Explorer Express

Happenings Around Dry Creek Elementary

October Count

Next Friday is the annual October Count day! October Count is the official student membership count for all Colorado public school districts. When students are enrolled, scheduled, and in attendance as of the official count day, the district receives funding per student for the district's operating revenue. This is an important day for all Dry Creek Explorers to be present. Please do not schedule appointments on this date and make arrangements to have students at school next Friday, October 1st. Thank you!
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Coffee with the Principal - Tuesday, September 28th

Please join Mr. Watanabe for coffee and conversation on Tuesday, September 28th from 8:00-9:00 am. This month we will meet outside near the covered picnic area.
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Book Fair Next Week!

The Book Fair will open on Monday, September 27th, from 10:00 am until 2:00 pm for Teachers and Students to come down and preview books and create their wish lists.

Book Fair Hours for In-Person Shopping:

Tuesday, September 28th: 7:30am-11am and 2:30-3:30pm

Wednesday, September 29th: 7:30-8:30am and 2:30-3:30pm

Thursday, September 30th: 7:30-8:30am and 2:30-3:30pm

Friday, October 1st: 7:30am-10am

You can also shop online anytime by clicking the button below!

Fun Run Schedule

On October 1st, we will hold the Fun Run as a culminating event to the fall PTCO fundraiser. Below is the schedule for when each Creek will run. The track will be set up in the grass near the baseball field. Families are welcome to come and watch students run.

Please be sure to register for the Fun Run by visiting http://www.getmovinfundhub.com/. Our school identifier is 5d2ca381ea76d. More information is listed under the PTCO update below.

Each Creek will have 30 minutes of running followed by 30 minutes of cool-down and enjoying Kona Ice!

Remember to wear your Creek color from head to toe!

Creek Colors:




Beaver- YELLOW


Wolf- RED

Fun Run Schedule:

Dove and Fox:

Run: 8:30-9:00am

Kona Ice: 9:00-9:30am

Bear and Elk:

Run: 9:00-9:30am

Kona Ice: 9:30-10:00am

Beaver and Wolf:

Run: 9:30-10:00am

Kona Ice: 10:00-10:30am

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Nurses Corner

Illness at School and Decreasing the Spread: How Can you Help?

Please keep your student/s home from school if they are feeling sick. If your student has symptoms seen with COVID-19 (regardless of their vaccination status), they should not come to school.

Symptoms of COVID-19 include ANY of the following: Feeling feverish, having chills, temperature of 100.4 F or greater, new or worsening cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, loss of taste and smell, sore throat, runny nose or congestion, muscle aches, headache, fatigue, nausea or vomiting, and/or diarrhea.

We encourage anyone with symptoms to reach out to their healthcare provider and seek out COVID testing.

No-cost COVID testing is available to anyone in the Cherry Creek community who needs a test:

· For current Cherry Creek students and staff: https://www.primarybio.com/l/cherry

· For friends, family and community members: https://www.primarybio.com/l/cdphe

The best way to prevent experiencing severe illness due to the COVID-19 virus or the upcoming seasonal flu (influenza) virus, is to get vaccinated.

COVID-19 vaccines are available throughout the Denver-Metro area: https://www.cherrycreekschools.org/site/Default.aspx?PageID=13483

Seasonal Flu vaccines will be available at most sites after October 1st, but many grocery and drug stores have them available all year.

Information on COVID vaccine clinics and flu shot clinics hosted at CCSD schools will be coming out very soon! Be on the lookout for these clinic dates and time!

Below is a link to a general guide for students experiencing symptoms, when they should stay home and when they can return to school. Please note, if your student has been exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19 and is currently experiencing symptoms this leads to an automatic 10-day isolation per (Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE).


Mask Update as of 8/31/2021

Letter from Superintendent Christopher Smith on 8/31/2021:

Dear Cherry Creek Schools Community,

On Monday evening, Tri-County Health Department issued a new public health order that requires the wearing of a mask by all people age 2 years and older in all school and child care settings.

Due to this new order, the Cherry Creek School District will now require ALL students and staff inside ALL school buildings to wear a mask. This universal mask requirement is for all students, adults and visitors to school buildings and applies to all grades – PreK, elementary, middle and high school. The order goes into effect Wednesday, Sept. 1.

The following is a statement by Tri-County Health Executive Director Dr. John Douglas regarding the new public health order:

“We have reached a point where transmission has increased significantly and is putting our communities at risk. We must now take the statutory responsibility and authority given to us by the Colorado Legislature to reduce the spread of communicable diseases and keep our communities safe. The new mask order will help to protect those who cannot get vaccinated and allow children to continue in-person learning.”

You can read the full Tri-County Health Department press release here.

Thank you for your partnership in following public health requirements that will help keep schools open for In-Person learning. We will continue our focus on supporting the mental health and social-emotional needs of students while providing rigorous learning experiences for all.

I am confident we can continue on a positive path for our students.


Christopher Smith


Additional Layered Strategies

CCSD will use a series of overlapping prevention strategies to protect student and staff health this year. The district will:

  • Promote vaccination and offer access to vaccines for families who choose to have their eligible students receive it – more information here;
  • Ongoing no-cost COVID-19 testing for students, staff and community;
  • Communicate known positive COVID-19 cases to Tri County Health Department so that they can contact trace with families appropriately;
  • Sustain positive airflow through ventilation systems in schools;
  • Continue high-touch cleanings in buses and high-traffic areas of schools;
  • Reinforce handwashing with students and staff; and
  • Reinforce the importance of students and staff staying home if sick or experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.

Early Dismissal on Wednesdays

Two years ago, Cherry Creek Schools and the Cherry Creek Education Association agreed to dismiss all elementary schools one hour earlier every Wednesday in order to enhance professional development and training opportunities for our elementary teachers. That change was not implemented during the 2020-21 school year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but it will be implemented starting in August. By having this specific time set aside, there will be less of a need to pull teachers out of the classroom during the day, which creates continuity for students and less of a reliance on substitute teachers. With this change, our elementary schools will still exceed the class time required by the Colorado Department of Education.

Elementary schools will dismiss at 1:45 p.m. every Wednesday. For families who participate in after-school child care, the after-school program will be extended every Wednesday at no additional cost. For families who need care, you can register with our Explorer Club Before and After School Program. Please contact our Director, Julie Cottorone, at jcottorone@cherrycreekschools.org for more information.

Visitors and Volunteers

We are excited to welcome volunteers and visitors back this year. If you are interested in volunteering or visiting for lunch, please review the information below!

Volunteering: Our classroom teachers have opportunities for volunteers to support the classrooms in a variety of ways. If you would like to volunteer in your child's class, please make these arrangements directly with the teacher. Volunteers will need to follow the masking protocol while inside the school and must check in at the main office upon arrival. Volunteers are also expected to sign the Dry Creek volunteer agreement prior to beginning helping in classroom settings.

Visitors: We welcome parents and family members to come to eat lunch with your child on special days such as birthdays or other occasions. Parents are encouraged to provide his/her own lunch. There are picnic tables outside of the cafeteria that makes a great place to enjoy lunch with your student at school (weather permitting). All visitors are required to wear masks while inside the school. For questions about volunteering or visiting Dry Creek, please reach out the main office at (720) 554-3300.

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What's for Lunch this Week?

Use the drop down menu and select "Dry Creek"

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Dry Creek Explorers Fun Run

All the money raised will support classroom needs/materials and funding for our awesome TA staff!

We Need All Parents to Complete 3 Easy Steps!

1. Register your student by visiting www.getmovinfundhub.com

It's free, easy, and fast to register! For School Identifier use 5d2ca381ea76d

2. Email and/ or Text your child's student fundraising webpage with 10-15 friends and family. It’s super easy!

3. Post on Facebook or Twitter It's two clicks of a button to post. The average parent has 300 FB friends. You'll be surprised when donations come in from distant relatives/friends from HS/co-workers. Post and see what happens!

Student Goals!

* We need 100% student registration please visit www.getmovinfundhub.com today!

* Each student is encouraged to raise $150.00

* Be an Overachiever Superstar by raising $300.00

Our TOTAL SCHOOL GOAL is $30,000.00

Event details:

· Register your Child today using School Identifier: 5d2ca381ea76d

· Event Date: 10/01/2021 (Schedule Above)

· Final Donation due date: 10/09/2021 11:59 PM

· We prefer online donations through your child’s webpage

Rent the Rock!

Dry Creek parents, students, and staff can “Rent the Rock” to recognize a birthday/academic achievement, show school spirit, thank/recognize a teacher or staff member, celebrate a graduation, etc. It’s a great way to spread a positive message, make someone smile and help build our Dry Creek Explorer community spirit. Spirit rock reservations are on a first-come, first-serve basis so make your reservation before your special day is taken! www.drycreekptco.org/dce-spirit-rock

Annual Pledge Drive

Fun Fact: If all of our families donated the suggested $150 per student during our fall pledge drive, we wouldn’t have to hold any additional fundraisers. Make your pledge today so you can feel good about ignoring PTCO emails.

During our pledge drive, participating families donate $150 per child attending Dry Creek to help update student classroom technology needs and fully fund our teacher assistants. A $150 donation per enrolled student covers the PTCO’s annual fundraising goals during the school year so you can consider yourself done. A Dry Creek T-shirt will be given for each pledge made. Your pledge drive donations can be made all at once or a little bit at a time with the Paypal subscription options below. The annual pledge drive ends October 1, 2021.

All donations are tax deductible, as Dry Creek Elementary PTCO is registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization (EIN 84-1246205).

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Dry Creek Accountability Committee Meeting

Wednesday, Sep. 29th, 6-7pm

This is an online event.

The School Accountability Committee is a parent group that works in collaboration with the principal in the areas of school achievement, unified improvement planning, school policies, and planning, budget decisions, and staffing considerations with the focus on the improvement of Dry Creek Elementary. The committee welcomes participation from all members of the community.

The topic for the September meeting will include Back to School Updates and the plans for the Early Release Wednesday time with teachers.

These meetings will alternate between virtual and in-person. The first meeting on September 29th will be virtual via Zoom. A link will be sent out the week prior to the meeting date. Please RSVP if you would like to attend!

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

Parent, Teacher, and Community Organization (PTCO)

General Meeting Dates:

  • November 10, 2021 at 8:30am
  • January 12, 2022 at 6:30pm
  • March 9, 2022 at 8:30am
  • May 11, 2022 at 6:30pm

Coffee with the Principal

Coffee with the principal begins at 8:00 am right after drop-off in the library on the following dates:

  • September 28, 2021
  • October 26, 2021
  • November 30, 2021
  • January 25, 2022
  • March 29, 2022
  • April 26, 2022
  • May 24, 2022
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CCHS Homecoming Carnival

Cherry Creek High School is hosting a Homecoming Carnival on Friday, October 8, from 5-7 pm in the Athletic Courtyard. All feeder students and families are invited to join and enjoy over 40 booths and activities, including several food trucks brought in for the evening. The homecoming football game vs. Grandview will start at 7 pm.

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Board of Education Candidate Forums

The Cherry Creek School District will have an election on Nov. 2, 2021, to choose two Board of Education directors. The two directors will be elected to serve four-year terms in Districts D and E.

The district will host six candidate forums to give parents, staff and community members the opportunity to get to know the candidates running for the CCSD Board of Education.

You can view the list of candidates who will be on the ballot on this web page. More information about the candidates will be posted in the coming days as they turn in their informational packets.

The dates for the upcoming forums are below. Please note that masks will be required for all candidates and attendees at these forums. CCSD has a mask requirement in place for all schools in the district, per the public health order from Tri-County Health Department.

  • Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2021 at 6:30 p.m. in the Eaglecrest High School Auditorium.
  • Wednesday, Sept. 22, 2021 at 6:30 p.m. in the Cherry Creek High School Auditorium.
  • Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2021 at 6:30 p.m. in the Grandview High School Auditorium.
  • Thursday, Sept. 30, 2021 at 6:30 p.m. in the Smoky Hill High School Auditorium.
  • Thursday, Oct. 7, 2021 at 6:30 p.m. in the Cherokee Trail High School Auditorium.

We encourage you to attend a forum and learn about the candidates who are running for Board of Education in the Cherry Creek School District.

Language Translation Resources

Families who need Dry Creek Elementary communication translated, please contact the liaison listed:


Please contact Kati Brinks at kbrinks@cherrycreekschools.org for support with this resource in your language.


እነዝህን መረጃዎችን በተመለከተ በቋንቋዎ ዕገዛን ለማግኘት ከፈለጉ እባክዎን ተሊሌን በዝህ እሜይል ያግኙዋት thirpa@cherrycreekschools.org


يرجى الاتصال بـ (جميعة صباحي أو جاودة العلمي) على (jsebbahi@cherrycreekschools.org أو

jdajanialami@cherrycreekschools.org للحصول على الدعم مع هذا المورد باللغة العربية.




귀하의 언어로 이 자원에 대한 지원을 원하시면 (리아 리) 에게 (llee6@cherrycreekschools.org) 로 문의하십시오.


Пожалуйста, обращайтесь к Ларисе Бака по адресу: lbaca3@cherrycreekschools.org для получения поддержки с помощью этого ресурса на своём языке.


Fadlan la xiriir Omar Nur cinwaanka emaylka-onur2@cherrycreekschools.org si aad u hesho macluumaad ku qoran luqadaada.


Si necesita ayuda con este recurso en su idioma, póngase en contacto con Ilse Chavez Maldonado en ichavezmaldonado@cherrycreekschools.org, Rosa Han en rhan4@cherrycreekschools.org, Helena Gognat en hgognat@cherrycreekschools.org o Milagro Nuanes en mnuanes@cherrycreekschools.org


Vui lòng liên hệ với Thuý Ngọc tại Lchung2@cherrycreekschools.org để được hỗ trợ về tài nguyên này bằng tiếng Việt.