November 2022

CPS Continues Planning For The Future

At the October 17, 2022 school board meeting, the Columbus Public Schools (CPS) Board of Education approved the hiring of Clark & Enersen Architects as the district's liaison to help determine the scope of work to be done for CPS in the near future.

In the upcoming weeks the staff and community will be engaged in a district wide conversation regarding facilities for the future of Columbus Public Schools.

Because the district has hired an architectural consultant, this does not mean any drawings or configurations will be designed until our community gives us the permission to pursue any projects.

Like the bond campaign of 2013, CPS will want to hear from the community their questions and concerns in regards to a future bond election for Columbus. Since our high school and reconfiguration for our middle school was completed in 2016, the dynamics of CPS and our community continue to change.

We have promised our community we will not proceed without feedback from:

  • Staff
  • Parents
  • Community Leaders
  • Strategic Planning Committee
  • CPS Board of Education
  • City Leaders
  • Chamber of Commerce Members
  • Local business and industry

Prior to 2013, there were very few houses or apartment complexes being built. However, since 2014 there have been over 700 new construction and/or renovation permits issued within city limits. This is significant because over 3,000 people commute into Columbus to work each and every day. At last count there were also over 1,200 job openings within the community. This could and likely will mean that our student population will continue to grow.

Speaking of student growth, our enrollment has also grown since the beginning of our last bond campaign in 2013. We have seen a growth of 403 students since that time.

Please review this graph provided by the Nebraska Department of Education

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Future Discussions

So what does this mean for CPS? Last spring we held two community town hall meetings to look at the enrollment trend data and housing information.

We believe that:

  • We need to provide a safe, secure and accessible environment
  • That Columbus is supportive of education in all schools.
  • The community will guide us in the right direction.

Our current building and sites list within our strategic plan has the following projects identified:

  1. HS Track & Football/Soccer Field Improvements, Concessions, and Storage
  2. Anchor Activity Complex
  3. Alternative School Center
  4. District Administration Offices within the Kramer Early Childhood Center

The town hall presentations and discussions also identified the following projects that need to be explored.

  1. Intermediate School/Middle School Expansion (Grades 5 and 6)
  2. Potential Child Development Center Expansion
  3. High School Program Expansion
  4. Cafeteria expansion at North Park, Emerson, West Park, & Centennial
  5. Additional Classrooms at Elementary Schools
  6. New cafeteria eating area for Middle School

There are more conversations to be had in the upcoming months. Please be part of that conversation and solution as we move forward to a potential bond campaign and successful election in the Spring of 2023.

We appreciate and value your feedback because as we are sure there are other things and opportunities to think about that have not yet uncovered.

Dr. L

CPS Shorts Debuts!

CPS Shorts Launches Soon!
  • Have you ever wondered,
  • What all happens when the Superintendent calls a snow day?
  • Where did the Discoverer Way come from?
  • What impact does our free and reduced percentage have on funding for CPS?
  • Finally, where did our Emergency Response Protocols come from?

You are about to find out!

In the upcoming weeks, months, and throughout the school year we will be releasing short videos with information on what does happen a week, day, and hour before the Superintendent decides to call a snow day.

You will find out from Mr. Kay the process for filling out a free and/or reduced lunch application and how that affects or Title funding.

We will be discussing our goal of "Non-Negotiables" when it comes to student behavior and our thinning tolerance for in appropriateness in our school. One of the shorts will discuss the difference between a lock out, lock down, and a hold in place as it relates to our Standard Response Protocol (SRP).

Finally, we will be having Mr. Hiebner and Mr. Mark Brown, former AD and current School Board Member discuss how and the Discoverer Way was implemented.

We are using these shorts as a way of educating our staff and community those things that are important to CPS, the safety of our students, and process and procedures that we have to follow as a school district. Be on the lookout on our website and social media platforms for more information on these topics.

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Come visit the Lighting Of The Anchor

Thursday, Nov. 17th, 5:30-7:30pm

3434 Discoverer Drive

Columbus, NE

Drive-through the main CHS front entrance circle drive for an opportunity to wave hello to Santa Claus and the Grinch.

Enjoy the colorful lighted anchor for the 2022 holiday season and receive a complimentary, commemorative ornament as supplies last. *ornaments limited to 1 per car

During the drive, tune into KLIR 101.1FM to hear seasonal music from CPS students of all ages!

Join Us ...

Join Us and Meet Christina Nilson!

👇👇Fill out the survey today! 👇👇

Your child's school wants to hear from you. This survey is to help institutions understand the quality of services provided to learners and their families. The survey results can be used to support the continuous improvement process. Your responses are anonymous, and no individual results are reported. Thank you for your support. Survey will close on November 9th!

Find the winter activities schedules for CMS and CHS!

Are we having a snow day?

Be sure that your cell phone number is updated with your student's school or schools. Families will first be notified by text message from the District with a follow up through the Remind App.

Come Join Our Team!

See all current CPS positions and learn more about why becoming a Discoverer makes sense for you!


Science You Can Feel

Emerson second graders went exploring in early October. The group traveled to Aurora and the Edgerton Explorit Center. The day was filled with hands-on science exhibits and demonstrations that featured all-senses observation and states of matter!

Click for more Emerson News!

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Columbus Public Schools - Discoveries

Discoveries is published three times a year (one printed and two digital) by the Columbus Public Schools, P.O. Box 947, Columbus, NE 68602-0947.

If you have any special needs requests that will assist you in participating in services, programs and activities of the Columbus Public School District, please contact your building principal or the Superintendent of Schools.