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A diverse group, the newest recruits to Academy District 20 (ASD20) were comprised of:

  • 57 first-year teachers,

  • 24 ASD20 alumni,

  • 35 educators brand new to Colorado.

While their journey’s to the district were unique, they found common ground in their newfound energy to live the district’s mission, “We educate and inspire students to thrive.”

As they whisked through the halls between sessions, members of the district‘s Communication Department, asked them, “How do you educate and inspire students to thrive?”

Nearly 30 of the district’s newest teachers, counselors and nurses scribbled answers on a piece of paper before taking a quick picture, marking their first official day at ASD20. Just like these educators, their answers were unique, but there was a common theme, vowing to recognize each student for their individuality.

“I want [my kindergarteners] to believe they are capable of more than they imagine themselves to be,” Nicole Colbert, a new teacher at Foothills Elementary wrote.

Tylie Prince, a 4th grade teacher from Ranch Creek Elementary said she will, “find a way to make each day meaningful for students and meet their various needs with thought and care.”

“I will educate and inspire students to thrive by genuinely caring about them, their individual journey and their future success,” wrote Melissa Shetler, a new math teacher at Rampart High School. 

Other educators promised to embrace one of ASD20’s value statements, “We believe relationships matter.”

“I inspire students by trying to have a personal relationship with each one, so they feel confident enough to take risks and make mistakes,” wrote Rebecca Slaman, a new first grade teacher at Explorer Elementary School.

Jessie Doyle, a music teacher at Academy Endeavour and Home School Academy said, “We work together as a team, not just to learn and create music, but to support each other as human beings.”

As the start of the school year approaches, some teachers were ready to deliver and live the district’s third value statement, “We believe in quality education.”

“I hope to make math interesting and fun in order to keep students engaged,” Lisa Redinger, a new math teacher at Air Academy High School wrote. 

Fellow math teacher, Natalie Oestriech from Chinook Trail Middle School said, “Collaboration is huge for me. I strive to encourage teamwork and learning from each other, including me!”

Each of these educators starts this new chapter of their careers the week of Aug. 16, when more than 3,000 staff and 25,000 plus students head back to class.