The Pony Press

November 4th, 2022

Welcome November!

Families and Community,

As I reflect on this week, I feel so incredibly grateful to live and work in this supportive community! Our Dia de los Muertos celebration in Green Mountain Falls was an incredible success on Sunday! We saw so many creative costumes, listened to an amazing performance from both Nube Nueve (Mr. Ferguson's Latin band) and our UPES Honor Choir, created masterpieces at the craft table with Mr. Batson, enjoyed some salsa dance lessons, and tried out tasty treats at the Trunk or Treat tables! Thank you for taking the time to attend this community event. It was great to see so many of you, and also great to see so many people I didn't know!

We also had a wonderful Costume Parade on Monday! Pre-K led the way and we stretched all the way back to 6th grade as students were able to parade around the playground and enjoy the gorgeous weather we had! If you missed that video, it's up on our Facebook page.

The weather sure took us for a ride this week from Monday's sunshine to Friday's opportunity to test out our ice skating skills! Please continue to encourage your children to bring jackets, hats, and gloves to school. We go outside as much as possible- even when it's chilly! If the windchill falls below 15 degrees, a red flag day will be called, and students will be inside for recess until it warms up.

Next week, we are getting ready to start an exciting new initiative called WIN Mountain Math. Longitudinally, District and UPES math data has been lower than state expectations. This was only exacerbated with COVID when many students experienced a learning loss to no fault of their own. Especially with math, when students miss parts of skills, they have difficulty meeting grade level expectations which build upon previous knowledge. To address this, we have carved out a 20-minute intervention/extension block for the entire school! From 12:30-12:50 on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, students will attend WIN (What I Need) Mountain Math groups. These will be multi-age groups that focus on a wide range of foundational math skills. Skill groups are identified by mountain ranges rather than grades- so students might be in Mt. Harvard one rotation and Mt. Everest the next. Every 6 weeks, we will re-assess and determine movement to next skills. We are incredibly excited for the opportunities this will provide to fill skill deficits and extend higher learners into some project based learning. This is truly an all-hands on deck initiative to meet our students where they are and to help them GROW even more! If you'd like to volunteer during this time, please contact me at and we can get you all set up!

I hope you have a wonderful weekend doing whatever it is that fuels your soul!


Your partner in education,

Jackie Powell, Ute Pass Principal

Important Info for next week...

Gold Week

Monday, November, 7th

  • Specials Day 2
  • Honor Choir Practice 3-3:45 pm

Tuesday, November 8th

  • Specials Day 3
  • PAC Meeting 3 pm in the gym

Wednesday, November 9th-Late Start Today!

  • Specials Day 1
  • Creative Movement Connect14 class at UPES

Thursday, November 10th

  • Specials Day 2
  • Ping Pong Connect14 Club at UPES
  • Chili Cook Off and Silent Auction- 5-7 pm at UPES

Friday, November 11th

  • Specials Day 3
  • Veterans Day Concert 2 pm- Families Welcome!
  • Furry Friends Dismissal

Important Dates in November


2- Late Start Wednesday

8- PAC Meeting 3 pm in the gym

9- Late Start Wednesday

10- Chili Cook Off

11- Veteran's Day Concert 2 pm (Families welcome!)

16- Late Start Wednesday

21st-24th- Thanksgiving Break

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UPES Chili Cook Off

Thursday, Nov. 10th, 5-7pm

9230 Chipita Park Road

Cascade-Chipita Park, CO

Join us for a chili cook off to raise funds for environmental learning opportunities at Ute Pass Elementary School! Email Mrs. Weisheipl at to register your pot of chili, or simply show up that evening to vote for your favorite or join the silent auction!
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Seed Slip Recipients

These students showed growth at UPES this week! They are growing hearts, minds, bodies, and the earth!

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Monday Morning Announcements...

Check out preschool's debut performance on our morning announcements!
Preschool Performs the ABCs

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

Dia de los Muertos Celebration

UPES Honor Choir Performs with Nube Nueve at Dia de los Muertos Celebration
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Costume Parade/Halloween Fun

Watch us Grow!

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Preschool enjoyed a visit from Peaches this week!

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Superintendent Domangue made a guest appearance on our Wednesday announcements!

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3rd grade took another field trip this week! They went to the Pioneer Museum in Colorado Springs and extended their learning from the classroom!

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Huge thank you to our PAC for supplying goodie bags for all the staff!

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Kindergarteners catching big air as they play the game "Helicopter" in PE class!

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1st grade mathematicians practiced subtracting one using manipulatives during math class on Thursday!

Meet Melissa Cowman!

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Position at UPES: Preschool Lead

Work History: I spent a couple of years working for the YMCA as a Summer Day Camp Counselor, and providing before and after school child care at a local school. Then I worked for a hospital system as a Physical Therapy Aide, a front desk coordinator, and finally a registrar in an Emergency Department. I interned at the Marvin W. Foote youth correctional center while I worked on my BSW degree from Metro State University. After graduation I took a position with Denver Area Youth Services/PATHS. I was a case manager in a Day program for at-risk youth.

Hobbies: I enjoy camping, hiking, boating, sup boarding, photography, reading, singing in the kitchen, and traveling. I'm a sucker for a good baseball game, GO Red Sox!, and I enjoy country dancing.

Favorite Food: Dolmades, and a freshly piped Cannoli with a Latte!

Pets: We have two dogs, a barn cat, one duck and 16 chickens.

Why Ute Pass: This school Rocks! I have three children, all very different in personality and talents. Through the years, each of them had teachers/staff who have recognized and encouraged their individual strengths. That is a credit not only to the amazing staff but also to the culture and mission of the school itself. I respect and admire the staff at Ute Pass, I love the small environment that allows for personal attention for all of the children, and I feel very grateful to have the opportunity to join this team.

Specials Schedule for November

Our 3-day rotation schedule for specials classes allows students to have more access to PE, Music, and Art! We know it might be a bit more confusing for families instead of every Monday being one special, but we want our kids to be exposed to more of these amazing classes while avoiding students always missing a certain special if there is no school on Friday or Monday. Should there be a snow day, we will just move that day to the following day. For example, if a snow day fell on Thursday, November 17th (Day 1 for specials), the following day would become a Day 1. Here's a calendar to help you navigate this at home. Please reach out with any questions!
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Counselor's Corner

Small Group Counseling!

Fall counseling groups are up and running! Please reach out to Stephanie Wilson if you have any changing needs where we can better support your student!

Her email is You may also call her at 719-685-2209 if you have any questions.

Ute Pass Elementary PTO/PAC

PAC is the team that works hand in hand with the staff and community, to enrich how education is experienced within our mountain school. We have found ourselves uniquely positioned to move forward; steeped in tradition but with all the promise of new ideas. UPE has the highest enrollment to date and with that comes fresh perspective. If you are a parent or caregiver from the littlest of littles in preschool up to the "Where did my baby go?" 6th graders, please consider coming to our meetings on the second Tuesday of each month. Kids are welcome!

If you are unable to make it to meetings and would like to be a part of PAC please reach out.

Thanks so much,
Amanda McCloskey
PAC President

Upcoming PAC Meetings- 3:00 pm in the Gym

  • November 8, 2022
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MSSD14 is hiring fulltime positions and subs!

Scan the QR code or contact Marsha Weimer at to find out how to join the Manitou team!

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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-

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-

Any questions or concerns, please call Paula Faucette, Director of Nutrition Services, at 719-685-2005 or email

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 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 first semester:

  • August 31
  • September 14
  • September 21
  • September 28
  • October 5
  • October 26
  • November 2
  • November 9
  • November 16
  • December 7

Connect 14

Connect 14 is an incredible opportunity for students that attend Manitou Springs School District 14. They offer several amazing K-12 classes that highlight the importance of arts integration from Climate Kids Club to Creative Movement to Ping Pong! Registration opened on Monday, August 8th and the season will run from September 6th-December 15th.

Two 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 to sign up today!

22/23 School Year Calendar - Including Late Start Dates.

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Please see the attached document below for more information on help during the holidays!


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at the foot of Pikes Peak in the Rocky Mountains.