Cougar Community Connection
A weekly newsletter from your principal, Shannon McPherson
We wrapped up this week with all kinds of celebrating with our students for the INCREDIBLE job our kids and families did raising money through the Fun Run for our school. The Harlem Wizards basketball players came to visit us today as the culminating piece of our week, celebrating kids and communicating messages of hard work, perseverance and resilience. There was such great energy in our school and we can't wait to see our staff members who volunteered to join the rest of our feeder schools in an entertaining show at HRHS when they take on the Harlem Wizards on October 23rd at 6:30pm. Check out the section below in the newsletter where you can buy tickets for your family and check out the Harlem Wizards in action. It will be a great event and it benefits our school as they donate 2 dollars for each ticket our community purchases.
A Note From PTA
Thank you to everyone that helped us celebrate the Fun Run this week! We had a limo lunch with students raising over $750.
We had our very top earners be principals for the morning with Mrs. McPherson. The next tier top earners did a root beer float party.
The Principal Double Dare was also Wednesday. If you missed it, then watch the link here: Zoom Recording Passcode: TSR*JFS7
At the assembly this morning, Mrs. Halvorsen's class won the Golden Shoe Trophy! Second place was Mrs. Dimino's class. Third place was Mrs. Holmes' class.
The three top earning classes were Mrs. Barr's class, Mrs. Larrazo's class, and Mrs. Holmes' class. They received Bahama Bucks shave ice & an extra recess!
Fall Spirit Week
- Monday: Color the World with Kindness - Wear tie-dye shirts, socks, etc.
- Tuesday: Power of One-sies - Wear your favorite onesie!
- Wednesday: Spirit Wear - Wear CRUN gear or colors
- Thursday: Celebrate Our Differences - Wear mismatched clothes!
- Friday: Be Unique/Shine Your Light - Wear glitter, sparkles, or neon!
- Tuesday, October 10: Cranelli's Restaurant Night from 4-9pm for Cougar Run families. Check out the flyer in your child's Friday folder for all the details. Remember, parking can be a challenge, so get there early to find a space. Reservations are strongly encouraged!
- Friday, October 13: PTA Meeting in the Learning Commons or by Zoom at 8:45am
- Monday, October 23: Harlem Wizards @ HRHS at 6:30pm playing against our CRUN staff members - Buy Tickets https://harlemwizards.com/schedule-tickets/
- Friday, October 27: Donuts with Grownups at 7:30-8:30am --> Grab your favorite male role model and bring them to school for some yummy donuts, fruit, juice, & coffee!
Spotlight on~ Our Building Engineer, Jason Dehaven
Facts About the Upcoming Bond/MLO Measure
Dear Cougar Run Elementary Community,
On August 8, the Douglas County School District Board of Education unanimously voted 7-0 to place a $66 million Mill Levy Override (MLO) and $484 million Bond on the November 2023 ballot.
If passed by voters, these new funds would be used at our school to:
Increase teacher and staff pay
Enhance safety and security
Addition of Campus Security Specialist
Refresh student and staff technology
Make much needed repairs and upgrades to our building
Replace restroom countertops
Install new intercom system
Upgrade sound system
Teachers in the Douglas County School District earn, on average, $19,000 less compared to a neighboring school district. Additional MLO funding, if passed by voters, would enable DCSD to pay teachers and staff more competitively and to increase security staffing support for our schools.
DCSD teachers, on average, would receive a 9% pay increase, as reflected in these salary schedules
Support staff, such as bus drivers, educational assistants, custodians, etc., would receive a 9% pay increase
Other staff would receive a 7% pay increase
A $484 million Bond, if passed by voters, would be used to expand trade, career and technical education opportunities; perform safety and security upgrades; and ensure safe and adequate learning environments for students and staff. The Bond would provide for three new elementary schools in growing areas of our county, as well as the expansion of two middle schools.
If the MLO and Bond are approved by voters, Douglas County homeowners can expect to pay approximately $200 per year for a home valued at $1,000,000.
You can read more about DCSD’s funding challenges and arguments for and against the ballot initiatives on our website. Thank you for being an engaged and informed member of our school community!
Cougar Run Elementary School
From ROCKS Council
ROCKS Council is excited to announce the collection of pop tabs for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Aurora for the 2023 - 2024 school year. This is a perfect way to help both the environment and the community. Have you been collecting your pop tabs over the summer? Bring them in and put them in your classroom collection jar! If you haven’t, it’s the perfect time to start! Start collecting aluminum tabs off of pop/soda cans, soup cans and/or adult beverages at home! You can even ask relatives and/or start a trend at your jobs and have others start collecting them too! Bring them to school in a ziplock bag as often as you would like and put them in your classroom jar.
Green Team News
We are looking for a family who can assist with the pick up by Longmont Dairy of our recycled milk caps. It is super easy. When we meet the required amount, Mrs. Aksamit will reach out to you for a pick up of bag(s) of milk caps and provide you with a date that a drive with Longmont Dairy will be by your house to collect the milk caps. Can you help? Please reach out to Mrs. Aksamit if you are able to assist with this. firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks!
A Note From the Office Team
Have you completed your Express Check In? This is the best way to ensure that your contact information, emergency contacts and your child’s health concerns are up to date for school staff.
Through Express Check In, you will be guided to My School Bucks, where you can pay your student’s yearly school fees which were assessed to each child’s account in July or has been added for new students soon after enrollment. Every student will have a $30 “Instructional Materials Fee” which is initiated by the district “To recover part of cost of textbooks, supplies and materials”. Grades 3-5 receive a planner, which is optional only in 6th grade. Please note that as field trips and other activities occur through the year, these will be added prior to those activities and are not reflected currently as a fee. Mrs. McNamara will send a link to the grade level specific to each field trip to pay the fee. You will also see any fees that are past due.
We continue to encourage all families to fill out their FREE and REDUCED applications as it allows them to get school/bus fees waived and ties directly to our school/District funding.
This benefit is so much more than a free lunch.
Halloween At Cougar Run October 31st
Get Your Tickets to The Harlem Wizards Game at HRHS
October is National Bullying Prevention Month
Here are the spirit/dress up days for National Bullying Prevention Month:
Monday, October 2nd - Wear blue for World Day Of Bullying Prevention.
Monday, October 9th: Color the world with kindness - wear tie-dye clothes, socks, etc.
Tuesday, October 10th: Power of One-sies - Wear your favorite onesie, overalls, or jumpsuits.
Wednesday, October 11th: Spirit Day - Wear Cougar Run gear/colors to show that together we are strong.
Thursday, October 12th: Celebrate differences - Wear your best mix-match clothes.
Friday, October 13th: Be Unique/Shine Your Light - Wear sparkles, glitter, sequins, or neon colors.
Enrichment topics/lessons this week (Silver 10/2 - 10/6)
3: Growth Mindset / Goal Setting
4: Executive Functioning / Goal Setting
5: Grit / Problem Solving
6: Executive Functioning / Goal Setting
Helping Hands for the Holidays is an Integrated Family Community Service enrichment program that provides children aged newborn to 10 years old with holiday gifts through the generosity of community sponsors and donors. Please have your families use this site to apply.
Check out what DCSD has to offer your child!!
Advanced/Gifted Programming Information
DCSD is committed to implementing equitable practices to increase access to advanced/gifted learning opportunities. Based on state and national recommendations and requirements, we implement Universal Screening for students in 2nd grade (February) and 5th or 6th grade--a student's final year of elementary school (November).
6th Grade Universal Screen
As part of this process, ALL students in Cougar Run not identified for gifted programming will take the Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT) on November 7 & 8. This assessment indicates the level and pattern of cognitive development of a student in comparison to grade and age mates. These general reasoning abilities, which start developing at birth and continue through early adulthood, are influenced by experiences gained both in and out of school.
If your child is already identified for gifted programming, they will not participate in this universal screen testing. Your Gifted Education Facilitator will contact you directly with information about this process.
Gifted Identification Referral Testing
If your child is in grades 3, 4, 5, and you believe they need evaluation for Gifted Identification and Services, you may refer your child for testing by initiating the Gifted Identification Process.
NOTE: Requesting this assessment automatically initiates the process to evaluate for Gifted Identification.
Please request CogAT testing for your child by completing the Referral for Gifted Identification linked HERE
Upon receipt of this form the Gifted Education Facilitator will connect with you to discuss next steps in the gifted identification process.
Why Does Attendance Matter?
HRHS Relay For Life
Upcoming Dates to Remember
October 7-HRHS Relay For Life Event
October 9-13 Spirit Week (See Counselor's Corner in Newsletter for Details)
October 10-CRUN Restaurant Night
October 13- 9:00 PTA Meeting (Welcome to all parents!!)
October 16-20- Fall Break-No School
October 23- 6:30 Harlem Wizards Event at HRHS
October 26-6:30 DCSD Pathways Expo @ Legacy Campus
October 27-Donuts with Grownups
October 30-November 3- CRUN Bus Canceled
October 31-9:00 Halloween Parade/Celebrations
November 3-Staff Development Day- NO SCHOOL FOR STUDENTS
November 7-Election Day
November 10-9:00 PTA Meeting (Welcome to all parents!!)
November 13-17- Fall Book Fair
November 20-24- Thanksgiving Break-No School
November 28- 9:00 Cougar Run SAC Meeting
November 30-5:00-7:30pm Art and Cultural Celebration Night
December 8-9:00 PTA Meeting (Welcome to all parents)
December 11-15 Holiday Shoppe
December 11-15- CRUN Bus Canceled
December 15- ROCKS Assemblies 9:00 prek-3rd/ 2:15 4th-6th (ROCKS Invites will come home in Friday Folders the week of December 4 for any student who was chosen for ROCKS this first semester. )
December 22-January 8-Winter Break No School
January 9-Classes Resume at CRUN