Our DPS Weekly: Additional Information from Denver Health on the Feb. 25 End of the Mask Mandate

Posted February 11, 2022

Steve Federico

Feb. 11, 2022
Hagan clic aquí para leer este mensaje en español.
Additional Information from Denver Health on the Feb. 25 End of the Mask Mandate
Dear Team DPS,
I want to thank our entire DPS community for your incredible support and cooperation with all of the health and safety guidelines throughout the pandemic, and especially this school year. This week, the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment (DDPHE) announced that its order requiring masks in all schools and childcare facilities will expire at the end of the day on Friday, Feb. 25. Please remember that masks are still required in all indoor school settings through Feb. 25. And they will still be strongly recommended even after the city’s mandate has expired.
We continue to collaborate closely with and follow the guidance of the experts at DDPHE and Denver Health who have been our partners throughout the pandemic. They have assured us that, with the current decline in severe cases and the high rates of immunity that we’re seeing, it is safe to lift the school mask mandate at this time.
I encourage you to watch the video (available below in English and Spanish) with the health expert who has been a key part of our COVID response team throughout the pandemic, Dr. Steven Federico, Director of Pediatrics for Denver Health. I hope you find the video helpful in understanding our approach to health and safety in this next phase of our COVID response. 
Again as a reminder, masks continue to be required inside all of our schools for the next two weeks, so thank you in advance for your continued support and cooperation. We remain focused on close collaboration with our health partners and providing the best possible in-person instruction and support for our scholars.
In collaboration,
Dr. Alex MarreroSuperintendent

Catch up with Superintendent Dr. Alex Marrero by following him on Instagram and Twitter, both @DrAlexMarrero!
SchoolChoice Window Closes Tuesday, Feb. 15
DPS’ SchoolChoice open-enrollment process closes Tuesday, Feb. 15 at 4 p.m., which means you still have time to list your school preferences for the 2022-23 school year. All applications are treated equally, as long as they are submitted by the deadline. Get started now by accessing the application here. Create an account or sign in using your Parent Portal login. Then, rank up to 12 school options and submit them by 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 15. As a reminder, by applying during the first round of SchoolChoice, you’re more likely to get your top selection!
Families can expect their SchoolChoice placement result in late March. Our system is designed to maximize the number of students getting their most-preferred school. Last year, 89% of transition-grade applicants were placed in their No. 1 option! Round 2 of SchoolChoice — for families who did not participate in the first round, or who did but want to revisit their school options — will open in early April. Find more information about Round 2.
Questions? Contact the SchoolChoice Hotline at 720-423-3493, email schoolchoice@dpsk12.org, or visit schoolchoice.dpsk12.org. You can also contact your school directly.
A Look at the Future Montbello High School
After almost two years of collecting input from more than 1,300 community members, we’re excited to share the design concepts for the new Montbello High School. Construction will begin on the future home of the Warriors this summer and is expected to be completed in 2024. The campus is designed to provide 21st-century learning opportunities in a welcoming space with a nod to Montbello’s deep and rich history.
Thank you, Denver voters, for approving the bond funds to make this possible. Follow along here for evolving design details and more updates as construction begins this summer!
CNN Video Feature: How DPS is Focusing on Students’ Mental Health
Amid the pandemic, DPS has implemented a new districtwide requirement of devoting 20 minutes a day to help students develop social and emotional skills. These 20-minute social-emotional learning exercises are adapted to help students learn and retain new skills based on their grade level and age group, which allow them time each day to connect with each other.
Watch CNN’s video feature to learn more.
Watch the Video Feature
The Colorado Sun: DPS Students Train to Become EMTs
Denver South High School and Denver Health have teamed up to expose 55 students to careers in emergency medicine as the pandemic drains hospital resources.
The school acts as a satellite location of Denver Health’s paramedic school, preparing students to respond to moments of peril and ultimately save lives. Piquing students’ interest in emergency medical roles has become more critical during the pandemic, especially in recent months as Colorado’s hospitals have struggled to keep up with the pace of COVID patients and those needing emergency medical attention for accidents and other diseases.
Students who complete medical health sciences courses don’t have to take any other EMT classes on the path to certification, giving them a head start. As soon as they turn 18, they can take the skills they’ve gained in high school and apply them to a practicum assessment at Denver Health.
Learn more in this story by The Colorado Sun.
Read the Colorado Sun Story
Support DPS with Reviewing Applications for New Schools this Spring
DPS is looking for parents and community members to review applications from new district-run and charter schools this March and April. To determine whether those schools could be high-quality options for students, DPS welcomes the perspectives of parents and community members. Participants will receive remote training and support, and no experience is required. Apply for the Application Review Team by completing the interest form.
Students Can Apply Now for the DSF Scholarship Application
The Denver Scholarship Foundation’s (DSF) scholarship application for the 2022-23 academic year is now open and accessible via the DSF Student Portal! DSF offers need-based scholarships to qualifying graduates of DPS.
The scholarship can be used at DSF’s college partners in Colorado, including technical, community, and four-year colleges and universities. Students must enroll full-time. The scholarship is renewable for up to four years depending on the type of college students attend. There is no essay requirement and the application takes less than 20 minutes to complete! Learn more about eligibility requirements and apply here by May 1.
Join Feb. 23 MLE DAC Virtual Meeting
Families of multilingual students are invited to join DPS for a Multilingual Education (MLE) Districtwide Advisory Committee (DAC) meeting at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 23
At this meeting, families will learn more about: Healthy Start Times Phase 2Declining Enrollment updateSocial-Emotional support opportunities
Register here and join the meeting via Zoom. For more information, visit the MLE DAC website or call 720-423-2040.
Lunchtime Learning Webinar Series: Strategies for Supporting Youth Impacted by Trauma
As part of their Lunchtime Learning Webinar Series, the DPS Prevention Services Team is hosting a Strategies for Supporting Youth Impacted by Trauma webinar at noon on March 3. Grab your lunch and join the DPS Trauma-Informed Practices Team as they provide information on the effects that trauma has on youth. The Trauma-Informed Team trains DPS schools on how to adopt trauma-informed practices, which help the community recognize the impact of trauma, and implement changes to help students build healthy relationships that make them feel safe to learn and grow. 
During the webinar, the panel of experts will provide attendees with information about recognizing childhood trauma, the impacts that trauma has on students and strategies parents can use to support their children such as how to advocate for your child at school. Register for the webinar