 5 point scale (5 is strongly agree, 4 is agree, 3 is neutral , 2 is disagree, 1 is strongly disagree)


  • My principal/supervisor provides me with good processes and resources to do my
job (4.40)
  • If given a choice, I would recommend that a parent select this school for his or
her child (4.39)
  • My child’s learning is a high priority at this school (4.34)
  • My family is treated with respect at this school (4.36)

Opportunities for Improvement:
  • The Zone Leader is an effective leader (3.80)
  • I receive positive phone calls, emails, or notes about my child from the school (4.04)
  • The zone leader uses a variety of methods to promote effective communication
throughout the zone (4.02)

272 staff members and almost 500 parents/guardians took our survey. Hence, a decent sample size. Overall, the results are strong. However, as always, there is work to do. Our schools will share their action plans with staff, as well as the community. Be on the lookout for those plans prior to spring break.

Have a great start to 2022.


Class of 2020 Ford Back at the Creek

Ezekiel Ford is serving his country and students at Sand Creek High School. As a 2020 graduate of Creek Nation, Ford completed his educational journey with plans for a military career. It didn’t take long for life to take him full-circle and back to the school he loves. This time Ford would fill a role on the school’s staff as a paraeducator.

Read full story:

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Sand Creek Zone Pillar Award

The Pillar Award is awarded to staff, students and community members that have made an impact in one of the four pillars of our zone plan: Student Success, Service, People and Innovation & Growth. Our most recent award winners were:

  • Gina Sheets (RES): for being instrumental in training student teachers with high expectations in teaching, practice, planning, preparation and professionalism and for the time and care put into our newly hired staff, through her ongoing support, and maximizing retention at Remington Elementary | PEOPLE
  • Teri Armes (SRES): for her commitment to moving learning beyond the classroom, for engaging parents in their child's education and giving them the tools to do so | STUDENT SUCCESS

Each pillar winner is presented with a certificate and Dinner for 2 from Texas Roadhouse.

We Celebrate Our Veterans

Schools in the Sand Creek Zone celebrated their community of veterans on November 11th.

  • Horizon held a virtual assembly for their school and families. Band, Orchestra and Choir all had performances during the event as well as a slide show of active duty and veterans for the staff and families of HMS. Check out the full assembly here:
  • Remington had a parade of veterans from their community through the hallways while students waved flags and held up artwork they made to honor those that have served. They also had coffee and donuts for students and parents to participate in together.
  • Sand Creek had an outdoor assembly to honor 2 fallen alumni and current staff veterans, hosted by the SCHS AFJROTC.
  • Springs Ranch had an outdoor parade around the school and a performance from 5th grade students of the Armed Forces Medley.
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EES Kindergarten Has Significant Growth

The kindergarten team at Evans has done a phenomenal job this year pushing their kindergarteners to amazing growth during first semester.
  • At Beginning of Year Benchmark in August, 41% of their kindergarteners were well below grade level with their literacy skills.
  • By Middle of Year Benchmark in December, 66% of their kindergarteners were WELL ABOVE grade level!

Through purposeful and explicit instruction, maximizing every instructional moment, and engaging families for extra support and reinforcement, Evans kindergarten teachers have achieved fantastic results and have set our kindergarteners on the path to academic success.


Horizon Celebrates Academic Success

Each quarter, Horizon Middle School recognizes students that have a B average or higher, through their Renaissance program. Students earn celebrations, perks and HMS gear for success in academics. This past quarter, Renaissance students had cotton candy delivered to them during class and a hot chocolate celebration at the end of last semester outside!

Congratulations to their newest qualifiers; almost 60% of the student body will be celebrated this quarter for their dedication to academic success!

Remington Hosts Inclusive Week

At the beginning of December, Remington Elementary hosted an Inclusive School Week to celebrate the progress that schools have made in providing a supportive and quality education to an increasingly diverse student population, including students who are marginalized due to disability, gender, socio-economic status, cultural heritage, language preference, and other factors. The Week also provides an important opportunity for educators, students and parents to discuss what else needs to be done in order to ensure that their schools continue to improve their ability to successfully educate all children. Thank you to Sadie Russell, RES' Title 1 Family Engagement Liaison, for putting this experience together!

Day 1: Learning Differences. They took a look into the minds of children with ADHD and Autism.

Day 2: Food Allergies. They looked into the lives of those with Peanut Allergies and Celiac Disease. Students thought about their family and friends that might have allergies.

Day 3: Bullying. They watched a couple of videos about bullying, what it could look like and how we could try to prevent it. They also spent a little time on role playing different scenarios and looked at it from both sides.

Day 4: Cultural Differences. Students were able to experience the culture and food from Cuba, Germany, Serbia, Egypt, Italy, Turkey, France, Zanzibar, Portugal and Iraq without leaving Remington.

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Bobcats Perform The Emperor's New Clothes

Students at Springs Ranch Elementary School recently participated in the play, “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” with the help of the Missoula Children’s Theatre. MCT has also traveled to Remington, utilizing the same play. Missoula typically visits the Sand Creek Zone schools once a year to allow students to get the feel for a real production. Students have to audition, rehearse and perform multiple shows. Way to go SRES participants!
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Third Grade Wildcat Carolers Bring Cheer to Classrooms

About 15 EES third-graders followed Music Teacher Joshua Winans as he led his class down the halls and into classrooms, where the group performed classic winter carols and holiday tunes. The day of caroling gave the students a chance to share their musical gifts as an alternative to a traditional end-of-semester performance in front of a large audience. "We’re having to be creative with coming up with ideas on how to get these kids singing,” Mr. Winans said. "This was a wonderful time. They sang really well.”

"It fills my heart with joy,” said Belinda Reid, EES administrative assistant. "Just to see the smiles on their faces and everything gives me great joy.” Each stop included a single song and a short break from the daily routine. "I think it’s a good morale booster and something they can benefit from... And it’s just fun,” said Jennifer Kayim, EES fifth-grade teacher. “I love how the whole school loved it,” Mr. Winans said. "I think it’s going to have to become a yearly thing now."

SCHS CyberPatriot Students Compete at the State Level

The Sand Creek High School CyberPatriot Teams competed in the Colorado State Gold Tier round last month! They battled for five solid hours and the team of Jayson Clark, Jeffrey Nerwinski, Aiden Heckard, and Brandon Yasav-Roberts finished with 169 points on the board. Enough to finish 11th in the country and 1st in the State in our tier!

Also competing was the team of Kemper Daron, Katrina Hoffman, and Naima Phillips. They also did well, scoring 150 points in the Gold Tier. Putting them at 65th in the country and 3rd in the state! Extra notable because it's the first year competing for Katrina and Naima.

They will compete in the Semi-Finals this month! Congratulations and good luck!


Cool Science at SRES

Springs Ranch Elementary welcomed Cool Science back on campus on November 9th for all grade levels. Marc Straub, Executive Director of Cool Science, hosted large groups of students to show different states of water. Students were excited to watch the water vapor blast into the air, the frozen beads of water slither across the ground, and flowers shatter from being so cold. Teachers were given extra time to work together in teams while students witnessed some Cool Science!

Online Courses for Parents

We have partnered with EVERFI to bring families some online courses to do with your child! Courses include (with appropriate grade levels):

  • Pathways: How to finance higher education (9-12)
  • Vaping: The dangers around e-cigarettes and how to quit (6-12)
  • Money Moves: Financial education to promote financial well-being (9-12)
  • K12 Prescription Drug Safety: Make safe and healthy decisions about opioids (8-12)
  • Healthy Relationships: Learn more about character education and social and emotional learning (7-9)

To register for these courses, go to Choose "student" and use the class code: a02cbe8a These courses will be available from now through the end of the school year. We wanted to incorporate some virtual options for Family Education that are available when you are!

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Register for the Restorative Practices Parent Academy NOW!

Did you miss our first session of Building Healthy Relationships with your Kids? Be sure to register for our next session happening on January 18th at 6pm at Sand Creek High School! Snacks and babysitting will be provided. Register here:

Remington Creates STEM Lab for Students

Brett Coddington has been working for the past few years on creating a creative place to support his larger than life Project Lead the Way course for all Remington Elementary students. This past summer, Mr. Coddington was able to secure funds to transform the library into a fully equipped STEM lab. During PLTW, students cover topics like the engineering design process, computer programming, simple and compound machines, and robotics. In addition to the PLTW curriculum, Brett has added access to zSpace laptops, GarageBand, and exclusive access to a full sized planetarium. Thank you to Mr. Coddington and those that supported and executed this project!

Feedback for Your Principal & Zone Leader

We would like to invite all families to give feedback to your principal and zone leader on our survey results! We are looking for how to maintain our high scores and how to improve our low scores. We will host this meeting on Monday, January 31st at 5:30pm at Remington Elementary. Dinner will be provided. We hope you will join us to help us on our journey of continuous improvement in the Sand Creek Zone!.


SCHS Holds Harvest of Love Food Drive

The National Honors Society hosted classroom competitions in order to raise money and collect food donations for the Harvest of Love food drive. SCHS was able to raise over $2000 through their efforts to support Care and Share.

Congratulations NHS and thank you to our community for the support!

Community Partners Honored at Fantastic 49

The holiday season provided a perfect time for the Sand Creek Zone and board members to recognize the kindness and giving spirit of our community partners during Fantastic 49 festivities, Dec. 16. We would like to thank our community partners for helping to meet the basic needs of our families and for continuing to support the Sand Creek Zone! Read the full story here.
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Horizon Raises Money for Care & Share

HMS students and staff held a food drive for the Harvest of Love campaign in conjunction with Care & Share. The school donated 845 lbs of food and over $800 in cash for the Harvest of Love food drive for Care & Share. Horizon had one of the biggest cash donations from any middle school in the area!

Way to go, Panthers!

Evans Partners with Cimaron Hills Fire Department

During the week of October 5th, Evans Elementary celebrated National Fire Prevention Week. Members of the Cimarron Hills Fire Department were at Evans to share the message of fire safety and to pass out helmets and stickers to students. The fire department brought their trucks for students to check out and sit in!

Thank you so much to our community partners for sharing this important information with our students!

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Care & Share Updates Remington's Donation Totals

Last week, Care & Share updated Remington Elementary with their new totals for their total pounds of food collected. Their totals were:

  • Pounds: 1,269
  • Total Meals: 1,058

Together, they collected 66,278 pounds and $133,502.79, resulting in a converted total of 1,136,300 pounds – the equivalent of 946,917 meals – to support our neighbors in need! What a phenomenal effort from staff, students and our local community!