Park Hill Elementary FAQS
Bell times, drop off and pick up information
What are the bell times and when can I drop off and pick up my student?
The school day begins at 8:10 a.m. for all students. Students’ arrival time is between 7:55 am and 8:10 am. We are implementing a rolling start for 8:10 am - 8:15 am, and your child is not late through 8:15 am. Please do not drop your child off alone prior to 7:55 am as there is no supervision outside.
If your child desires breakfast, the cafeteria opens at 7:45 am. Students are expected to arrive at school on time. Late arrival is an interruption to those already engaged in learning activities and results in a loss of instruction time for the tardy student. Students arriving after 8:15 am must report to the office to obtain a tardy slip before going to class.
Please note: All outside games (i.e. 4-square, gaga ball) will cease between the times of 8:00 – 8:10 am, and 3:10 – 3:20 pm. This is for the safety of all students and family members.
School is dismissed at 3:10 pm. Park Hill staff will remain on duty until 3:20 pm. All students must be picked up or on a bus by 3:20 pm. Any students not accounted for after 3:20 pm. will be brought to the office to remain under supervision until picked up by an approved adult. Students will NOT be allowed to remain on the playground after 3:20 pm if they are not accounted for and supervised by an adult.
Where do I drop off and pick up my student?
In the mornings, students may be dropped off on the school-side of Elm and Fairfax streets. We do not want students crossing the streets during drop-off unless with a parent and/or at a crosswalk. Elm Street is on the West side of the school, and is one-way North. Fairfax Street is on the East side of the school.
We ask that parents do not park on Elm and Fairfax during drop-off and pick-up. We intend for these streets to strictly be for a safe drop-off and loading zone. Please park on the side streets and walk using crosswalks and designated areas.
19th Avenue is on the North side of the school. The school-side of 19th Avenue is used strictly for bus drop-off and loading between the hours of 7:00 am – 8:30 am and 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm, respectively. Please do NOT park or drop-off on the school-side of 19th during these times, at the risk of being ticketed by DPD. You can park here between the times of 8:30 am – 2:00 pm. Please pay attention to ALL city parking signs. These are enforced by DPD, not by the school or DPS.
Please be respectful of our neighbors and practice safe driving techniques! Do not block driveways, alleys, or fire hydrants. Drive slowly through the neighborhood and obey all traffic signage, crosswalks, and be watchful for little ones!
How do I pick up my student early?
If it is necessary to pick up your child early, please come to the front doors on 19th Avenue and ring the door buzzer. The office staff will get your child and bring him/her to the front door. Thus, please plan ahead and allow for a 10 minute window of time as children can be on the playground or at specials and can take a few minutes to gather their belongings. This procedure is followed to protect your child and to hold classroom interruptions to a minimum. Due to the busy nature of a school day, we will not release a student between 2:55 pm - 3:10 pm. A child will not be released to anyone who is not on the student’s records or to anyone under 18 years of age, unless the school’s office has been notified in writing or by phone by the parent. It is not necessary to call ahead before you pick up your child. We cannot accommodate phone call requests for pick-ups.
How do I drop off my student if we are late to school?
Students arriving after 8:15 am should come to the front of the school at 19th Ave and ring the buzzer. They should report to the office before going to class or a staff member will meet younger students at the door to walk them to class. Staff members can take hot-lunch orders at that time and make sure that students get to wherever their class is currently in the building or school grounds.
Can my student ride their bike to school?
We love to see our students ride their bikes or scooters to school. The school has ample places to park these items on both the east and west side of the school. We strongly encourage the use of locks to deter thefts.
Do I need to walk my student to their class in the morning?
Park Hill has a 'Kiss & Drop Lane' available each morning on Elm Street between 18th and 19th Ave
The procedure is as follows:
The Kiss & Drop Lane will be available every morning from 7:55 am – 8:10 am.
All traffic flow is ONE WAY on Elm , do not turn around, back up, park or pass cars in the drop off lane.
If your child is unable to exit your car independently, please park in the appropriate areas on Elm or Fairfax and escort your child – using crosswalks – to the playground gate or arch entrances.
Stay in the right hand lane advancing as far forward as possible before stopping to drop off your child.
Park Hill staff, elder students and/or parent volunteers will be there to guide you and to help students out of the car and moving safely towards the entrance of the playground and into Kindergarten classrooms.
All students in the drop off area must exit the cars on the curb side of the car only.
Parents CANNOT exit the car to help children. Staff, students, and/or volunteers will be on hand to help. Traffic must keep moving.
Please stay in line behind the car in front of you. Do not pull around a car ahead of you.
Do not stop in the middle of the street or ‘double park’ to let your child out of the car.
Students are not allowed to take shortcuts through the cars parked in the drop off lane. Parents should always model safety by properly using the crosswalk.
Follow all directions given by the adult volunteer at the crosswalk.
After 8:15 am parents must park and bring children into the school. The Kiss & Drop Lane will be closed. The tardy bell rings at 8:15 am, and you must ring the bell at the front door after that time.
The Kiss & Drop Lane is NOT operational at dismissal.
Attendance and absences
What is the attendance policy?
In order for students to receive the full benefit of their Park Hill education, daily attendance is the first and most important step. The school calendar is published and distributed before the commencement of the school year and parents are asked to schedule any travel within the dates that classes are not in session. Park Hill has an attendance and tardy policy in accordance with the Colorado School Attendance Law and Denver Public Schools’ “Denver Plan.” These guidelines allow for roughly 10 absences during the course of a school year. Every month the school psychologist reviews student attendance and sends letters to parents for those students whose absences are excessive. The definition of “excessive” changes throughout the school year based on the number of school days but parents can expect to receive the first communication after 5 absences or 5 unexcused tardies.
How do I report an absence
Please notify the school if your child will be absent or tardy by phoning the school attendance line at (720)424-4910 or using the absence reporting link on the main menu of the website. This should be done for each day a child will be absent.
Enrollment and Registration Process
How do I get my child signed up and registered for school next year?
For students planning to start during the upcoming school year, the normal process is for schools to begin pre-enrolling students in mid-December of the preceding year. The pre-enrollment process helps to create a profile for your student in the DPS system. Families are encouraged to pre-enroll with their neighborhood school. DPS has developed a website to help families locate their neighborhood school using the DPS school finder. In order to begin the pre-enrollment process you will be asked to complete a pre-enrollment worksheet, Home Language Questionnaire, and provide proof of your child's age, address, and family income (for ECE students only).
Please send completed forms and associated documents to Ann Kurth, email@example.com or drop off during school hours.
DPS accepts the following documents:
Proof of Age: Birth certificate; baptismal record; hospital record with official signature; passport or I-94.
Proof of Address: Current utility bill with service address; Valid rental/lease agreement; Warranty deed; Current mortgage statement; Property tax notice; or Signed contract stating your name, closing date and property address.
Proof of Income (for each working adult in the household - only required for ECE students): 30 consecutive days of paycheck stubs; (most recent) W-2; or letter from employer on company letterhead that states hours worked and pay rate. If applicable, proof of non-work income (TANF, food stamps, child support, etc).
Families that are pre-enrolled receive a student ID number which they can use to access the School Choice website during the school choice window starting in mid-January.
School Choice & UPK
The School Choice process generally begins in January. Families can rank their preferred schools for their children to attend. If Park Hill is your DPS Neighborhood School and you pick Park Hill Elementary as your school, you are guaranteed a position at Park Hill in the fall. Families that elect to Choice elsewhere, but then decide that they would like to return to Park Hill later in the Choice process or during the school year are not guaranteed a position and could be placed on a waitlist for that school year. Families are generally notified by schools of their acceptance in March. Families that are unhappy with their initial school choices can participate in a second round of School Choice in April.
The ECE-4 Enrollment process is now managed by the Colorado Department of Early Childhood (CDEC) and DPS. ECE-4 families go through the UPK enrollment process to match their child with a preschool. Families will need to complete a Universal Pre-K (UPK) application on the UPK website starting (usually starting in mid-January) - https://cdec.colorado.gov/colorado-universal-preschool and closes in February. ECE-4 applications will NOT run through the DPS lottery system. An application through the DPS SchoolChoice system is also required - https://schoolchoice.dpsk12.org/. If your student will be new to DPS, please complete the pre-enrollment process.
Once a family is enrolled — or accepted — into a DPS school, the next step is registering with their school. This is the annual process of providing and updating student and family information on file, including emergency contacts, health information and more. Park Hill offers Early Bird Registration in May and then once again in late July before school starts.
To register online, sign in to Parent Portal, click on “See All Apps,” then click on “Online Registration” to verify or update your student’s information. Online registration can only be completed by the parent/guardian listed in the primary household of the student record.
If you don’t have a Parent Portal account you will need to go to the Parent Portal website and create a new account using your child's student ID number. Please note - the Parent Portal login is different from the School Choice login. Please contact the office if you don't know your child's student ID number.
We just moved into the neighborhood...how do we enroll and register now?
Please call the office at (720)424-4910, and we will help you get enrolled and registered. You will be asked to provide much of the documentation mentioned in the section above.
Early Childhood Education (ECE) program
What ECE programs are available at Park Hill?
For the 2023-24 school year, Park Hill offers an ECE for 4 year olds program. We do not have an ECE program for 3 year old due to space limitations. The ECE-4 program is a full day (8:10 am - 3:10 pm). We have a limited number of spots available in the one ECE-4 classroom. In 2023 we were able to offer 18 spots. The UPK criteria prioritized students with siblings at Park Hill as the top priority.
More information about the ECE program can be found on the ECE website:
Applications for the program should be made through the state of Colorado Universal Pre-K website and through DPS SchoolChoice which typically open in mid-January prior to the beginning of the school year. See the Enrollment section above for more detail on how to pre-enroll with Park Hill and details on the enrollment process.
Please note: ECE-4 students are not eligible for before/after-hours childcare, after-school Enrichments or DPS Transportation (if less than 5 years of age). Students who may be eligible for school bus services based on their distance from the school would need to contact DPS transportation to confirm eligibility.
Health policies, health forms, nursing services
What is the sick policy?
Park Hill School wishes to protect the health and well-being of all of our students and staff. Please know that there are students and staff at Park Hill with compromised immune systems and various other medical conditions, and we all need to do our part to help protect our community.
Students who have been recently ill need to be symptom free for 24 hours before returning to school. Students who are sent home for illness during the school day will therefore need to miss the next day to recover from any illnesses. Please take this into account when deciding whether to send your child to school in the morning.
Please do not give your child any medications prior to sending them to school to mask illness symptoms, such as Tylenol or Ibuprofen. Please contact the school nurse if you have any questions.
My child needs to take medications at school. What do I do?
DPS does not allow administration of medication at school without the completion of the following forms. Please have your Pediatrician's office complete the form in advance of dropping off medications. All forms must be signed by both the parent and Provider.
Asthma: If our child has asthma, please have your Pediatrician complete the following form along with parent/guardian signature: Asthma Action Plan.
Seizure: If your child experiences seizures, please have your Pediatrician complete the following form along with parent/guardian signature: Seizure Action Plan.
Allergy or Anaphylaxis: If your child has allergies or anaphylactic reactions, please have your Pediatrician complete the following form along with parent/guardian signature: Allergy Action Plan.
General Medication Form: For all other medications, please have your Pediatrician complete the following form along with parent/guardian signature: Medication Administration Form.
What health services are available at Park Hill?
Park Hill has a registered nurse at the school daily. Additionally, staff in the office have been trained as health aides to assist the nurse and students during the day as well as when the nurse is away from the school. Our staff has been trained to provide basic first aid, administer medications, educated on signs of illness and injury and many other health related items specific to our student population. If you have questions or specific needs, we encourage you to reach out to our nurse before the school year starts.
Wendy Harper (Nurse): Wendy_Harper@dpsk12.net
What is the vaccine policy?
New families are required to provide Immunization information during the Registration process. Please contact your Pediatrician for current Immunization records. If you would like to provide a copy to the school nurse instead of uploading them or if you have questions, please contact our school nurse Wendy_Harper@dpsk12.net.
Colorado law requires all students attending Colorado schools and licensed child cares to be vaccinated against certain diseases unless they have a certificate of medical or nonmedical exemption on file. To protect unvaccinated children, students with an exemption from one or more required vaccines may be kept out of a school or child care during a disease outbreak.
Below are 2 ways to submit an exemption:
1. Vaccine exemption form (physician signature required).
2. Take Online education module for exemption (no physician signature required)
How do we find out about snow days or other inclement weather conditions?
The district decides if school's will have late start or cancellations. They will send out communication (text/emails/voicemails) in the event of a schedule changes. Families can call (720)423-3200 for updates on inclement weather.
REMINDER: The decision to keep schools open or to close them during winter-weather conditions is made with one overriding factor in mind: the well-being of our students and their families. Schools are not only vital places of learning for students, but they also provide nutrition, health care, counseling and support services. Whenever possible, DPS strives to keep schools open during extreme weather conditions.
During winter-weather conditions, transportation will monitor weather, roads and CDOT’s street-status for travel by buses and DPS families. Transportation will also be in close communication with maintenance staff members to clear snow and ice at each school site and bus stop areas at schools.
As a reminder, weather and street conditions can vary greatly within the boundaries of Denver. Detailed DPS winter weather and snow day information, including information on how families can find out if school is closed, can be found on the DPS website.
What age should my student be to start Kindergarten
Eligible children must be 5 years old by October 1 of the school year they will attend.
What should I work on with my child to help them be prepared for Kindergarten?
Below, we have outlined the criteria for Kindergarten Readiness in the Denver Public Schools. Please note that we do not expect every student to come to Park Hill having already achieved mastery in each indicator. We understand that the COVID pandemic has impacted each student and their readiness for Kindergarten. Rather, this is information often requested by parents, and should serve as a guide as to what you can work on and reinforce in the months leading to the start of the school year. As always, please feel free to ask questions as they arise, and visit our website for the most up to date information.
• Manages feelings by controlling emotions in an appropriate manner most of the time.
• Manages classroom rules, routines, and transitions with few reminders.
• Interacts with peers by joining groups and sustaining friendships through respect, empathy, and compromise.
• Participates cooperatively and constructively in group situations by balancing the rights and needs of others and solving social problems independently.
• Understanding and articulating what it means to follow our classroom family rules. “Keep yourself safe, your friends safe, and our things safe.”
• Demonstrates independence by managing their own materials, including hanging up their coats, packing their backpack, and carrying their lunch box.
• Identifies and names all uppercase letters and 11-20 lower case letters.
• Shows understanding that a sequence of letters represents spoken words and produces correct sounds for 20-26 letters.
• Shows phonemic awareness by matching beginning and ending sounds for some words.
• Discriminates rhyme by generating a group of rhyming words when given a word.
• Writes to convey meaning by using late invented spelling, (writing what we hear in a word).
• Tells, draws, or writes about another time and place by articulating a story that includes logical order and major details.
• Uses emergent reading skills by pretending to read using language that closely matches the text and/or sounds through words and uses picture cues to decode words and ideas.
• Participates in whole group and small group discussions about characters, setting, problems, and solutions in a text.
• Writes first name correctly.
• Uses correct finger placement on writing implement.
Mathematics – Cognitive
• Persists by planning and pursuing a variety of tasks to completion.
• Problem solves by trying multiple possibilities and thinks through a problem for a solution. (academically and socially)
• Remembers and connects experiences by sharing in whole and small groups.
• Thinks symbolically by pretending and applying information in new ways.
• Verbally counts to 20 and counts 20 objects accurately.
• Tells what number, (1-10) comes next in order either from memory or using a number line to identify.
• Makes sets of objects and can describe which has more, less, the same.
• Tells how many objects in a two or more groups and how many in all.
• Identifies numerals 1-10
• Creates A-B patterns and understands by telling that a pattern repeats.
How do I view my child's grades?
Parents can access their student’s report cards through their DPS Parent Portal account. Once you are signed in to your Parent Portal account, click on the 'Report Card' heading in the menu to view your student’s report card. If you have additional questions specific to a class please reach out directly to your student’s teacher for clarification and information.
A few tips to try if you are having a hard time finding your student’s grade:
Direction from the district – If unable to view grades please change to view All grades or Term 1 to see Term 1 grades. If it gives an error that you can’t see the grades, change browsers or clear cache and cookies by holding all 3 keys for 1 mins Ctrl+Shift+ delete clear history for past 24 hours and you should be able to view grades.
Direction from a parent – From the Parent Portal, click on “Check the gradebook” Then on either “Access Reports & Transcripts” or “Infinite Campus Gradebook”, which takes you to the Infinite Campus site. Then, “grades in the left hand column” and then “T1” for Term 1 grades.
How do I signup for bus transportation?
Students are eligible for bus transportation if Park Hill is their neighborhood school and they live greater than 1 mile from the school. Families that live outside the designated Park Hill boundaries are generally not eligible for bus services to Park Hill. Historically, Bus routes are made available just prior to the start of school in August. Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Transportation Opt-In Program is usually available starting in the Spring prior to the upcoming school year. If your student is eligible and requires DPS Transportation services for the school year, you can opt in via Parent Portal -- click here for instructions during the opt-in period. If families do not opt in by the deadline, their student may experience a delay in service.
My child's bus is running late. What should I do?
Bus transportation is managed by the district. If you have questions/concerns about your child’s school bus (i.e. late or missed bus, child not riding), please contact transportation directly through the Dispatch Hotline: (720)423-4600.
Before and After School Programs
What are the before and after school programs available at Park Hill?
Families in need of childcare before and after school are encouraged to look into their options well before school starts. Park Hill does not specifically provide these services but we do have several programs that we partner with that families can use to help support their schedules. Please note these programs have limited availability.
YMCA Before and After school care (on-campus):
YMCA provides before and/or after-school care on the Park Hill Elementary campus during the school year.
- Registration for YMCA members and currently-enrolled YMCA Out of School Time participants opened April 24, 2023
- Registration for all others opened May 1, 2023
- Registration and more info can be found on the YMCA website
Please sign up for the YMCA “Interest List” so that they can email you a reminder about registration. You can also set up your YMCA account ahead of time by following the steps above.
YMCA Contact Information: Adrian Lockett (720)810-7264
The Children’s Center (Pick up students from PHE) – (303)333-1335; 5209 Montview Blvd
Children’s Center picks up students after class, and they walk to their campus which is nearby.
Additionally, Park Hill offers Enrichment programs to students after school. These programs run ~9-15 weeks and occur one night per week. Families can signup for more than one Enrichment depending on availability. Past Enrichment programs have included Lego classes, chess courses, sporting camps, drama performances, and many other fun topics. We generally will inform parents of the upcoming available Enrichments shortly after the start of the Fall and Spring sessions.
School lunch information
What is the school serving today and what are the costs?
Our understanding at this time is that breakfast and lunches will be free during the 2023-24 school year. We encourage families to still put money on their kids accounts so they can buy a second entree if they wish. Only a student's first meal will be free.
Meal Benefits applications are very important so that students can qualify to receive subsidized meals. If you may qualify for free or reduced lunch, please visit https://www.myschoolapps.com for an application or more information. If you have questions, please email email@example.com.
The cafeteria opens each morning during school days at 7:45 a.m. for students desiring breakfast.
School supply lists
How do I purchase school supplies
Park Hill families are able to order school supplies for next year's classes. We buy school supplies in bulk which helps to provide a discount to families. It is not mandatory to use this service, but we do encourage it as it saves families money and it also allows students to have similar materials. The school receives a small portion of the sales from each kit.
Order Securely Online thru June 4! Supplies are shipped to the school and students will receive school supplies on the first day of school. Orders after June 4 will be charged an extra amount. The final date to order and have supplies sent to the school is June 25.
2. Enter the school ID, PAR387 (3 letters/3 numbers)
3. Follow the directions to complete your order. Choose the grade level your student will be next fall
4. Keep your online confirmation as your receipt.
Supply lists are available through the link above as well if you would like to purchase them on your own. For questions, please contact Catherine Powers firstname.lastname@example.org or Ann Kurth email@example.com.
My student keeps talking about ROAR at school. What is it?
What is PBIS?
PBIS is the school-wide behavior system that we use at Park Hill School. PBIS stands for Positive Behavior Interventions and Support. The philosophy of this program is that by rewarding students for positive behavior through tickets, positive praise, and rewards, students will begin to build intrinsic motivation to behave in a positive way, which will help create a positive learning environment in all areas of the school. Through the PBIS program, Park Hill has developed a common language for behavior expectations in each area of the school. Each child is familiar with the term, “R.O.A.R.” This stands for:
R – Respect Others
O – Ongoing Learning
A – Always Safe
R – Responsible Actions
Students receive a red ticket when they demonstrate one of the ROAR qualities. The student then puts their ticket in a class bucket. On Fridays, two names are drawn from the class ticket bucket and they receive a prize.
Park Hill Panthers ROAR!!!
Colorado Measures of Academic Success (CMAS) testing
What and when is CMAS testing?
The Colorado Measures of Academic Success, or CMAS, is the state summative assessment for language arts, math, science and social studies. CMAS is aligned to the state’s rigorous academic standards and designed to gauge how well students are mastering the standards and are prepared for their next grade.
CMAS testing at Park Hill generally occurs in late March or early April during a 2 week period. Testing at Park Hill occurs only in grades 3-5. Families have the option of opting their child out in advance of the tests. More information on CMAS can be found on the DPS website.
Past years information:
The handouts below are designed to help you better
understand your child’s scores and contain strategies to support your child’s academic success at home.
What does the activity fee cover?
This fee covers field trip transportation, entrance fees, speaker presentations at school, etc.
If you would like to inquire about a scholarship to cover the costs of the fee, please reach out to Ann Kurth in the front office, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Resources for families
I have questions about Medicaid, CHP+ and/or SNAP benefits
Gifted and Talented Program
Does Park Hill offer Gifted and Talented Programming for students?
Our GT program at Park Hill supports advanced learners with lessons that incorporate critical thinking, open-ended problem solving and creativity. Weekly pull out classes are held to extend curriculum and support student ALPs. Support is provided to classroom teachers through regular collaboration and communication, in-class extension activities, co-teaching, and resource gathering as well as supporting staff in understanding best practices for gifted students.
To develop students' social/emotional affect, students choose their own goal and, with support, create strategies to meet the goal. Students are met with regularly to monitor goal attainment as well as to provide social/emotional support. Caring Classrooms curriculum for Social Emotional Learning is used in the classrooms.
At Park Hill, we support our student population based on high level needs not solely on GT identification. We have equitable access to all GT screening and standardized tests. High level groups are formed using teacher recommendation, feedback from collaborative conversations regarding in-class observations and high level thinking together with pre-tests/hard data. High ability groups include far more than formally identified students and groups are fluid, thus supporting many students who are not formally identified, in addition to those that are.
Parent support is provided through regular communication and in person meetings along w conferences. Cognitive testing opportunities are provided for all grades K - 5 and ALP goals for academic and affective achievement are created and monitored throughout the year.