D-11 students returning to school Aug. 17

       District 11 schools will reopen Wednesday, Aug. 17, with more than 4,000 students on the Westside in grades K-12.
       No major changes are afoot, either in the buildings or in grade-level offerings - other than Buena Vista Elementary offering classes for Montessori-experienced sixth-graders.
       To varying degrees, all of the schools will have an early non-curricular impact - the afternoon of Monday, Aug. 22, when many Westside roads will be closed because of the U.S. Pro Cycling Challenge, creating a “challenge” for picking up kids from school and getting them home. Details are provided in the story on the back page, with more to come next week, if changes or new information are provided from race organizers
       Here are information capsules on each Westside school (principals in parentheses):
  • Academy for Advanced & Creative Learning, 2510 N. Chestnut St. (Nikki Myers) - An open house is scheduled Friday, Aug. 12 at 7 p.m.
           With the relocation of D-11's Records Management Department after the 2010-11 school year, the K-8 charter school now has the entire 28,000-square-foot building to itself, allowing the addition of four classrooms. However, a waiting list still exists for all grade levels except seventh and eighth.
           The school, which focuses on gifted students but is open to anyone, started last year with an enrollment of just under 160 students.
           Current enrollment: 231.
           The phone is 434-6566.
  • Bristol Elementary, 890 N. Walnut St. (Manuel Ramsey) - An open house is scheduled Aug. 18 from 6 to 7:30 p.m.
           The school has a special focus on the arts.
           Current enrollment: 220.
  • Buena Vista Elementary, 924 W. Pikes Peak Ave. (David Brilliant) - A meet-and-greet is scheduled before school starts, Tuesday, Aug. 16 from 3:30 to 5 p.m.
           Waiting lists exist for all grade levels except the Lower Primary (ages 3 to 5) class, which at press time had two openings for 3-year-olds; and the sixth grade.
           The school received permission from the D-11 school board last spring to start offering sixth grade, in keeping with the Montessori educational approach.
           Current enrollment (for ages 3 and up): 228.
           The phone is 328-4100.
  • Howbert Elementary, 1023 N. 31st St. (Deb Hawes) - An ice cream social Monday, Aug. 15 at 5:30 p.m. will precede school's opening. There will also be an open house Sept. 1 at 5:30 p.m.
           Hawes, the new principal, replaces Gail Smartt, who became an assistant principal at another D-11 school as part of a retirement transition. Hawes is a first-time principal who had most recently been an assistant principal for three years in Harrison School District 2.
           Current enrollment: 287.
           The phone is 328-4200.
  • Jackson Elementary, 4340 Edwinstowe Ave. (Sara Miller) - An ice-cream social, with a chance to meet teachers and bring in school supplies, will be Tuesday, Aug. 16 from 3 to 4 p.m. There will also be an open house Sept. 1 at 6:15 p.m.
           A first-time principal, Miller replaces Anne Dancy, who had headed Jackson for 23 years before retiring from District 11 after 2010-11. Most recently, Miller was the assistant principal and “turnaround coach” (for students with learning issues) at Monroe Elementary in D-11.
           Current enrollment: 295.
           The phone is 328-5800.
  • Midland Elementary, 2110 W. Broadway St. (Jeremy Cramer) - An ice-cream social is planned before the first day of school, Monday, Aug. 15 at 6 p.m.
           Midland is a certified International Baccalaureate (IB) school.
           Current enrollment: 180.
           The phone is 328-4500.
  • West Elementary, 25 N. 20th St. (Terry Martinez) - Meet the teacher and bring in school supplies Tuesday, Aug. 16 from 2 to 4 p.m. An open house will be Sept. 8 from 6:30 to 8 p.m.
           The school has changed its end times. After last year's half-hour longer schedule (funded with stimulus money, which is no longer available), West will end school this year at 3 p.m. But the 8:30 a.m. starting time will continue. Because the middle school starts near that time (8:45 a.m.), before-schoolday opportunities will exist for teachers from his school and co-building-user West Middle School to get together on any overlapping educational issues, according to Martinez.
           Current enrollment: 332.
           The phone is 328-4900.
  • Holmes Middle School, 2455 Mesa Rd. (Rob Utter) - An open house is scheduled Sept. 7 at 6 p.m.
           Current enrollment: 740.
           The phone is 328-3800.
  • West Middle School, 1920 W. Pikes Peak Ave. (Clay Gomez) - A sixth-grade orientaton will be Tuesday, Aug. 16 from 6 to 7 p.m. Open house night will be Sept. 8 from 6:30 to 8 p.m.
           Current enrollment: 283.
           The phone is 328-3900.
  • Coronado High, 1590 W. Fillmore St. (David Engstrom) - The Westside high school will have freshmen only in attendance on the first day of school, Aug. 17. This plan came about, Principal David Engstrom explained to parents in the July-August Coronado newsletter to parents, because “many of you have expressed concern about transitioning your eighth grade student into high school.” The new students will be assigned Aug. 17 to trained upperclass “mentors” who will continue as contacts for the ninth-graders throughout the year, he said.
           An open house will be Thursday, Aug. 25 from 6 to 8:30 p.m.
           Current enrollment: 1,454.
  • Bijou School (alternative high school), 2904 W. Kiowa St. (Kathryn Presnal) - An open house will be Sept. 8 from 5 to 7 p.m.
           An all-choice school for students who want more freedom in their high school experience, Bijou aims at an enrollment limit of 135. Openings still existed at press time.
           Current enrollment: Not available.
           The phone is 328-7900.

    Westside Pioneer article