August 6, 2014

Dear Parents and Students,

Welcome to the 2014-2015 school year!

To all of our new families and students beginning at Denison, I want to welcome you to Denison and to Montessori. Maria Montessori described her educational philosophy as an “aid to life”. Montessori students learn reading, writing, mathematics, science, geography, history, social studies, and physical and arts education. They also learn to follow their interests, develop independence, take part in a dynamic community of people and become life-long learners who understand their unique role in the universe. We have an ambitious curriculum that we believe serves children and their families well. There will be opportunities throughout the school year to learn more about Montessori. Again, welcome to Denison.

Last year we began the work of exploring extending Denison’s school day to allow for full implementation of the Montessori model.  This year we will have an additional 15 minutes to serve our students.  We will continue to explore ways to fully implement our plans over the next couple of years.  Please stay tuned for involvement opportunities around this important work.  We have also received a waiver to the district fall and mid-year assessments.  Denison’s staff will be exploring ways to measure student growth within their Montessori classroom environments.

I would like to welcome the following people to the Denison staff:

  • Erin Anwander-Schmitt will be the new directress in Room 102.  Erin has many years of experience as a Montessori teacher and comes to us from Gilpin Montessori with a deep understanding of the unique challenges of Montessori within DPS.
  • Caroline Robbins will be the new directress in Room 103.  Caroline is Montessori trained and has been teaching at Kunsmiller for the last few years.  Room 103 will continue to be our TNLI (Transitional Native Language Instruction) primary classroom.
  • Andrew Alberti will be our school psychologist intern this year.  He will be at Denison on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

I would like to welcome the following people back to Denison in their new roles:

  • Julie Acree-Gould will be our literacy interventionist.
  • Hanna Desjardins will be co-teaching with Dorothy King-Stockton in the mornings and will serve as our extended learning time coordinator in the afternoons.
  • Kelsey Larson will be our school library para
  • Toni Philips will be our science enrichment teacher
  • Halie Gianulis will be our math tutor and elementary para in room 107.
  • Stacy Eisenberg will be our new TNLI (Transitional Native Language Instruction) teacher in Room 206.

There have also been some physical room changes this year.

  • Carrie Henrichs and all of her students are moving from Room 108 to Room 106.
  • Kelly Rosenbaum and all of her students are moving from Room 206 to Room 204

New district-wide policy regarding building visitors:

All visitors to the school district shall display a temporary visitor ID badge while they are in any school district building or on school district grounds during school hours.  Upon entering a school building, visitors shall report to the school office to register and receive a temporary visitor ID badge.  These badges will not allow either interior or exterior access to the facility.  Visitor badges must be worn at all times while the visitor is in a DPS-owned facility.  Visitor badges must be returned to the main office upon checkout.  Visitors who do not comply with this policy will be escorted from the property.  School staff members who observe visitors without report identification are requested to escort the individuals to the main office immediately. 


Please stay tuned for an incentive program that we are creating to reward families with excellent attendance rates!

  • All students must be at Denison by 9am.  Students who are tardy will be marked accordingly in Infinite Campus.
  • Dismissal is 3:45 for 4-year-olds and Kindergarten and 4:00 for all elementary students.
  • The office will not call up to any classrooms for a student to be released after 3:30.  Please pick your child up prior to 3:30 or you will need to wait for a member of the office staff to go and retrieve your child for you.
  • Teachers will be instructed to not release students to parents from their classrooms.  Please meet your students outside the building.  If you are in a rush, park your car and wait for your elementary aged child to come out the door by the garden.
  • Please be aware that early release is marked in infinite campus as a 1/2-day absence and will impact your child’s attendance record.
  • If a child is not picked up by 4:15 and his/her parent/ guardian has not contacted the office and cannot be reached by phone, DPS security will be called.
  • DPS security will be called for any child who is still in the office at 4:30 regardless of if we have spoken with a parent/guardian.

I hope to see you all at Denison’s Back to School Ice Cream Social on Thursday, August 21 for all students (5:30-6:15) and Elementary Information Night (6:15-7:15).  There will be childcare for SIBLINGS of elementary aged students.  I will meet with elementary students while parents meet with teachers and I will meet with parents while students meet with their teachers.

As always, my door is always open to you and I look forward to meeting the new families and students joining our community and getting to know all of you better this year.


Katy Mattis


Denison Montessori School

“A child’s inner life is nourished by an environment warm with love.”–Maria Montessori

Posted in Special Events & News | Comments Off


2014-2015 School Year REGISTRATION

Registration will be held August 6th and 7th from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Registration will be held in the library and that parents will need to enter through the playground.

Please bring your $30 donation with you to registration. Cash or Check only.

Note for primary families: Please note that you will need to bring your complete primary health packet with you to registration. This is the packet you received at the end of the school year. This includes your child’s physical and immunizations. If your child has a physical scheduled at a future date please bring proof of that to registration. You cannot register your child without this packet.
Primary also note that if your school of choice application is incomplete you will not be able to register your child.

You will find out who your child’s teacher is at the back to school ice cream social not at registration.

The Ice Cream Social is Thursday, August 21 5:30-6:15 for ALL families.  The Elementary Back to School Night will be immediately following at 6:15-7:15.  There will be child care for siblings of elementary students.

Please call the office if you have any questions. 720-424-8080

Posted in Special Events & News | Comments Off

Principal Phone Call~ May 4


I seemed to have a lot of problems with last week’s robocall.  The one that was supposed to go out on Sunday never went out and then when I tried to resend it on Monday, I sent a robocall from March.  I sincerely apologize for any confusion this caused.


Denison’s Cinco de Mayo celebration was a ton of fun on Friday.  It is always so wonderful to see the students and the community having so much fun together.  Many many thanks to Tamatha and Alice for all of the work they put into making it such a wonderful success!


There seems to be an increase in tardies and early releases recently.  Please remember, school starts at 9am and ends at 3:45.  If your child is not in school during those times, he or she will be marked accordingly.


If your 3 year old through 5th grade child is not returning to Denison next year, please contact the office at 720-424-8080.


There will be a CSC meeting on Tuesday May 6 at 5:30pm.  We’d like to welcome Jolien Haro, Nathan Karet and Lisa McGrath onto the CSC for next year and a heartfelt thank you to all of the parents who ran for the seats on the CSC.


There will be a community meeting to review the school schedule next year.  You should have all received a letter on Wednesday detailing the new school time of 9-4 for next year.  This meeting will be from 6-7:30 on Thursday, May 8.  There will be childcare and translation.


Also on Thursday, May 8 from 4-7, there will be a Chipotle fundraiser.  Please see the flyer in your Friday folder.  You are welcome to swing by Chipotle on your way to the community meeting and enjoy your burrito during the meeting.


Remember, there is no school on Friday, May 9.


There will be a weeding party for the garden on Friday, May 16 right after school from 4-7pm.  Please bring tools and gloves.  We will have hot dogs when we are done.


Staff Appreciation week has been postponed and will now be held the week of May 27-30th.  Please visit for more information on how to help.

Posted in Special Events & News | Comments Off

Important Flyers Went Home Wednsday April 30

2 important flyers went home today, Wednesday April 30.

1 is the ballot to elect the parent members of the Collaborative School Committee.  It is due back at Denison by 4pm on Friday, May 2.  Please vote for 3 parents.

The other is a letter notifying you of the finalized school hours for the 2014-15 school year.

We hope to see you at our Cinco de Mayo celebration on Friday.


Posted in Special Events & News | Comments Off

Principal Phone Call~ April 20

Next week, on April 22, 23 & 24, 5th graders will be taking the Science Colorado Measure of Academic Success assessment. This replaces the Science TCAP the 5th graders have taken in the past. A flyer went home in last week’s Friday folders about this.

We are still in the process of finalizing Denison’s school hours for next year.  There will be communication about this in next Friday’s Friday folder.

In this Friday’s folder there is a flyer for Denison’s Annual Cinco de Mayo celebration.  It will be held on Friday, May 2.  There are a number of volunteer opportunities on this day!

Parent Perception Surveys also went home in this week’s Friday folder.  These are very important and are due back by Monday, April 28.

Also in Friday folders are nomination forms for Denison’s Collaborative School Committee, these are also due back by Monday, April 28.

We are excited that Denison’s Shakespeare Students will be preforming on April 25 and Denver’s Shakespeare Festival downtown.

Posted in Special Events & News | Comments Off