The Eagle's Nest
Eagle Mosaic
  

 

Liberty  
Common 
Elementary 
School 
Common Knowledge, Common Virtues, Common Sense 
A National Charter School of the Year, A Nationally Recognized Blue Ribbon School,
 A Certified Official Core Knowledge Site School, A John Irwin School of Excellence ,
A Gilder Lehrman Affliate School  
Volume 17 Issue 15                                       
December 2, 2013
What's Happening at LCS
Dec. 3|Kindergarten Concert-6:30-7:30 pm
Dec. 6|5th Grade Movie Night-6:00-8:00 pm
Dec. 13|Free Dress Day
Dec. 13|Registration Deadline for Lil Dribblers Intramurals-1st and 2nd Graders (See below)
Dec. 16|5th/6thBand and Choir Concert-6:30 pm
Dec. 17|Character Assembly
                4th-6th-8:10-8:45
                K-3rd-8:55-9:35
Dec. 19|BOD Meeting-6:00 pm
Dec. 20|2nd Quarter Ends
Dec. 20|T-shirt Day
Dec. 23-Jan.3|Winter Break, NO SCHOOL
Jan. 8|Registration deadline for Love and Logic Training       
 

Health Technician Job Opening

We are sorry to say our Health Technician, Angie Selgren, is no longer an employee at Liberty Common School.  Angie has worked at Liberty for 12 years and has helped run the health office and maintained the teacher workroom.  We wish her the best in her next endeavor. 

 

We are looking to fill this position as soon as possible.  We have an interview committee in place and we will be collecting resumes to interview the most qualified candidates.  We take student health and safety seriously and will find the best person for this job.  If you know of anyone that is interested, please forward the below job posting to them.

 http://www.libertycommon.org/k-6-school/staff/job-openings/  

 

   

Suicide Prevention.  Parents interested in learning how to help people at risk for suicide may attend a ninety-minute training session on the three-step QPR (Question, Persuade and Refer) method.  The session is offered by the Poudre School District and covers warning signs, how to recognize people at risk for suicide, intervention skills, how to talk to and assist people at risk for suicide, referral resources, myths and facts related to suicide and more.  There is no charge, but registration is required by calling 490-3264.  There is one date remaining for training:  Wednesday, Dec. 4th 6:30 - 8:00 pm, Boltz Middle School Media Center (must register by Dec. 2).

 

   

Dismissal Dilemma. We have seen an increase in the number of telephone calls at the end of the day from parents asking us to relay messages to their student(s). The majority of the messages are regarding pick up-where and with whom.  Please discuss pick-up plans with your child in the morning or write them down in your student's planner.  These small steps will reduce the number interruptions in the classroom and front office. Thank you.   

 

Lost and Found is overflowing with jackets, lunch boxes, water bottles and much more. Please take a few minutes to visit the lost and found and claim your student's missing items.   


Lil Dribblers Basketball Intramurals for 1st & 2nd Grade Boys and Girls begins Sat., January 11, 2014.  Registration deadline is December 13th. CLICK HERE for more information and registration form.    

Chess piecesSchedule and Registration Now Available for 2014 Chess Club.CLICK HERE for information and sign up.





Liberty Common School recently hosted the 2013 FLL (First Lego League) Competition.  Liberty Common School's very own 4th grade students Tyler Cox, Mac Gentry, Eric North, Zachary Bayens and Camden Mills,(The Spartans) won 2nd Place and received trophies, medals and awards in the following categories: Best Robot Performance Award and Best Robot Design Award.  The Spartans also received the 2nd highest score out of 26 teams for a grand total of 348 points, earning an invitation to compete in the 2013 FLL State Competition to be held in Denver, CO on Sat. Dec. 14th! Good job and good luck Spartans! 

Spartan Robotics Team includes: Tyler Cox, Mac Gentry, Jonas Manalo(Heritage Christian),Eric North, Zachary Bayens and Camden Mills. 

In This Issue
News Tidbits
History of Liberty, Part 1
Liberty Common Charter
News From the Board of Directors
Love and Logic
Lecture Series
Fundraising Opportunities
Contact Us
Liberty Common School
1725 Sharp Point Drive 
Fort Collins, CO 80525
Phone: 970-482-9800
Fax: 970-482-8007

Office Hours: 7:50-4:00 p.m.


Our attendance line is (970)482-9800, option 2, please call by 8:30 a.m.

If you need to take your child to an appointment during school hours, please come to the Front Office, sign them out and we will call them out of class.

All students who arrive after 8:00 a.m. must be signed in at the Front Office.  It is important that a reason be written as this determines if the tardy is excused or not.  

Please note that you may go to your student's classroom and wait for them to be dismissed only after 2:50 p.m.

If your student is ill and you  want any/all homework, please contact the teacher by email as early as possible and homework will be available after 3:00 p.m. in the office. 

If you have any questions about these policies please contact Mrs. Ronen at jronen@libertycommon.org

Board of Directors
Sarvjit Gill            227-4202
Joel Goeltl           593-8556
Paulette Hansen 282-8455
Jeff Webb            545-9636
Bill Werst            631-8379
Amy Redstone    378-1170
John Rohrbaugh 225-2259

 

You may contact all members of our Board of Directors at  

  

  

December 19, 2013  
6:00 pm
Teacher's Lounge
Liberty Common School
       1725 Sharp Point Dr.      

 

  

News Tidbits

Liberty Directories now in the front office.  Pick up yours today for only $1.00.

Library in Use and off limits to families and students Monday- Friday 3:20- 4:30 with an after school booster.  We apologize for any inconvenience and appreciate your consideration.     

 


 


History of Liberty Common School
Part 1of 3
Liberty Common School has a unique history that is important for all to know.  There were many hardships and roadblocks encountered along the way.  The Founders persevered to make our school what it is today, but it wasn't easy.  We are fortunate to have had such persistent pioneers with a vision to make one of the best charter schools in Colorado.  

For the next three weeks, we will run, "How Did We Get Here?" by Dr. Maureen Schaffer.  Dr. Schaffer does a superb job of detailing the events that took place to develop Liberty Common School as we know it.  Our hope is that by sharing our history, we will better value the efforts by our founders to get where we are today.  It is because of their vision and foresight that we have the top elementary and high school in the state of Colorado.

We continually thank our founding parents for their hard work and dedication.  We could not have asked for a better educational system to educate children.  Our hope is that you feel the same. 

 
The History of Liberty Common School
By Dr. Maureen Schaffer (Founding Parent)

Liberty first opened its doors in September of 1997, but the story of Liberty Common School dates back much further.

In the early 1990's, true educational choice was non-existent in Poudre School District.  Parents without resources for private school sent their children to neighborhood schools.  Nebulous curricula were largely determined by individual classroom teachers, leading to gaps and repetition in student learning. Dissatisfied, small groups of parents began to read, research, and meet throughout PSD in search of better options.

One young couple, with a seemingly insatiable interest in education issues, emerged with a solution.  After months of research, Dr. Randy Everett and his wife, Ruth Ann, identified several fundamental elements they believed most parents desired in their children's schooling:

Parental choice in education
A core curriculum of specific content knowledge
Solid, content-driven skill instruction
Teaching the values of a democratic society
School-based management

Randy and Ruth Ann took their message on the road, placing advertisements in the local paper, and speaking in living rooms and meeting halls throughout the county.  Soon, hundreds of parents had joined the cause.

In the spring of 1993, Dr. Everett submitted a proposal to the PSD Board of Education to establish an Elementary School of Choice organized around the Core Knowledge Sequence.  The educational community fought the proposal with gusto.  District teachers testified before the school board, pronouncing the Core Knowledge Sequence too difficult to teach or learn.  In spite of this strong opposition, the school board approved the request, and the Washington Core Knowledge School opened with 125 students that fall.  This progressive episode in PSD's history is documented on pages 62-63 of The Schools We Need by E.D. Hirsch.

Washington Core Knowledge School flourished. Parents painted the run-down school building and gathered curriculum resources. Courageous teachers joined the team, and students began to outperform their peers at neighborhood schools.  In two years, enrollment had nearly doubled, and the waiting list numbered in the hundreds.  

To meet this high demand, the school board allowed Washington Core to further increase enrollment and move into a portion of the old Fort Collins High School building.  In a monumental construction effort led by parent volunteer Carol Christ, the high school building was converted to an elementary school over the summer of 1995.  Things were going well for Washington Core, or so it seemed.

The school district notified Washington Core that its two-year pilot program had ended.   Faculty would now be determined by the district, rather than the school's parent board.  Sadly, the district immediately fired two teachers, replacing them with "tenured excess" teachers from within PSD.

The founding parents were dismayed.   How could the school retain its integrity, if PSD brought in teachers who were not committed to the school's curriculum?   Fortunately, the Colorado legislature had provided an answer - the Charter Schools Act.
TO BE CONTINUED.....

The Critical Nature of the Liberty Common School Charter-Test Yourself
Liberty's Board and Administration subscribes to this view: It is the right and responsibility of parents to direct the education and upbringing of their children. To help you accomplish this goal, we encourage you to learn the foundational principles contained within Liberty's charter. In upcoming Monday Notes, you'll find a new quiz question pulled right from our charter. Test yourself. The correct answer can be found in the notes as well.  The charter can be found on our website. 

How Well Do You Know Liberty's Charter?

The mission statement of Liberty Common School was developed through research and discussion between parents, community members, teachers and administrators regarding educational philosophy.  How many books were reviewed?

a)        More than 20

b)        More than 200

c)         More than 2000

d)        More than 2,000,000

e)        All of the books ever written by educational authorities


News From The Board of Directors

Art, Physical Education, and Common Core State Standards

 

We heard from the art and PE departments at the recent Board meeting. 

The Board of Directors was highly impressed with the level of quality art being produced at both schools.  We saw some wonderful pieces recently created in the new HS ceramics class.  It is obvious that our art teachers take their responsibility of art education very seriously.  They incorporate what the children are learning in the classroom into art lessons.  For example, the castles the 4th graders create correspond with the Renaissance history sequence.  

 

Our Physical Education experts are using new techniques to teach correct form to students.  An iPad is used to take video of correct form and to use special apps to illustrate correct technique.  The iPad also streamlines grading. In addition to new teaching strategies, they can be very proud of the record of our sport teams.  Finally, we are looking forward to the new tennis equipment recently received through a grant.  Go team!

 

Our Board of Directors and Administration had a lively discussion regarding the new Common Core State Standards.  We are not concerned about these standards affecting our curriculum today; we will maintain our high standards provided by the Core Knowledge curriculum in grades K-8 and a rigorous classical liberal education in the high school. However, one concern is that Common Core has the potential to diminish choice in curriculum and local control across the country.  We feel strongly that parental choice in schools is critical. Another concern is the impact that these standards will have on the content and amount of testing mandated by the district, and how these assessments may ultimately diminish text and curriculum quality in the longer term as providers tailor all content to these lower standards. At Liberty, we will continue to monitor the advancement of this movement and remain vigilant in maintaining our current high standards.

 

Paulette Hansen and Amy Redstone, Liberty Common Board of Directors  

 

   

Love and Logic Returns to Liberty
Parenting Class For Liberty Parents.   Liberty is proud to offer again to all parents "America's most practical and entertaining parent training" Parenting The Love And Logic Way.   This is a six-week parent-training program that is very effective in helping with proven strategies covering everything from getting your kids out of bed in the morning, to establishing household expectations, discipline and positive relationships with teens.
 
Our expert instructor is Liberty mom Mrs. Shannon Yockey.  Cost is $125.00 per individual, $175 per couple, which includes workbooks and materials. All profits from the class will go to professional development for LCS and LCHS faculty and staff. Classes run from Jan 14th - Feb 18th 2014 for six weeks and will be held at Liberty Common School, 1725 Sharp Point Drive.  This class is open to all parents with children of all ages. Please register by printing out registration form (CLICK HERE) and submitting payment to the front office. 

For more information about the class, contact Shannon Yockey at (970) 224-2080 ext.1. Class size is limited and you must register by Wednesday, January 8th.


Liberty Common Lecture Series
Soak Up Some Solar Radiation.  It's safe to say our first two Liberty Lectures were outstanding events.  The third one will be, too.  LCHS's Dr. John Allen is a distinguished atmospheric chemist who's career research involved the effects of solar ultraviolet radiation exposure on humans.   Find out if your brand of sunscreen really works, and what happens if it doesn't - directly from a foremost expert on the topic.  Mark your calendar now for Tuesday, January 21st 6:30 - 7:30 PM in the LCHS Great Hall.

 

How Well Do You Know Liberty's Charter ? 

Answer: b
Giving Back to Liberty
Other Fundraising Opportunities.
"Cartridges for Kids" gives us cash for your old printer cartridges, cell phones, ipods, video games and consoles, laptops, GPS devices, PDAs, digital cameras and DVDs.  "Box Tops for Education," Campbell's soup labels and Morning Fresh Dairy bottle caps also provide our school with additional funding.  Drop-off point is in the front office.