Thursday, October 11, 2018

DCIS Connect Newsletter (Oct 11-17, 2018)

Weekly Newsletter for Parents, Staff and Students

October 11-17, 2018

(Leer en Español usar el traductor de Google aquí.)


  • Open House for Prospective Students: Thursday, Oct. 11, 8–9:15 am
  • Signs of Suicide Training for Parents: Friday, Oct. 12, 2 pm, DCIS Community Room
  • High School Homecoming Dance: Saturday, Oct. 13, 7–10 pm
  • Student-Led Parent-Teacher Conferences: Tuesday-Wednesday, Oct. 16-17, 3:15-7:15 pm


  • Fall Break – NO SCHOOL: Friday–Tuesday, Oct. 19–23; school resumes Wednesday, Oct. 24 (White Day)
  • Middle School Halloween Dance: Friday, Oct. 26, 6–8 pm
  • Collaborative School Committee (CSC) Meeting: Tuesday, Oct. 30, 4:30–6:30 pm, DCIS Community Room
  • Open House for Prospective Students: Thursday, Nov. 1, 8–9:15 am
  • Drama Club Fundraiser: Monday, Nov. 12, 4-8 pm, Pizzeria Locale, 550 Broadway, Denver (mention the DCIS Drama Club when ordering and the club will get 33% of the proceeds)
  • DCIS Drama Fall Play: "Nosferatu: The Legend of Dracula," Thursday-Saturday, Nov. 15-17, 6-8 pm, DCIS Auditorium
  • Thanksgiving Break – NO SCHOOL: Monday-Friday, Nov. 19-23; school resumes Monday, Nov. 26

Dear DCIS Community,
As you are aware, our student-led conferences are Tuesday, Oct. 16, and Wednesday, Oct. 17. Our teachers are looking forward to meeting with you and your student. If you have not already set up a conference with your student's advisement teacher, please reach out. Some teachers have created a website for easy sign-up here. If your student's adviser is not listed, please check with your student, as some teachers have sent letters home. You are also welcome to call and set up an appointment.
Thank you!
Jenna Martin
Dean of Instruction


Dear DCIS Parents,

We have some good news to report this week. Two of our amazing staff members were awarded "A to Z" grants from the DPS Foundation! Melisa Springsteen received grant money to take first-generation college-bound students on college visits this fall and spring. Very cool. Caroline Kerswill received a grant to improve our sound system in the theater by adding more microphones. Congrats to these two innovative educators. Our students will benefit from your hard work!

In other news, this Saturday is the DCIS Homecoming Dance for our high school students. The dance starts at 6 and ends promptly at 10. Please make arrangements to have your child picked up no later than 10 pm, as we do not have supervision for students after that time. The "glow in the dark" theme should make for a fun evening!

Meanwhile, the middle school dance will be on Friday, Oct. 26, from 5:30 to 8:30 pm. Please plan to pick up your child no later than 8:30, as we do not have supervision after that time. Halloween is the theme for this dance, and we even have a haunted house! It should be a scarily fun evening. School-appropriate costumes are welcome as long as there are no face masks, and no weapons (real or fake) of any kind. Face paint is fine, but no masks please. Students are welcome to wear their costumes that day to school, following the same guidelines.

Next week we will have student-led conferences on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings. If you have not received an invitation from your child's adviser, please reach out to him or her today to make sure you have a reserved time slot.

Students have some time off over the next two weeks. Because we try to keep the number of Blue Days and Green Days even, we have made a few changes to our calendar. Here is a quick summary:

Monday, 10/15         Blue Day (normally Mondays are White Days)
Tuesday, 1016          Green Day
Wednesday, 10/17    Blue Day
Thursday, 10/18       Green Day
Friday, 10/19            No School for Students
Monday, 10/22         No School for Students
Tuesday, 10/23        No School for Students
Wednesday, 10/24    White Day

Thursday and Friday of that week will be Blue and Green Days, respectively, as they normally are.

Looking forward to seeing you all next week for our student-led parent-teacher conferences.

Theresa McCorquodale


Dear DCIS Parents,

The adolescent years are marked by a roller-coaster ride of emotions — difficult for youths, their parents and educators. It is easy to misread depression as normal adolescent turmoil; however, depression (among the most common of mental illnesses) appears to be occurring at a much earlier age. Depression — which is treatable — is a leading risk factor for suicide. In addition, self-injury has become a growing problem among youth.

To proactively address these issues, DCIS is offering depression awareness and suicide prevention training as part of the SOS Signs of Suicide Prevention Program. The program has proved successful at increasing help-seeking by students concerned about themselves or a friend. It is the only school-based suicide prevention program listed by SAMSHA for its National Registry of Evidence-Based Programs and Practices that addresses suicide risk and depression while reducing suicide attempts. In a randomized control study, the SOS high school program showed a 40 percent reduction in self-reported suicide attempts (BMC Public Health, July 2007).

Our goals in participating in this program are straightforward:

  • To help our students understand that depression is a treatable illness
  • To explain that suicide is a preventable tragedy that often occurs as a result of untreated depression
  • To provide students training in how to identify their own or a friend's serious depression and potential suicidal thoughts 
  • To impress upon youth that they can help themselves or a friend by taking the simple step of talking to a responsible adult about their concerns
  • To help students know whom in the school they can turn to for help, if they need it

DCIS will be implementing the SOS program on Monday, Oct. 22, for 6th grade and Monday, Oct. 29, for 9th grade. If you do not want your child participating in the SOS program, please email Mr. Powell.

We will also be holding a parent training this Friday, Oct. 12, at 2 pm in the Community Room. Please contact Mr. Powell or Ms. Schmidt with any questions or concerns you might have.

Brian Powell, Social Worker
Tamara Schmidt, Counselor 


Yearbooks are available for preorder by following this link. Yearbooks are $35 this year and will only be available via preorder, so get yours today!!
NEW THIS YEAR: When you preorder your yearbook, you will be given access to two custom pages just for your child's yearbook! 
Senior families, watch for additional information about senior pictures and tributes. Please email
Abby Hoffman with questions.

The results are in! Congratulations to our two new parent representatives on the CSC, Lucy Rosas and Tanya Tribelhorn. Lucy and Tanya join current parent members Jennifer Gentry and Amber Shearer. Best of luck this year to all CSC volunteers! The next CSC meeting is Tuesday, Oct. 30, at 4:30 pm. All members of the community are welcome to sit in on these meetings.

We're getting close but still need another $528!

A textbook cannot and should not be the only source of information students receive on a subject. Supplemental texts are vital in a history class. DCIS' Advanced Placement United States History (APUSH) class covers over 600 years of history. The amount of content can be overwhelming, especially when students are relying on a dense textbook. AMSCO offers a supplementary resource that helps students by reviewing and synthesizing broader themes, regions, events and people and giving students the opportunity to practice historical thinking skills (stimulus-based multiple choice, short-answer questions, and essays) throughout.

APUSH teacher Jennifer Boyle has created a Donors Choose campaign to fund the purchase of these AMSCO books for her students. Please click here to support this ambitious project to ensure all AP students have access to a high-quality supplemental resource for years to come!


The Traveling School
Changing the World. One Girl at a Time.

The Traveling School builds female leaders with powerful voices and widened perspectives who are inspired to learn, able to adapt and take risks and engage with the world. Our students, from around the globe, share a common desire to redefine high school, engage in a global community and make positive change. At the Traveling School, the classroom is all around you. Learning comes from the places you visit, the people you meet and the stories they tell. Classes are experiential, place-based and interdisciplinary. With an emphasis on critical thinking and developing a strong sense of self, students are engaged and immersed in small classes with eye-opening academic activities.
Our semester programs offer teenage girls ages 15-18 the opportunity to explore the world and learn about themselves through academic, physical and cultural challenges. Sixteen motivated young women and four inspiring teachers travel to either southern Africa in the fall (Zambia, Botswana, Namibia and South Africa) or South America in the spring (Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia). Students earn full academic credit, immerse in new cultures, develop outdoor skills and build confidence during this transformational semester. Our
priority application
deadline for the 2019-2020 school year is Feb. 1, 2019. We have financial aid and merit scholarships to help your Traveling School dream become a reality.

Congratulations to Mr. Tassi, winner of the teacher prize from The Traveling School!


The October DenverRAP (Resource for Awareness and Prevention) Activity Calendar is out. Take a look at its calendar for all sorts of free family activities around town.

Did you know that the Denver Art Museum is FREE to all youth age 18 and under every day? As always, the first Saturday of each month is free for the entire family. New this month is the Print Studio in the Hamilton Building, Level 1, where museum-goers can try their hand at print-making.
Click here to register (so we have some idea of how many people to expect). If the online link doesn't work for you, just email Steve or call 303-355-2752.

DCIS is looking for volunteers to represent its Japanese program at an info table during this Japanese Culture Day Celebration. Please email Marie Meyer if you'd like to help out, even if you can be there only part of the time. Also, we are looking for Japanese decor or artifacts for our table. Please let Marie know if you have anything we can borrow. YOUR HELP IS MUCH APPRECIATED!! 

The following trips are on the books and looking for participants. Please email any of the teachers listed for more information.
Applications are due by this Friday, Oct. 12! To find out more about this dynamic group and how to apply, please email JoAnne Harada or call her at 720-217-2160. You can also visit the Youth in Action Colorado Facebook page or its website

Tami Schmidt: Middle school
Melisa Springsteen: High school last names A-J
Ted Brugman: High school last names K-Z

College Application Day (district-led): Wednesday, Oct. 24, 9 am-1 pm. Transportation and lunch will be provided. Negative permission slips will be sent out next week; only return it if your student will NOT be attending.


DCIS Website
DCIS Facebook Page
DCIS Parents Group (closed, non-school-sanctioned) on Facebook
DCIS Drama Club Facebook 
DCIS Travel Center Facebook
DCIS Foundation Facebook

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