The Hawk's Nest

September 2021

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COVID 19...What we are doing at VCS

Dear Vanguard Classical School families:

We want to emphasize the importance of having everyone do their part to keep our community safe during this new “Delta” wave of COVID-19. At both VCS East and VCS West, we start with what Aurora Public School (APS) is requiring for safety, and then go even further with additional measures because we care so much about the safety of our students and staff. We are in constant communication with APS as well as Tri-County Health regarding the most current COVID-19 safety protocol and procedures.

Here is what we are currently doing:

  • All staff are required to be vaccinated.

  • All students and staff at both buildings are required to wear masks, regardless of vaccination status.

  • All students entering either VCS building are temperature screened.

  • Additional nursing space is utilized at each campus to provide additional safety.

  • Teachers are following "social distancing" protocols” throughout each campus.

  • Each campus has a Day Porter to assist with disinfecting/cleaning.

  • All common surfaces, door handles, etc. are disinfected throughout the day.

  • Bathrooms, & other common areas are cleaned regularly throughout the day.

  • Both campuses are cleaned each night with desks, chairs & surfaces disinfected.

  • Touchless disinfectant dispensers are located throughout each building.

  • Disinfectant wipes have been provided for each classroom so that staff can wipe down desks and other classroom surfaces throughout the day.

  • Upgraded HVAC systems and filters have been installed at each campus to minimize air flow transmission risk.

  • VCS has purchased additional HVAC filtration systems for every VCS room.

  • Sneeze guards have been installed at the front desk areas of each campus.

  • Touchless purified water drinking stations have been added at both campuses.

  • Parents/guardians cannot access either building during drop-off or pick-up.

  • Between drop-off and pick-up, parents/guardians can only access the front desk area and must wear masks, regardless of vaccination status.

For your own peace of mind, it is also important to note that since August 15th, all VCS students have been required to wear masks regardless of vaccination status. Also, since the beginning of the 2021-22 school year, all VCS staff have been required to be vaccinated, and since August 22nd, all VCS staff have been required to wear masks regardless of vaccination status.

What can you do to help us keep our VCS community safe?

  • Teach your children COVID-19 safety through your own personal example.

  • Screen for symptoms and keep your children home if they show ANY symptoms: (fever/chills, cough, loss of taste/smell, shortness of breath, diarrhea, sore throat, runny nose, vomiting, headache, body aches).

  • Keep ALL children at home even if just one is symptomatic or has tested positive.

  • Send your students to school with masks that fit correctly.

  • Wear a mask if you are on campus. We can provide one at the entrance.

  • At home: practice frequent and correct hand washing.

  • In your community: wear masks, practice social distancing, wash hands.

  • Get vaccinated. We cannot emphasize enough that it is the singular, most important thing for you to do to keep your children and our community safe.

  • Get tested. There are free testing sites for all APS families throughout Aurora and at the APS Central Offices. To find a local community testing site near you please visit Tri-County Health Department’s testing website.

  • Have a plan in place to pick up your child if they become ill during the school day.

COVID-19 remains active in our communities and exposure could occur outside the school setting. Please monitor all members of your family for symptoms of COVID-19. Individuals experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, regardless of vaccination status, should stay home, isolate, and seek testing. People with symptoms should report all test results to VCS to determine when you can return. If you are concerned about possible exposure and/or the severity of you or your child’s symptoms, consult your healthcare provider. If you have questions please contact the VCS front office at 303-691-2384 or

Thank you for your attention to this important matter. VCS is a strong community, and it takes each of us to do our part to be successful. Let's keep our kids learning best by keeping them in school with their teachers!


Jay Cerny, VCS Executive Director

Keria McCafferty, VCS West Principal

Emily Van Luit, VCS East Principal

Dennis Steele, VCS Business / Operations Director

Alisha Porter, VCS West Nurse

Annie Garner, VCS East Nurse


Parameters around dress up day:

In order to maintain a school environment which is safe and conducive to learning, all clothing must be appropriate so as not to disrupt the learning environment and not interfere with the health, safety and welfare of any person. All students must adhere to the parameters below:


ACCEPTABLE: Dress for success attire

NOT ACCEPTABLE: Ripped or torn pants. See dress code, pg. 20 titled “bottoms” in Parent/Student handbook


ACCEPTABLE: Dress for success attire


  • Inappropriately sheer, tight or low-cut clothing (e.g., spaghetti straps, midriffs, halter tops, half-shirts/crop tops, backless clothing, tube tops, garments made of fishnet, mesh or similar material, muscle shirts, etc.) that bare or expose traditionally private parts of the body including, but not limited to, the stomach, buttocks, back and breasts

  • See dress code, pg. 20 titled “Tops” in Parent/Student handbook

ACCEPTABLE: Modest skirts/dresses, low heel shoes (no more than 2 inches)

NOT ACCEPTABLE: Low cut dresses, skirts/dress with a side slit past the knee, heels greater than 3 inches


  • Any clothing with holes or that are torn/ripped

  • Pajamas and slippers

  • Clothing worn in such a way as that undergarments can be seen

  • Sunglasses, bandanas, doo rags, hats

  • Any clothing; including outer wear that contains any logos advertisement, symbols, words, slogans, patches, or pictures, etc., that:

    • Refer to drugs, tobacco, alcohol, or weapons

    • Are of a sexual nature - By virtue of color, trademark, or other attributes.

    • Any clothing that denotes membership in gangs which advocate drug use, violence, or disruptive behavior

    • Are obscene, profane, vulgar, lewd, or legally libelous

    • Threaten the safety or welfare of any person

    • Promote any activity prohibited by the student code of conduct

    • Otherwise disrupt the teaching-learning process

If you are purchasing pictures, have your student bring the order form with payment on picture day, September 1, 2021. You may also order online.

School Accountability Committee

We are seeking two parents to sit on our School Accountability Committee this year. This committee meets quarterly to discuss school data and improvement. If you are interested in learning more please email Keria McCafferty at

FSCP ~ Family, School, and Community Partnership Committee

VCS is excited to get our parent and community volunteer group back up and running. The first meeting will be September 23, 2021 at 3:30 pm.

Innovations Before and After Care

Families that are using Innovations, if you are picking up prior to 4 pm please do not send to innovations. VCS is paying for every child that attends. Accurately signing up for program use is greatly appreciated.

Celebrations and Classroom Parties (p. 28, Parent/Student Handbook)

VCS expects teachers to keep both the number of parties and time spent away from academic study to a minimum. Teachers are traditionally asked to use the last period of the day for a party. VCS does not celebrate religious holidays. VCS wishes to make sure that all students feel included, therefore we encourage families to include all students if birthday party invitations are passed out at school.

Food items for Core Knowledge celebrations, Culture Fair, birthday celebrations, etc. should primarily be store bought and in individual packaging. Should families choose to prepare a food item (i.e. tamales for our 1st grade Mexican Fiesta, mashed potatoes for our Kindergarten Thanksgiving celebration, etc.), recipes including all ingredients must be shared, and items must be submitted to teachers no later than two weeks prior to the event, and will be pre approved by a member of the leadership team. Approval will be communicated to families one week prior to the event. Failure to adhere to these guidelines will result in items being sent home without any consumption.

For birthdays, especially, families can drop items off at the front desk, but will not be allowed to go to classrooms as this will disrupt learning. Treats should be passed out to students at the very end of the day, and ideally right before dismissal.

Fall Sports

This Fall we are offering the following sports for 5th - 8th graders. Each sport costs $60 per season. Students will also need a school physical. If a student is not vaccinated, but 12 years of age or older the student will need to get a COVID test every two weeks.


Cross Country

Flag Football

3rd - 5th Grade Girls!

Girls on the Run Registration is Open!

The program starts September 14th. The cost is $20 per girl.

K-2 Soccer Shots!

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3rd - 6th Grade Soccer

  • Practices start September 13th and will be on Mondays and Wednesdays
  • Games are on Saturdays
  • See Ms. Barry for registration paperwork
  • $45 per player - this covers the jersey and season fees

K-5 Mad Science!

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September Core Virtue


Perseverance is

  • The ability to keep going without giving up
  • Sticking with a task
  • Showing commitment, pride, and a positive attitude when completing tasks
  • Trying again and again and again
  • Being patient and willing to work hard

COVID-19 Vaccines

Vaccines are available for individuals ages 12 and older. APS, in partnership with STRIDE Community Health Clinic and the Colorado Department of Health and Environment (CDPHE) is hosting ongoing FREE vaccination clinics for families. To learn more about the clinics and to sign up, visit

COVIDCheck Colorado

Individuals who are symptomatic should get tested for COVID-19. Please remember that COVID-19 testing is free and available through COVIDCheck Colorado.

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Apply for Free and Reduced Lunch

It is important for every family to complete a Free and Reduced Lunch Application every school year even if they think they do not qualify. Applications are available at and only take about 10 minutes to complete. If you applied last year, click ‘Login’ to enter the site and apply again for the 2021-22 school year. If you are applying for the first time, click ‘Register’.

Families who require assistance completing the application may contact the Nutrition Services Department at 303-343-0295 or their child’s school.

Why are Free and Reduced Applications Important?

  1. If your child qualifies for free or reduced price lunches, they qualify for free or reduced price breakfasts at school, free or reduced field trip admissions, and even free or reduced school fees (does not include athletic fees).
  2. Your child and many others may receive other school benefits. The number of applications that are returned and approved can affect how much funding our school gets to help students meet academic benchmarks, including materials like books and computers.

Some parents are concerned about listing income amounts and social security numbers on the application. Any personal information you provide will not be shared. Free and reduced price meal applications are confidential. Your information will only be used to determine your child's eligibility for the school meal programs. We cannot share your information without your written permission. Students who receive free and reduced price meals are not identified. No other students or staff will know who is and who is not receiving free or reduced meals.

Pay 2021-2022 School Fees Online

You can now pay your school fees through our online platform of RevTrak. You can go to our website or click here to pay any school fees your child may have. We will only be accepting online payments for school fees at this time.
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Uniforms are back!

Vanguard will be returning to our traditional uniform. We will host our uniform sales at meet and greet.

If you have gently used uniforms that you would like to donate, please drop them off at our front desk.

School Supplies

Click the button below to access school supply lists.

2021 - 2022 Calendar

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Parent/Student Handbook

Click the button below to access the 2021-2022 Parent/Student Handbook. There have been some updates, so please read through this thoroughly. Enrolling in our school means you agree to all items presented in this handbook.


We are looking for people with positivity and a passion for our mission to join our board of directors! We have one community member board seat open. At this time, there are no open seats for VCS parents/family members. Per our bylaws, we can only have on parent representative from each campus, and those spots are occupied.

Our board of directors assists us with our strategic direction and our long-term sustainability. Their leadership helps ensure our vision and values and our commitment to equity are lived out in our daily work.

Board members work collaboratively with other members, the executive director, and the school leadership team.

We value a broad range of personal and professional backgrounds.

Interested? Please contact our Executive Director Mr. Cerny at, to discuss this leadership opportunity.

Do You Love Vanguard?

If so, we'd love to have you share some positive reviews on Google and We'd also love to hear from you if you'd like to share a testimonial directly with us, send them to

Thank you for your support!

Infinite Campus Parent Portal

Log in to the Infinite Campus Parent Portal to access student course schedules and to check grades and attendance.

Contact Ms. Cordero or Ms. Prado for assistance at 303-691-2384.



It is a new school year which means we are in need of ALL your children's updated immunization records and medical forms. If your child has a medical or nonmedical exemption from immunizations we will need the correct form filled out, signed by your child's health care provider, and sent in to the health office.

You can find the exemption forms below or at this website:


Safe2Tell Colorado gives YOU a safe, anonymous way to help someone who is struggling or hurting. Learn what to look for, what to listen for, and what to report.

VCS West Events

Picture Day

Wednesday, Sep. 1st, 8am

VCS West

No School ~ Labor Day

Monday, Sep. 6th, 12am

Vanguard West

7th and 8th Grade Washington, DC Info. Meeting

Tuesday, Sep. 14th, 5pm

Virtual through Google Meets

Skate City Night

Thursday, Sep. 16th, 6-8pm

15100 East Girard Avenue

Aurora, CO

Skate City is no longer offering a "fun bus." All attendees will need to be transported to and from Skate City by their families.

VCS Spirit Week

Monday, Sep. 27th, 8am to Friday, Oct. 1st, 3:15pm

Vanguard West

Fun Run Virtual Assembly

Tuesday, Sep. 28th, 2pm

Vanguard West

October Count Day

Friday, Oct. 1st, 7:45am-3:15pm

Vanguard West

This is the day the state decides our funding for the year. It is important that your child(ren) are in attendance for the day.