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Principal's Message

EMS 3/3/2023

Dear Escalante Middle School Community,

While I certainly appreciate all of the snowfall this winter, we do need to make up student contact time as a result of the many snow days. Our school board will soon be reviewing the following recommendations based on community and staff surveys.
1. Make April 24 a student day
2. Cancel early release from April 10 to the end of the year,(cancel more if we have a delay)
3. Add 8 minutes to each school day starting March 6 (if 7 snow days)
4. Make May 26 a student day (if 8 snow days)
5. Add days to the calendar (if 9 snow days and beyond)
6. Also amend next year’s calendar to add 5 make-up days at end of the year, if needed

You can see the survey data and information about snow days by following this link. We will certainly share out when the board makes its final decision.

Last week, I gave a survey to our 7th-grade class that really illuminates what it is like to be in middle school. Students were given three questions, and they could write up to three responses for each of the following questions.

See the link below to read the entire newsletter in English and Spanish. En el siguiente enlace podrá leer el boletín completo en inglés y español.
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Principal's Message

EMS 1/13/2023 Community News

Dear Escalante Middle School Community,

In September I had the opportunity to attend a national education conference in Houston to learn about new trends, opportunities, and technologies impacting the educational landscape nationally. The closing conference honed in on technology, specifically artificial intelligence and predictive analytics known as GPT-3 software that was on the horizon.

If you aren’t aware yet of what GPT-3 is, I’m sure you will be soon. It is a fascinating Google Search if you’d like to investigate on your own, or you can read more about it in Willemena Kwapo’s EdWeek article titled “This Technology Can Write Student Essays: Is There Any Educational Benefit?”
The bottom line is that GPT-3 software creates original text and does the thinking and writing for the consumer. Here is an excerpt from Kwapo’s article:

“I then directed it to “write an analysis essay about Romeo and Juliet.” It returned a simple four-paragraph essay about the story. The essay is clear and concise, and it does read like something a human—possibly a student—would produce. It returned a complete paragraph that consisted of no glaring errors.”

The implications of this software are pretty massive. A recent Atlantic article asked the question. “Is the College Essay Dead?” and schools will need to adjust very soon as a growing number of students are already using GPT-3.

While GPT-3 is just now starting to impact how we assign and evaluate student work, we have yet to fully understand the ramifications on learning. However, there are other aspects of technology advances that we know are having excessively damaging results. It is absolutely essential that we talk to our kids again and again about two important messages.

Never send an image to anyone else under any circumstances that show you naked or partially naked.
If you take a photo or video of someone being harassed, picked on, or embarrassed, do not forward it around on social media. This is textbook cyberbullying and causes the victim of the event to relive the trauma again and again. Moreover, please talk to your child about the character flaws inherent in the person who snapped that photo and video instead of helping out. We need to train and teach our kids to be upstanders and stand up for people, rather than documenters intent on producing content for YouTube, Snapchat, and Tik Tok that embarrasses others at best or causes them to relive their trauma again and again at worst.

Thank you for your support and efforts to help our kids navigate new technologies that are being produced so rapidly. Through proactive conversations, I am sure that we can raise a generation of kids who will still do the right thing, even when it’s the hard thing.

Jeremy Voss
EMS, Principal

See below for link to read the whole newsletter
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Principal's Message

EMS 9/9/2022 Community News

Dear EMS Community,

Next week we will have our first School Accountability Meeting (SAC) and Escalante Parent Organization (EPO) meeting of the 22-23 school year. We will meet at 9:00am on September 15th for SAC, with EPO agenda items following our SAC agenda.

At the meeting, we will review and take feedback about parent survey information from the 22-23 school year, CMAS state assessment data, and our school’s strategic work plan. All families and community members are welcome to attend, and many thanks to Veronica Piccoli for chairing out parent committees this year.
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Principal's Message

Check-in for the 2022/23 School Year!

All students preparing to attend Escalante Middle School in the fall for the 2022/23 school year are invited to attend Fall Check-In. Please be sure that your online registration is completed prior to August 1st to ensure you receive all notifications for your check-in nights for the new school year. Online registration can be found in your Infinite Campus parent portal account. Families will receive an email announcing what team their students are on by August 12th. Check-in nights are as follows.

August 16th
Ocelots 5:00 PM
Falcons 6:00 PM

August 17th
White Tigers 5:00 PM
Timberwolves 6:00 PM

August 18th
Taz 5:00 PM
Panthers 6:00 PM

Please call the office if you have any questions 970-247-9490. The office will be closed from June 10 to August 1 for summer break.
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Principal's Message

4/22/2022 Community News

Dear Escalante Middle School Community,

In the aftermath of the COVID pandemic, we are working very hard to bring back the traditions, experiences, and structures that we canceled over the last two years. Our largest event of the year, the Celebration of Learning (COL), will take place on June 1st from 4:00 to 5:30 PM at EMS. Every student will be showcasing an aspect of high quality work as we turn our hallways and classrooms into an interactive museum cataloging the highlights of the year across all classes. Please save this date to come and celebrate student learning. Parent and community participation is vital because it provides our students with an authentic audience to practice their presentation and public speaking skills. Students will be learning their specific role in the event sometime over the next several days.
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News & Announcements

March 14th is EMS Picture Day!

Escalante Middle School is excited to host Allison Ragsdale Photography on March 14th. All students will have their picture taken for School ID purposes. Purchasing pictures is not required, but if you would like to order pictures, see the flyer below or visit https://allisonragsdalephotography.com and click on "School Photos". Please remember, students are not allowed to wear hats or sunglasses in the photos. SMILE! It's Picture Day!

Retakes are scheduled for April 4th.

Eagle Track & Field Information

The Eagle Track and Field season kicks off Tuesday, March 14th after school and will run through Friday, May 5th. To be eligible to participate, students need to complete the registration checklist (see below) and bring running shoes, a water bottle, and clothes for the various spring weather conditions. We recommend layers and a warm hat.

Home Event Help:
We have one large home event which is an invitational track meet on Saturday, 4/8/23. To make these run smoothly we need parent volunteers. Please let us know if you are willing to help out. We always need timers and people to work field events. We can definitely put you in the event your athlete is participating in.

Questions? Contact Coach John Hise at [email protected] or Athletic Director Eva Duce at [email protected]

Week 1 Schedule:
Tuesday, 3/14: 3:30 - 5:30 PM
Wednesday, 3/15: 3:30 - 5:15 PM
Thursday, 3/16: 3:30 - 5:30 PM
Friday, 3/17: No Practice - Happy Spring Break!

Eagle Wrestling 2023



EMS Wrestling Week of 02/20/2023

Hello EMS families!

Just a reminder that TOMORROW WE HAVE TEAM PICTURES! Please refer to the previous email in this thread for details from the last update.

We had great contributions from the Calendar Fundraiser! We had quite a few turned in and quite a few that were not. If your wrestler participated in the fundraiser but did not turn it in last Friday, tomorrow will be a make-up day, and the final day to draw a winner for them.

As a reminder, if you have Facebook and have not yet joined the Escalante Middle School Wrestling Group, be sure to do so! We have the schedule of Tris and Tournaments pinned, as well as sharing other great info, photos, and videos.

As always, please reach out if you have any questions or concerns.

Thank you!
Coach Silva

Our Eagle Wrestling season kicks off Wednesday, January 25th after school and will run through the league championship held at Escalante on Saturday, March 11th. To be eligible to participate, students need to complete the registration checklist linked below. For more information click the information page below.

District announces Snow Day Make-Up plan

Due to the number of Snow Day school closures this winter, Durango School District 9-R has announced a plan to make up school days in the remainder of the 2022/23 school year.

Required and Recommended Vaccines for the 23-24 School Year

Dear parents/guardians of students in Colorado kindergarten – 12th grade schools for the 2023-24 school year:

We know you’re thinking of all the things you need to do to make sure your student is ready for school. Getting vaccinated is an important part of their school readiness and keeps children from catching and spreading diseases that can make them sick and potentially disrupt in-person learning.

Durango School District Announces Hiring Bonus

Durango School District 9-R announces a hiring bonus for newly hired staff who begin an Educational Support Professional, Student Service Provider, Licensed Staff, Administrator, or Managerial Technical position with us in the time frame of January 1, 2023 to March 17, 2023.


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