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Our Principal

Updates From Our Principal

August, 2018

Dear McElwain Families,

Welcome back to school!  It is with great excitement that we begin the 2018-2019 school year.  There are many wonderful new staff members joining us. Please give a warm welcome to:  Shalya Gonzalez-Kindergarten, Allison Osmus-1st, Jennifer Mendoza-returning to 2nd, Bridget Cooper-moving to 4th, Janette Hansen-4th, Anna Walsh-Learning Services, Liz Sousa-Social Worker, McKenna Henderson- SSN and  Erica Lovfald-SLP. Please make sure to say hello during our Back to School night on August 15th, 5-7pm. The first day of school begins the following day, Wednesday, August 15th at 7:35am. As a reminder, all Wednesday’s are Early Release days with the student day ending at 1:15pm.  This is true for the first day of school as well.

We have so many things to celebrate and look forward to during the upcoming  school year.

One such celebration is that our McElwain school community worked incredibly hard to roll out Restorative Approaches last year.  During this roll out our staff learned about and implemented connection circles, restorative conversations and restorative contracts to build strong classroom communities and help students take stronger ownership of mistakes and learn positive, thoughtful ways to move forward after conflict.  We will continue to deepen this work and help students become restorative role models for one another.

Another success from last year was the expansion of our ELL programming model.   The support the expanded team has added to both our dual language students and newcomers has been significant.  We were able to almost double our ACCESS growth scores! It will continue to be a focus for the upcoming school year.

During the 2017-2018 school year we were also fortunate to be part of a grant partnering us with MSU to create a Family Literacy Program alongside a preschool for those families participating in the program.  This truly amazing program will continue at McElwain and we look forward to new projects and learning that our families will gain.

The last piece of exciting news is that McElwain is part a newly formed partnership with Mile High United Way.  This partnership will bring great opportunities for families to participate in community leadership and become change makers within our school.  More information will be coming, but until that time, know that our goal with this partnership is join forces in order to make our school the best place possible for the children and families we serve.  Together we will build a foundation for all students to become inquiring, knowledgeable and caring people who strive to become high achievers and create a more peaceful world.

This is an important time to highlight the importance of attendance.  Attending school regularly has a huge impact on a student’s academic success starting in kindergarten and continuing through high school.  The district expectation is that students attend at least 95% of the school year. This means missing no more than 9 days for the school year.  We will be monitoring student attendance, but are here to partner and support you. If you run into a situation please reach out.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for the incredible opportunity to lead McElwain and be a part of this wonderful community.


Justina Carney

Principal, McElwain Elementary


Staff - Principal

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Ms. Justina Carney

Dear McElwain Community, I am truly honored and quite fortunate to have the opportunity to serve as the Principal of McElwain Elementary School.  Each child and family member I meet reaffirms my excitement for the... Read More