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A Celebration of Teaching

​The Cherry Creek School District has an outstanding teaching staff; 99 percent are Highly Qualified under the No Child Left Behind Act. The district has the third most National Board Certified teachers in the state. In addition, Cherry Creek Schools has a nationally recognized program to support new teachers – the S.T.A.R. Mentor program.

The S.T.A.R. Mentor program is a partnership between the Cherry Creek Education Association and Cherry Creek Schools. Founded in 1994, S.T.A.R. stands for Staff Training Assistance and Renewal. S.T.A.R. Mentors are master teachers with years of classroom experience and proven success with students. They accept a three-year assignment to work with Cherry Creek teachers who are new to the profession or the district, and help them develop effective instructional techniques and classroom management skills.

STAR Mentors
Host Teachers


The program also uses host teachers – other experienced educators – who open their classrooms to new teachers, who then have the opportunity to learn by observing quality instruction in action.

“Host teachers allow new teachers to observe them and ask questions,” said Jana Frieler, director of Professional Learning for Cherry Creek Schools. “They also share resources and materials with the new teachers.  They are a key component to the success of the program.”

First Year Teachers


“It was the best thing I could have had as a first year teacher,” said Samantha Kauffman, a teacher at Sky Vista Middle School. “I’m definitely a better teacher because of it.”

“It was a life-saver,” said Shasta Johnson, who teaches at Thunder Ridge Middle School. “I could take a breath, talk with my mentor. It validated what I was experiencing.”

The Cherry Creek School District held a Celebration of Teaching on April 29 to honor the district’s first year teachers, host teachers and S.T.A. R. Mentors.

Dr. Harry Bull, superintendent of Cherry Creek Schools, thanked the mentors and host teachers for sharing the wisdom and perspective they’ve gained over the years. Then he congratulated the first year teachers for successfully completing their inaugural year in one of the most challenging and rewarding professions in the world.

Posted 5/9/2014 4:14 PM
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Cherry Creek School District No. 5 does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability in admission to its programs, services or activities, in access to them, in treatment of individuals, or in any aspect of their operations. The lack of English language skills shall not be a barrier to admission or participation in the district’s activities and programs. The Cherry Creek School District No. 5 also does not discriminate in its hiring or employment practices. This notice is provided as required by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Questions, complaints, or requests for additional information regarding these laws may be forwarded to the designated compliance officer: District Compliance Officer or directly to the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, Region VIII, Federal Office Building 1244 North Speer Blvd., Suite #310, Denver, CO 80204.

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