Save the STEM School Highlands Ranch Charter

  • by: John Smith
  • recipient: Current and Former Parents of STEM School Highlands Ranch

The DCSD Board of Education approved a resolution for a conditional charter renewal contract on January 8, 2019 for the STEM School Highlands Ranch, which states: "If the School fails to satisfy the conditions precedent set forth in this Resolution, then such failure shall excuse the Board from renewing the School's charter and charter contract."

In order to save the STEM School charter agreement from DCSD from not being renewed, STEM School parents have started an on-line petition calling for the STEM School Board and Executive Director to be removed and for new leadership to be installed at the school. Current and former parents may sign the on-line petition at this link: https://www.thepetitionsite.com/664/508/126/

The following are the reasons for removing the STEM School Board and Executive Director and replacing with new leadership:

FAILURE to negotiate a 5-year contract resolution with the DCSD Board of Education (BoE). The shortened 3-year contract term places the STEM School at risk of not being able to secure a low-interest CECFA bond renewal for the STEM building because investors realize that the DCSD BoE lacks confidence in the school. By their own admission, before the DCSD BoE on January 8, the STEM Board referred to the shortened contract term as the 'death knell.'

FAILURE to manage a fiscally conservative budget as the STEM Board approved an exorbitant salary of $278,000.00 with a bonus in 2017 of $55,600.00 for the STEM Executive Director.

 FAILURE to provide a STEM Parent Complaint and Communication Policy to meet the first DCSD BoE condition for charter approval.  The January 8, 2018 resolution states: "Evidence that the school has adopted a parent complaint and communication policy, that the School has incorporated such policy into its practices..."

FAILURE to meet the academic needs of ALL students including those on an IEP/504 Plan. There have been nine OCR lawsuits filed against STEM School since 2016 including one currently pending.

FAILURE by the STEM Board of Directors to heed the advice of the May 17, 2018, DCSD Board of Education letter that suggested that a change in leadership should be considered because the STEM Head of School had not provided effective leadership.

 On January 23 and 29, current and former parents exercised their first amendment rights to inform the school community about the DCSD concerns for non-renewal by handing out flyers to STEM parents on public space.

 In response, the STEM School Board President and Executive Director issued an email to the school community on January 30, attributing the protests to "complete outsiders." 

 These claims are false, as current and former STEM parents have organized the protest.

 In addition, the tone in the email sent to the parent community gave the impression that there was nothing to worry about. This was a direct contradiction to the "death knell" comment made by STEM to the DCSD BoE.

 Furthermore, a STEM administrator and school security confronted the concerned parents, dubbed "complete outsiders," in an effort to discourage parents from exercising their rights.   

In fact, the STEM School Board President, Mr. Mark Alpert, confronted the STEM parents and took their pictures with his camera. However, no attempt was made to listen to their concerns.

 These actions are examples of the school's failure to properly handle parent concerns.  It further jeopardizes the STEM School's chances of satisfying the conditions set forth in the contract resolution by April 1, 2019.

 For more information visit the Facebook Page, SAVE THE STEM SCHOOL HIGHLANDS RANCH CHARTER and Sign the On-Line Petition at: https://www.thepetitionsite.com/664/508/126/

  Sincerely,

Proposed New STEM Board of Directors

John Smith

Founding Family STEM School Charter

Proposed STEM School Highlands Ranch Board Chair

Oil and Gas Professional

Jose Figueroa

Founding Family and Current STEM Parent

Law Enforcement and Detective

Caprice Weaver

Founding Family and STEM Parent

Finance, Business and Entrepreneur

Donor of the Polished Concrete Florring at STEM

True Nguyen

STEM Founding Family

Regis University Faculty

Business Administration, MBA, Master's in Non Profit Leadership, and Juris Doctorate

Three more parent Board Members will be elected by the parents within one month after the New Stem Board is seated

Update #26 months ago
STEM Parents,

Afterschool this week and next week from about 2:15 pm to 3:45 pm we are going to pass out flyers in the public space on Barron's Street across the street from the STEM School, asking parents to sign the petition,

Please contact me if you can volunteer and what day is best for you. We will provide the flyers.

We are gaining momentum.

John Smith
Proposed STEM School Highlands Ranch Board Chair
720 822-5930
Update #16 months ago
STEM Parents,

Thank you for signing the petition to the Save the STEM School Highlands Ranch Charter.

Please go to our new Facebook Page, "Save the STEM School Highlands Ranch Charter" and join our group. Please ask your Facebook friends to also join the page.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/266305694057731/?epa=SEARCH_BOX

We are gaining momentum.

John Smith
Proposed STEM School Highlands Ranch Board Chair
720.822-5930
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