Greetings Husky Families and Scholars,
I hope you are enjoying the Fall weather in Denver! Here at Hamilton, our scholars have engaged in intentional events to build upon our school culture. Recently, we welcomed Mr. Kwame Alexander, one of the most distinguished authors of young adult literature in our country. Mr. Alexander brought with him a musician, who interpreted his literature through song. Besides Mr. Alexander’s message being incredibly inspirational to our scholars, Mr. Alexander raised student thinking around themes in his novels such as justice, leadership, friendship, and courage. On a personal note, it was truly fun to see our scholars so excited about reading and potentially writing their own novels! We ended Mr. Alexander’s visit by surprising all scholars with a copy of his novel!
Today, I also want to celebrate with our community our progress on the Denver Public Schools’ School Performance Framework. Hamilton moved up a level on the color-coding scale to “approaching” or “yellow.” This progress came in no small part through the incredible dedication of our teachers and staff, as well as the brilliant talents of our scholars and support of our families. Overall, our literacy growth was higher than the State of Colorado’s average, which was a celebration for our school, given our focus on reading and writing. Our English Language Learners’ growth and on-track status also met expectations, representing almost a third of our scholars. We also met expectations with the number of our scholars meeting the benchmark standards in math, science, and literacy, compared to our similar schools.
Of urgent priority to all of us is accelerating our math growth and closing our achievement gaps. While our school maintained “approaching” status with our academic gaps indicator, we must close the achievement gaps with our students of color, students in poverty, and students receiving special education services. Additionally, we are focused as a team on improving our student and parent satisfaction rates, measured on official district surveys in the Spring. These are the critical factors we want to improve with and our incredible scholars as we push towards “Green.”
I hope all of you and your families have a safe and enjoyable Fall Break!
Christian L. Sawyer, Ed.D.
Principal | Hamilton Middle School