The mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on February 14, 2018 sparked a movement that has quickly spread. That movement showed up on the state capitol steps in …
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The mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on February 14, 2018 sparked a movement that has quickly spread. That movement showed up on the state capitol steps in Denver on March 14 when students from Colorado schools participated in an organized national walk out. The movement then rallied again on March 24 in over 400 cities around the nation for another nationally organized event entitled “March for Our Lives.”
Youth are mobilizing and demanding their voices be heard. Both the March 14 walk out and the March for Our Lives events were organized by youth who are calling for an end to gun violence in schools and communities. A good example of the youth movement is Manual High School graduate Tay Anderson. At 18, he ran for school board in October 2017 and gave an impassioned speech at the Ink! Coffee protest the next month. Now 19, he helped to organize the Denver March for Our Lives and is currently the chief of staff for House Representative Jovan Melton.
Asbury Elementary students celebrated a successful read-a-thon this past February. Courtesy photo.
Another walkout which has gained a national following is the Columbine anniversary walkout scheduled for Friday, April 20. A petition on change.org which supports the walkout states: “We are the students, we are the victims, we are change, fight gun violence now! High School students across the U.S.A., the way to fight back is here. There has been too much complacency on the part of politicians when it comes to gun violence. The time to act is now!”
During a rally at the March for Our Lives event, speaker Tom Mauser, father of Columbine victim Daniel Mauser, encouraged the youth, saying, “This is your Vietnam.” But Mauser’s words, speaking of his son, who died nearly 20 years ago, were a reminder that gun violence and mass shootings in the United States are not new. What is new are the voices. And today’s youth are not waiting to become policy makers. They are demanding change now and leveraging their power to get it done. It might be time we start listening.
Place Bridge Academy (125 Cherry Creek North Dr.) is hosting International Night Saturday, May 12, 5:00p.m.-7:30p.m. International Night is an annual celebration where students, staff and the community gather to celebrate Place Bridge Academy’s many cultures. “More than 60 different languages and over 40 different countries from around the world are represented in our student body,” according to the school’s website, place.dpsk12.org. The evening will be filled with games, prizes, entertainment and a variety of food.
Asbury Elementary (1320 E. Asbury Ave.) is celebrating a successful read-a-thon this past February. The annual event raises funds to help Asbury provide additional staffing, technology and student programs. This year, students read a combined total of 100,313 minutes over the course of one week and raised just over $15,000. The fifth-grade classes competed for the bragging rights of most minutes read and Mr. Altenburger’s class finished first, reading 17,170 minutes. Ms. Hoffer’s class put up a good fight and their combined reading minutes of 12,813 earned them a second-place finish.
St. Mary’s Academy (SMA) (4545 S. University Blvd.) Destination Imagination (DI) teams are headed to the State Tournament Saturday, April 7. Two middle school teams turned in exceptional performances at the South Metro Regional DI Tournament with one team placing first in the service learning category and winning the Da Vinci Award which is awarded for taking a unique approach to solutions, risk-taking and creativity. The other middle school team representing SMA at the regionals earned a second-place win in the technical challenge category. In addition to two middle school teams earning a berth at the state tournament, three lower school teams will participate in the state competition.
April is the time of year for cleansing rains, rejuvenation and standardized testing. South High School (1700 E. Louisiana Ave.) will be testing the week of April 9-14 and the testing schedule can be found at: denversouth.org/wp.
Students interested in playing tennis will have the opportunity to participate in the Junior Team Tennis (JTT) this summer at South. JTT is a United States Tennis Association league for players under 18 and of all skill levels. Players will play in two matches each Monday between June 11 and July 23, in addition to two practice sessions per week. Contact Coach Laura Leonard at Laura_Leonard@dpsk12.org for more information or to sign up.
The Denver Waldorf School (2100 S. Pennsylvania St.) will be holding their Devil’s Thumb Ranch fundraiser Friday, April 13-Saturday, April 14. There will be a variety of family and adult activities from horse-drawn carriage rides and morning yoga to community dinners and live music. Childcare will be provided for children over three. Lodge rooms start at $250 per night and suites are $350 per night.
Steele Elementary (320 S. Marion Parkway) is looking for volunteers for the annual Wash Park Home Tour. The tour is Steele’s major spring fundraising event and this year’s tour will take place on Saturday, May 12. Volunteers are needed for the street fair, ticket sales, home monitoring and a number of other positions. To sign up, go to myschoolanywhere.com.
Second graders at University Park Elementary School (UPark) (2300 S. St. Paul St.) will be working with the Child Rescue Foundation and the Teddy Bear Project as part of the annual service learning project. The community has an opportunity to participate by collecting any type of new or “slightly loved” stuffed animals and bring the animals to UPark. The stuffed animals will be distributed to children in the Denver community through the Denver Rescue Mission, Tennyson Children’s Home, Denver County Court Day Care, Children’s Hospital and many more.
Thomas Jefferson High School (TJ) (3950 S. Holly St.) welcomed Marcia Malone and Tiarra Carroll just after the new year. The Denver Tech Center (DTC) Rotary Club representatives attend meetings each week at TJ where they share their experiences on community projects and help students devise and research new opportunities for community focused projects.
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