November 11, 2022

senior Clay Beyer visits with a very cute visitor in Lu Boren's Veterinary Science class

the winning entry in this week's advisory pancake contest, portraiture category, courtesy of Libby's advisory

Greetings Ospreys,

We hope you had a chance to read Rebecca's Head of School Update, sent out earlier this week, in which she shared several highlights from her first few months at AHS and outlined some key pieces of her vision for where we're heading next as a school, along with updates about our move to the new campus at Fort Lewis College. Rebecca also shared the exciting news that we've received a very generous $100,000 donation to our capital campaign from the Lowell Milken Family Foundation, helping us to offset the costs of our beautiful, sustainably-designed, solar-powered building. These are exciting times to be an Osprey and we're grateful for Rebecca's energetic, wise, can-do leadership!

Many thanks to professional theatre artist Zachary Chiero who visited with Joy Kilpatrick's theatre students this week to help prepare them for their Comedia del Arte performance of the play The Scarlet Heart, coming up December 7 through 9 at the Durango Arts Center. Zachery raved about how “It’s so wonderful to work with a young group of theater artists who have such an interest and passion for the material.” We are so thankful for him sharing his expertise and delightful presence!

With just a week before we head off to Thanksgiving Break and 3 weeks of regularly scheduled classes left in the term, students are gearing up for end-of-semester exhibitions and Presentations of Learning (POLs). We'll share exhibition details as they're finalized; currently, plans are in the works for exhibitions before Winter Break for Humanities 9, Biology, Humanities 10, Geology, Music and Theater. Juniors will exhibit their Chemistry and Humanities 11 projects in the new year in the new building.

Classes continue through December 7, after which we turn our attention to POLs, formal presentations where students reflect on their learning and growth before an audience of peers, teachers and community members. Before POLs, students practice their presentations, focus on specific public-speaking skills, receive feedback from teachers and peers and finally refine and rehearse their POL delivery. Requirements for TPOLs are grade-level specific, but typically include an oral presentation, use of the student’s digital portfolio and evidence or artifacts from their classes. Students who attempt but do not pass POLs are given additional opportunities to present once they have refined their work. POLs are an important piece of an Animas education, and are required for all students.

Ospreys Get a Sneak Peek of Radioactive Performance

Rosie LeCompte '25, Animas Quill

Students got to experience a breathtaking performance of the Half Life Of Marie Curie by Merely Players this week. The incredible two-woman cast shared the inspiring story of Madame Curie and her struggles during the early 1900s including the summer she spent in the company of her dear friend and fellow female scientist Hertha Ayrton.

The show encaptured many powerful themes, ranging from the intricacies of female friendships to the struggles women faced in society and in the sciences in the early 1900s. The characters exemplified the strength and determination that humans must find when faced with overwhelming challenges.

Animas students were truly inspired by the powerful performances that portrayed the complicated lives of these two women. The story felt very relatable and was written in such a way that it felt like a modern take on the untold pieces of Marie Curie’s story. We got to see the emotional realities of these admired figures in a way that made them feel so much more human than learning about them in books and documentaries.

Seeing live theatre was a powerful experience for the Ospreys in attendance, as evidenced by the tears many of us shed by the end. Sophomore Rilee Lytle was in awe of the entire experience, reflecting, “Theatre is great at bringing out the emotions and experiences that are already a part of us.”

Everyone that attended is so grateful that Merley Players provided the opportunity for us to see this show for free especially as the show is sold out. We recommend that you get a spot on the waitlist and try to witness this magnificent piece of art.

"We loved performing today for an outstanding group of students from Animas High School." reported the Merely Players. "They are bright, polite, engaged. Go, Ospreys!"

Upcoming Events

Swing by the home of Osprey Parent Laurie Shepard (mom to Abbey '21) at 237 CR 206 this evening between 4pm and 7pm for the LSDesigns Holiday Blowout, selling her popular designer down jackets at discounted prices, with a percentage going to support AHS. Laurie will be joined by fellow AHS parent artists Val Russel (mom to Porter Hilgenberg '24) who will sell her gorgeous handcrafted Flying Hatter hats, photographer Todd Macon (dad to Mia '24) and chessboard inventor William Holden (dad to Eli '24) of HoldenArt. Stop by to get a jump on your holiday shopping while supporting local artists and our school.

Also tonight, Student Council is hosting the Autumn In-Formal from 5:30 to 7:30pm at AHS. Students are encouraged to bring a dish to share and join in for an evening of movies, games and good old hanging out!

Rising Voices Exhibition: Adolescent Psychology and Storytelling 

Adolescence is all about finding your voice, finding who you are and who you want to become. Our sophomores have spent the first semester in Humanities 10 with Sara Price learning about adolescence, cognitive development and the role of morality in this stage of life. Their goal was to understand why adolescence is such a critical stage of life and what the work of adolescence includes. If the goal of adolescence is to learn how to be adults, it is critical to find your voice in society. Analyzing why stories matter and ultimately writing our own can help us be better understood and assimilated into society. Please join us for the Rising Voices Exhibition on Wednesday November 30 from 5pm to 7pm at AHS to hear the sophomores' stories, have conversations about adolescence and ultimately to find a shared humanity and experience through storytelling. 

TWIGS Family Engagement Updates

The next TWIGS Buds meeting is Monday at 5:30pm at school--all are welcome as we gather to check in on the TWIGS family engagement program, plan for upcoming TWIGS events and begin planning for the end-of-semester Staff Appreciation Lunch, which will take place on Thursday, December 15.

Great news on our progress towards meeting the $150,000 goal for AHS family contributions to the capital campaign--we're 96% there, with just a bit more to go. If you haven't donated to our new school yet, please consider showing your support. Donations come in all sizes, and we appreciate every single one. Donate to the capital campaign here.

Don't forget--we'll discuss Johann Hari's book Stolen Focus at the next TWIGS Happy Hour on Wednesday, November 30, which will be at Zia Taqueria North's upstairs cantina.

Project Osprey Holiday Gift Drive

Seniors have been studying income inequality this semester, with an emphasis on housing and education, and have now turned their attention to group projects. Sidney, Jaida, Alexis, Jamie, Ella, Aspen, Kade and Abby would like to invite the community to join them in helping make a positive impact through Project Osprey, a holiday gift drave in partnership with Community Compassion Outreach, a local nonprofit dedicated to assisting individuals and families facing poverty and homelessness.

Inspired by Project Merry Christmas, which has disbanded locally, the seniors have set up a tree in the main office with paper ornaments describing items local families in need have requested. Please select an ornament, let Bridget or whomever is staffing the front desk know which one you've taken, shop for your gift item(s) and then bring them back in no later than December 7. The seniors will do the gift wrapping and delivery. Donations of canned goods welcome, too.

Enrollment Updates

AHS enrolls new transfer students at the start of 2nd semester, provided there is space available. Currently, we have just 2 open seats in our 9th grade and are full in 10th and 11th grades. If your AHS student is considering transferring to a different school for 2nd semester, please email our dean of enrollment and community outreach, Libby Cowles at We appreciate early communication, as it lets us know if we will have seats open up for those on our waitlists.

Enrollment for fall 2023 opens January 2. On that date, we post the Fall 2023 Intent to Enroll Form on the enrollment page of the AHS website. We will run the enrollment lottery on March 6. We will offer weekly tours and online information sessions for prospective students and families beginning in mid-January; dates and times for all enrollment events are listed on the events calendar on our website.

Current AHS students are guaranteed a seat to return for the following year and do not need to complete the Fall 2023 Intent to Enroll form. We will send information about re-registration for the 23/24 school year to current families in February.

Finally, we'd love to invite you to think about AHS teachers, staff and supporters who you might want to nominate for the Colorado League of Charter Schools' Charter School Hall of Fame. We are so fortunate to have a team of talented educators at the Nest, and know many are worthy of this honor. Deadline to nominate is December 15.

Have a great weekend and thanks for all you do to help the Ospreys soar!

Upcoming Events

LSDesigns Holiday Blowout: Fri. 11/11 4-7pm, 237 CR 206

StuCo Presents AHS Autumn In-Formal: Fri. 11/11 5:30-7:30pm at AHS

TWIGS Buds Meeting: Mon. 11/14, 5:30pm at AHS

AHS Board Meeting: Thurs. 11/17, 530pm via

School Excellence Committee Meeting: Fri. 11/18, 11:45am via

Thanksgiving Break (no classes): Mon. 11/21 through Fri. 11/25

Professional Development Day (no classes): Mon. 11/ 28

Sophomore Humanities Exhibition: Rising Voices: Wed. 11/30, 5-7pm at AHS

Online Community Conversation about Move to FLC: Thurs. 12/1, 5pm via

TWIGS Happy Hour: Wed. 11/30, 6pm at Zia Taqueria Cantina, North Main Ave--discussion of Johann Hari's Stolen Focus

Project Osprey Gift Drive Deadline: Wed. 12/7

Last Day of Regular Classes: Wed. 12/7

Presentations of Learning Preparation (special schedule): Thurs. 12/8 and Fri. 12/9

Osprey Theatre Company presents The Scarlet Heart: Fri. 12/9 through Sun. 12/11 at Durango Arts Center

iAM Music Student Showcase: Sun. 12/11 at Animas City Theater

Presentations of Learning (student schedules will vary): Mon. 12/12 through Thurs. 12/15

Staff Appreciation Lunch: Thurs. 12/15

Last Day of Fall Semester (and move-in date for new AHS campus!): Fri. 12/16

Winter Break: Mon. 12/19 through Fri. 12/30

Professional Development Day: Mon. 1/2

2nd Semester Begins: Tues. 1/3

AHS Events Calendar
AHS 2022/23 School Calendar
TWIGS Website
Donate Now to Our New Building Campaign!
Animas High School prepares all students for college and postsecondary success by creating critical thinkers and engaged citizens through an innovative, student-centered, project-based curriculum. We accomplish this through:
Rigorous academics, where all students are prepared for college success
Culture of excellence, where students are held to high expectations
Strong student-faculty relationships, where students are well known.
Engaging learning, where students see the relevance in their education

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