LPS Heroes Recognition Series No. 9

At their regularly scheduled meeting on Thursday, April 22, 2021, the Board of Education recognized the LPS Assessment Team and the Innovation, Equity, and Learning Team as LPS Heroes. Both teams have had to flex a lot this year, and their work above and beyond their normal responsibilities warrants their recognition.

Assessment Team
The LPS Assessment team consists of Kevin Fraser, assessment manager, Cheryl Bonnell, assessment operations specialist, and Kyle Tillman, systems administrator, Google Workspace for Education and head of the LPS Web Help Desk. 

Colorado Measures of Academic Success (CMAS) testing this year has been a big issue: Are we taking them? Can we get a waiver? Wait, they want us to take some but not all of them? How do kids opt out? How do kids opt in? It seemed the questions and confusion were never ending, but our team responsible for organizing assessments was nothing short of amazing. Despite all of the chaos around this year’s CMAS assessments, this team was nimble, organized, and customer service-oriented. They dealt with crazy requirements and constraints. At the time of the CMAS launch, the technology worked, test proctors were prepared, and kids were taking the right tests. Thank you to Kevin, Cheryl, and Kyle for all the work and problem solving that went on behind the scenes to make this happen successfully.

Innovation, Equity, and Learning Team
Our Innovation, Equity, and Learning team members have busy workloads in a normal year, but this year, they were asked to take on additional responsibilities to ensure the success of LPS’s Temporary Online Program for Students (TOPS). They navigated their day-to-day tasks while also managing synchronous and asynchronous instruction, TOPS office hours, grading, and PLC meetings with TOPS colleagues. Their work in TOPS would be a full-time job in itself, but this team has also put in a tremendous amount of work in their respective positions.

Amy McIntosh, innovation, equity, and learning coordinator, and Heidi Wagner, teacher on special assignment for innovation, equity, and learning and TOPS, have been busy leading teacher leader cadres (TLCs), which are a modified Professional Learning Community (PLC). They’ve also been conducting LETRS training, which stands for Language Essentials for Teachers of Reading and Spelling. Amy has worked with Christy Swafford, innovation, equity, and learning coordinator, to design an innovative summer learning experience for our kindergarten through eighth grade students. Christy has also facilitated and coordinated culturally responsive education residencies with Dr. Stembridge and schools participating in that program. Ann Summers, innovation, equity, and learning coordinator, has been hard at work developing science curriculum resources. The Board will be deciding whether to renew the curriculum adoption this fall. Jess Hesselberg, district librarian, has been transforming library spaces and advocating for culturally responsive books and instruction throughout the district. Dana Levesque and Bill Gilmore, both innovation, equity, and learning coordinators, have been heavily involved in the development of the new Career Exploration Center (CEC). They’ve been deep into redesigning our career and technical education (CTE) program as well as designing career pathways. They’ve also been working on expanding our concurrent enrollment offerings. This team also works to support each other in all these areas, and everyone has some input and responsibility across the board. Thank you for all of this work--it’s important, it’s hard, and it has been noticed. Thank you to the IEL team!

(Left to right) Ann Summers, Kelly Perez, Dana Levesque, Christy Swafford, Robert Reichardt, Heidi Wagner, Lindley McCrary, Brian Ewert, Jack Reutzel, Amy McIntosh, Angela Christensen, Cheryl Bonnell, Jess Hesselberg, Bill Gilmore
Not pictured: Kyle Tillman and Kevin Fraser