Artwork by Ani Ranstrom, 4th Grade 
Liberty Common School  
1725 Sharp Point Drive, Fort Collins, CO 80525
Phone: 970-482-9800 | Fax 970-482-8007 | www.libertycommon.org
Attendance Line: (Please call by 8:30 AM) 970-482-9800 Option 2 
Office Hours:  Monday -  Friday 7:50AM - 4:00 PM
Volume 20, Issue 20
January 23, 2017     
Mark your Calendar 
January 23|Public Information Night, LCS, 6:30 p.m.
January 26|Liberty Lecture Series-Wake Up To Weird, 6:30 p.m., LCHS 
January 27|Chessmates
January 27|Liberty T-shirt 
January 27|5th/6th Grade Science Fair, 3:30-4:00 p.m.
January 27|6th Grade Movie Night, 5-7 p.m.
January 30|Character Assembly, Citizenship|Speakers from Habitat for Humanity, Josh McMullen, Development Director, Alex Statham-Lardner, Volunteer and Youth Engagement Manager.   Learn more about Habitat for Humanity by CLICKING HERE 
February 2|CVC Mtg. 8:00 a.m. 
February 3|Chessmates
February 10|Free Dress Day
February 10|Winter Carnival
February 13-16|Volunteer Appreciation Week
February 17|NO SCHOOL- Professional Development Day
February 20|NO SCHOOL-Presidents' Day
Liberty T-Shirt Days
Jan. 27th
Feb. 24th
March 31st
April 28th
May 19th


News From Bob Schaffer, LCHS Principal
Liberty's High Graduation Rate
By:  Bob Schaffer, LCHS Principal

On Saturday, The Coloradoan newspaper featured a story by reporter Sarah Jane Kyle about graduation rates at high schools within the Poudre School District.  As a PSD-chartered institution, Liberty Common was highlighted for having the district’s highest graduation rate.

  CLICK HERE  to see the story.  The graduation rate is simply a calculation of the number of students who graduate on time.  At Liberty Common last year, that number was 96.8 percent.

From our school’s point of view, the graduation rate is interesting, but hardly the most important statistic.  Obviously, we prefer all our students graduate well prepared to thrive in college. 


Nonetheless, the attention drawn to our school by The Coloradoan sheds more light on key institutional strategies Liberty employs to foster student success.  For example, having a well-sequenced K-12 curriculum provides enormous advantages for Liberty students.


Liberty’s instructors collaborate to achieve tight system-wide alignment and sequencing.  Imagine our kindergarten instructors meeting with high-school anatomy and chemistry instructors and discussing what happens in one another’s classrooms.  This happens regularly, for all grades. 

Our high graduation rate is also of function of the school’s insistence that students must be ready to advance to the next grade before they do.  We reject the common public-school practice (only practiced in America) of “social promotion” – passing kids onward to the next grade while fully knowing they’re not set up for success.

We’ve succeeded in creating a positive culture of learning wherein students themselves, from the very earliest grades, embrace a personal quest for knowledge.  Their academic journeys are ones they understand to be important, and they reinforce this sense of academic seriousness for one another.     
Liberty students study together, quiz one another, and have conversations about what they are learning. They enjoy celebrating achievements together. They’ve turned learning into somewhat of a team sport.

When students fall behind, or need help in overcoming the challenge of a learning disability, Liberty’s “Academic Support Team” professionals surround our students with the guidance, supports, and encouragements needed to close learning gaps.  Students who would likely have fallen through the cracks at other schools, earn diplomas at Liberty.  Quite confidently, Liberty’s AST specialists are easily the best in the education business.

The school’s disciplinary expectations, Dress Code, and character-education strategies develop the proper moral foundation for success.  For example, elementary students are taught to apply the “Foundation Stone” quality of perseverance to their learning.  In high school, they come to understand and internalize the “Capstone Virtue” of fortitude as a driving force behind conquering more difficult academic and life challenges.

Our strategy to sequence classical subjects from kindergarten forward is powerful.  Latin, economics, penmanship, art and music history, literature, grammar, math facts, and other tactics build purposefully over the years allowing our students to graduate with extraordinarily high levels of both automaticity, comprehension, and creativity. 
Finally, and most importantly, the formalized assumptions our school makes about parental engagement in education are paramount.  Few public schools still fully embrace the philosophy that it is the right and responsibility of parents to direct the education and upbringing of their children.  

Taken together, the deliberate strategies Liberty Common School has employed and perfected over the years continues to arm its students with the most potent academic advantages.  They are equipped and empowered to graduate on time from perhaps the state’s most demanding and respected high school. 

Liberty Happenings 
This week is National School Choice Week and tonight is Public- Information Night 

If you know of anyone interested in how charter schools work and the philosophy of Liberty Common School, please urge them to attend a public-information night tonight at 6:30PM at the elementary school.  LCS principal Casey Churchill, will expound on the virtues of school choice, the advantages of the Core Knowledge Sequence, and the history of Liberty Common School in particular. If you know anybody interested in sending their kids to Liberty (either campus), please urge them to attend.  These are informative presentations for all parents wanting to know more about why we teach what we teach, and why we do what we do.  For hopeful families waiting on the Liberty lottery list for any grades K - 11, attending one of these presentations puts you into the "upper tier" of those waiting for the next open-enrollment spot.  

Make sure to come to the Front Office any time this week to pick up your FREE National School Choice Week Scarf.       
LCS Crowns Spelling Bee Winner
Congratulations to Brody Cinabro, 2016-17 Spelling Bee Winner.  Brody won the Spelling Bee by correctly spelling epithet.

Webster Dictionary defines epithet as a characterizing word or phrase accompanying or occurring in place of the name of a person or thing, a disparaging or abusive word or phrase or the part of a taxonomic name identifying a subordinate unit within a genus .
  
Brody now advances to the written Poudre School District competition this Wednesday, January 25th.  Best of luck Brody!

2016-17 Spelling Bee participants, grades 4th-6th.   Each classroom's winner was represented. Congratulations to all who participated.  
Brody Cinabro,   LCS 2016-17 Spelling Bee Winner
Yummy treats await participants and judges. Thanks to Mrs. Jackson, 4th Grade TA, for making the delicious cupcakes.     
6th Grader Wins 4th-8th Grade Geography Bee

Geography Bee Winner: Congratulations to 6th grader Henry Halgren for winning the 4th-8th grade geography bee on Tuesday, January 17th.  Henry sealed his victory in the championship round by correctly identifying Nepal as the home of the Annapurna Massif and its endangered snow leopards.  He will now have the opportunity to test into the statewide bee on March 31st.  8th grader Thomas Hastings took 2nd place, and 5th grader Mark Lunn came in third.  Please congratulate these impressive geographers when you see them! 

 
Dr. Robertson, LCHS History teacher, congratulates Geography Bee Winner, Henry Halgren.     
 
Next Liberty Lecture
The next Liberty Lecture, Wake Up To Weird, is  Thursday, January 26th, 2017 6:30 – 8:00 pm.  America’s best high-school art instructors   Megan Salazar   and   Rex Seiple  walk their audience through the history and elements of contemporary art.  Liberty Lectures are designed for students, parents, grandparents, alumni and all friends of Liberty (both campuses).   It is important for students to see adults  and families gathering and devoting their leisure educational lectures on topics of cultural interest.  Please plan to attend.

 
Winter Carnival-Flannel Fun in February 
Mark your calendar. Winter Carnival is February 10th. This year we are mixing it up and hosting a Flannel Pajama Party. Bust out your best (modest) pajamas, craziest bed head hair and wildest slippers and join us for a fun evening.  Take the night off from cooking, feed the whole family Panino's pizza and grab yourself a drink at the Coffee Barista. You and your whole family can rock out with friends to the live music of Scott Von Bargen. Enjoy familiar favorites like... bounce houses, face painters, popcorn, cotton candy, cake walk, fuse beads, etc. Or try something new like Truth or Dare, Pillowcase Decorating and Races, Bedhead Hair Salon, Minute To Win It or Nerf Balloon Shooting Gallery. No tickets are required thanks to the success of the Fall Festival. This is a great night to visit with our wonderful Liberty community and support our hard working kids. Look for the donation and volunteer Sign Up Genius in next week's Monday Notes. 
 
Attention: Job OpeningLiberty Common High School has announced an open job posting: Technology Assistant.  This full-time position entails assisting with any technological issues. CLICK HERE to view job posting, 
 I t is the time of year when The Board of Directors seeks parental input on your child's educational experience at Liberty.  The Board values your opinion and strives to do its very best to be one of the top schools in Colorado.  This year one survey will be sent to families via email during the week of February 6, 2017.  If you have more than one child attending Liberty,  please complete a survey for each of your students.  Please take a few minutes to fill out these surveys.  If you have any questions, please call the front office at (970)482-9800.  We value your feedback
Many Ways to Support Liberty Common School
Morning Fresh Dairy  Cash for Caps. Caps collected in the Front Office.
Box Tops for Education. Please cut out and check expiration date before turning in at the Front Office. 
Give Your Child the Gift of Time and Energy: Be a Liberty WATCH D.O.G.
WATCHD.O.G.S . (Dads of Great Students) is an innovative father involvement, educational initiative of the National Center for Fathering (see www.fathers.com for more info). It began in 1998 in Springdale, AR and has since grown into a nationally recognized program that has brought hundreds of thousands of fathers and father figures into our nation's classrooms and hallways.  

Liberty Common School's WATCHD.O.G.S. program provides many benefits for our children and our school:
  • Students win because the father and father-figures give their time and energy as a positive role model.
  • Fathers, father-figures and grandfathers get a glimpse of their student's everyday school life.
  • Liberty gains another set of eyes and helping hands for the day.

Become a WATCHD.O.G. today by CLICKING HERE.  Go to School Forms and then  scroll down the page to WATCHD.O.G. registration. 

Already a WATCHDOG? Take a few minutes and Sign-Up. Remember, part-days are also appreciated.

Thank you for wanting to make a difference in the lives of Liberty Common School students.  

 
Board of Directors
Paulette Hansen:  282-8455
Patrick Albright:  232-8257 
Joel Goeltl : 593-8556 
Jeff Webb : 545-9636 
Denise Benz : 420-4184 
Kelly Notarfrancesco:  295-4643
Aislinn Kottwitz : 217-5925

Upcoming Board Meeting- February 16th, LCS 6:00PM


You may contact all members on our Board of Directors at  BOD@libertycommon.org .