Monthly Parent Newsletter

December 2023

Dear Families,

Winter break is soon upon us.  Our last day before break is Thursday, December 22nd.  There is No School on Friday, December 23rd.  Students return to school on Tuesday, January 10th.  I hope you are able to use this time to reconnect as a family and be reminded of what is important to all of us.  Hopefully you and your children can spend time relaxing and playing together – family time is incredibly valuable and a critical part of a child’s development. 

I also hope our teachers are able to relax and connect with friends and family.  Our staff works so hard with your children each and every day, and these breaks are an important time for everyone to rejuvenate.

Enjoy the winter break!  We look forward to seeing you back on January 10th!

In Partnership,

Lisa Morris


NEW School Choice Application Process

Cherry Creek School District is implementing a NEW School Choice application system and updated policies.  The new application system will be used for all choice applications, including Non-Resident and Intra-District Transfer requests. Parents will be able to submit a School Choice application for the 2023-2024 school year starting January 1, 2023. This date applies for residents and non-residents of the school district and the first lottery run in early February for district residents, non-resident employees’ children and for students that are currently enrolled as a non-resident or on a 1 year Intra-District transfer. All other applications will be included in bi-weekly lottery runs starting in February.  Students who are accepted to a choice school will be accepted to the highest grade level at that school provided they meet the continued enrollment criteria. Additional details about School Choice and the continued enrollment criteria can be found in the School Choice Transfers section of the Admissions website:


Cherry Creek Schools Foundation - Educator Initiative Grant

Congratulations to our teachers who were awarded grants through the Cherry Creek Schools Foundation to support their work with students at Independence.  Our art teacher, Ms. Kathryn Haessner won her grant for Fun with Fabrics.

Our School Social Worker, Ms. Laura Mitchell, Speech Language Pathologist, Ms. Jenn Mahoney and Classroom Teacher Ms. Gonzales won a grant to support their student leadership group called YELL (Youth Equity Learners and Leaders).  

Teacher of the Year

Cherry Creek School District has asked all schools to participate in a process for nominating the 2022-2023 Educator of the Year. You are invited to nominate an exceptional educator who represents Cherry Creek’s Mission – “To inspire students to think, to learn, to achieve, to care,” and the District’s Core Values: Growth Mindset, Equity, Whole Wellbeing, Engagement, and Relationships.

All teachers, special service providers (i.e. psychologists, social workers, nurses, therapists, etc.) and non-teaching licensed personnel (i.e. instructional coaches, etc.) are eligible to be nominated. The written nomination should be between 150-500 words, and describe how the nominee exhibits and/or embodies our mission and core values.

Select the link below if you would like to nominate someone from Independence Elementary.  The nomination window will be open until January 13th.


Voices of Independence

Here is the 4th episode of The Voices of Independence, our Independence news show.

Such a creative and enthusiastic group of students!


PTCO Survey - Community Garden

A PTCO member is wanting to see if there’s interest in starting a community garden. Below is a link that you can complete if you have interest in volunteering, donating, or helping with a garden.

Public Survey

Family Resources

Please see attached flyer for additional resources for families.

Holiday Gift Support

Dear Independence Families,

We are happy to continue to support our community through different programs such as: Blessings in Backpacks, weekly food backpacks, the marketplace, clothing, etc.

There are many programs for holiday gifts in the Denver metro area, if you are interested, you can visit these sites and see if there are places that are a fit for your family. Many programs ask that you register in advance. Take care!

Free Holiday Gifts - Denver

Area - Many sites listed.

Register for Holiday Meals -November and December.

Register for gift assistance.


Congratulations to our 2022 Turkey Trot winners:

Parents/Teachers/Staff Winner: Michelle Schuldt

KG/1st grade winner: Maya Basting

2nd/3rd grade winner: Kelly Nepal

4th/5th grade winner: Bentley Stegeman

Thank you to all the students, families, and staff members who participated and volunteered to help with our annual event. Special thanks to our wonderful PTCO for supplying the frozen turkeys to give away as prizes.


Before and After CareDid you know we have a before and after care program? If you are looking for child care, please visit their website at or contact the Director, Scott Sage at 720-886-8280 or email

YearbooksPurchase your 2022-2023 School Yearbook now! If you buy before March 18th they are only $15!



File attachments:Family Resource Booklet.pdf