5280 High School creates students who are thinkers, problem solvers, collaborators, and innovators. 5280 is founded on the principle that success today requires more than just academic, factual knowledge. Professionals today encounter challenges that often require out-of-the-box solutions, and the ability to dynamically engage with the world and others around them. We foster these skills through project based learning, or PBL. PBL is an approach which transforms education from “teachers telling” to “students doing.” More specifically, PBL can be defined as:

  • Engaging learning experiences that involve students in complex, real-world projects through which they develop and apply skills and knowledge

  • A strategy that recognizes that significant learning taps students’ inherent drive to learn, capability to do work, and need to be taken seriously

  • Learning in which academic outcomes are identified up front, but the paths of the student’s learning process are neither predetermined nor fully predictable; we know where students will end up (the academic goals), but do not dictate how they will get there

  • Learning that requires students to draw from many informational sources and disciplines in order to solve problems

  • Experiences through which students learn to manage and allocate resources such as time and materials

Through project based learning, students learn both the academic skills they need to thrive in college, and the soft skills that are so important in professional settings today.

MISSION STATEMENT

Through authentic academic experiences and a culture of holistic wellness embedded in strong diverse community, 5280 High School prepares all students for success in college, their future career, and anything life throws at them.

DESIGN PRINCIPLES

The 5280 High School design principles permeate every aspect of the school, and drive the school’s structures and systems:

  • EQUITY:  We are intentionally diverse and integrated, and all students engage in a rigorous curriculum that prepares them for college as well as the competitive workplace.  Students are held to high standards and given personalized supports to ensure success without academic tracking.  Our teachers value the richness that a diverse student body brings to the classroom, and work to create a culture that allows all students to reach their full potential.  We are a full-inclusion school.
     

  • AUTHENTICITY:  Students engage in purposeful work that is meaningful to them and their community.  Students develop ownership over their learning by having voice and choice in projects that are built upon their personal experience and interests.  Curriculum is built around work that matters, often in the form of projects produced for a public audience or to address concerns of the larger community.  Students consult with outside experts and participate in fieldwork, community service, and academic internships at local companies, nonprofits, and public agencies.  
     

  • INTENTIONAL COMMUNITY:  Teachers and students know each other well, and strong relationships and school community are pillars of 5280.  Recognizing that identity development and personal growth occur in the context of community, we foster relationships of trust and mutual respect among students and adults through small school size, small classes, home visits, advisories, student collaborative work, and intentional community activities at the start of each day.  For a school to be an excellent learning place for students, it must also be a rewarding workplace for teachers.  Teachers design the curriculum and the courses they teach, and are given the flexibility and autonomy necessary to passionately empower their students to meet rigorous academic objectives.  Teachers also work collaboratively to address school issues and are active participants in critical decisions such as professional development, assessment, hiring, and other significant matters.
     

  • JOY & MEANING:  School should be joyful and engaging for students and staff.  Working hard and having fun don’t need to be separate—they often go hand in hand.  Our morning and afternoon wellness programs are designed to be mindful of long-term outcomes and promote the diverse aspects of living a meaningful life, including physical, mental, social, emotional, spiritual, and financial health.  5280 projects help students build agency and internal sense of control, cultivate personal reflection, learn from their mistakes, and gain empathy for others.  


5280 Staff

 Melissa Mouton, Founder  melissa.mouton@5280highschool.org

Melissa Mouton, Founder

melissa.mouton@5280highschool.org

 Cody Miller, 9th Grade Humanities  cody.miller@5280highschool.org

Cody Miller, 9th Grade Humanities

cody.miller@5280highschool.org

 We are now hiring staff...check the  Jobs Page .

We are now hiring staff...check the Jobs Page.


5280 Board of Directors

 Danielle serves as the board chair and is the Director of Adult Education at the Colorado Department of Education. She was a founding teacher at a charter school in NYC and has also done education policy work at the district and federal levels.

Danielle serves as the board chair and is the Director of Adult Education at the Colorado Department of Education. She was a founding teacher at a charter school in NYC and has also done education policy work at the district and federal levels.

   Dr. Brett Kessler, DDS, serves as the Vice-Chair and has been practicing dentistry since 1995, with experience in business start-up and ownership. He actively promotes healthy living in many ways, including testifying before Congress, presenting at industry conferences, and serving on various boards. He also volunteers at recovery facilities, and has donated more than $1 million in complimentary dental services. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Iowa and a Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from the University of Illinois.

Dr. Brett Kessler, DDS, serves as the Vice-Chair and has been practicing dentistry since 1995, with experience in business start-up and ownership. He actively promotes healthy living in many ways, including testifying before Congress, presenting at industry conferences, and serving on various boards. He also volunteers at recovery facilities, and has donated more than $1 million in complimentary dental services. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Iowa and a Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from the University of Illinois.

 Dennis Cyr serves as treasurer of the board. After retiring from the IRS in 2004 after almost 34 years of service, he lives in Denver and works part-time a tax practitioner. He began his career as a Revenue agent in the Manhattan District and worked overseas for the Office of International Operations. He began his management career in the IRS National Office and held several positions including Computer Audit Specialist Manager in the Los Angeles District, tax shelter Branch Manager in the Laguna Niguel District, and Chief Examination Division in the Denver District. Dennis also served as Executive for Compliance in the Southwest Region and Chief Small Business Research in Denver. He is a graduate of Boston College and has served on the boards of 1311 York St, Children’s Charities of America, Community Education Outreach, Hornbuckle Foundation, and Larimer Place Homeowners Association.

Dennis Cyr serves as treasurer of the board. After retiring from the IRS in 2004 after almost 34 years of service, he lives in Denver and works part-time a tax practitioner. He began his career as a Revenue agent in the Manhattan District and worked overseas for the Office of International Operations. He began his management career in the IRS National Office and held several positions including Computer Audit Specialist Manager in the Los Angeles District, tax shelter Branch Manager in the Laguna Niguel District, and Chief Examination Division in the Denver District. Dennis also served as Executive for Compliance in the Southwest Region and Chief Small Business Research in Denver. He is a graduate of Boston College and has served on the boards of 1311 York St, Children’s Charities of America, Community Education Outreach, Hornbuckle Foundation, and Larimer Place Homeowners Association.

Danielle Ongart

Brett Kessler, DDS

Dennis Cyr

 
 Xakema serves as the secretary of the board and is a practicing commercial litigation attorney. She is a 2009 Teach for America corps member, and before becoming a lawyer, she taught seventh grade reading and writing in Houston, Texas.

Xakema serves as the secretary of the board and is a practicing commercial litigation attorney. She is a 2009 Teach for America corps member, and before becoming a lawyer, she taught seventh grade reading and writing in Houston, Texas.

 Rachel Ksenyak is a Denver-based education consultant with over a decade of experience in charter school authorizing, program development, strategy, and human capital. Rachel's prior work experience includes STRIVE Prep charter schools, the National Association of Charter School Authorizers, and Chicago Public Schools.

Rachel Ksenyak is a Denver-based education consultant with over a decade of experience in charter school authorizing, program development, strategy, and human capital. Rachel's prior work experience includes STRIVE Prep charter schools, the National Association of Charter School Authorizers, and Chicago Public Schools.

 Austin Eubanks is an expert in the addiction treatment industry and a nationally recognized speaker and media contributor on topics surrounding behavioral health and addiction recovery. He is the Chief Operations Officer for Foundry Treatment Center, also serves on the board of directors for Stout Street Foundation, and is a featured member of Speakers for Change. An injured survivor of the Columbine shooting, Austin’s traumatic experience as a teen was the catalyst to his painful journey through addiction. Now in long-term recovery, he has devoted his career to helping those who have turned to substances as a result of trauma. Austin has spoken to hundreds of thousands across the nation regarding his personal journey as well as strategies for addressing the issues of substance abuse plaguing the nation.

Austin Eubanks is an expert in the addiction treatment industry and a nationally recognized speaker and media contributor on topics surrounding behavioral health and addiction recovery. He is the Chief Operations Officer for Foundry Treatment Center, also serves on the board of directors for Stout Street Foundation, and is a featured member of Speakers for Change. An injured survivor of the Columbine shooting, Austin’s traumatic experience as a teen was the catalyst to his painful journey through addiction. Now in long-term recovery, he has devoted his career to helping those who have turned to substances as a result of trauma. Austin has spoken to hundreds of thousands across the nation regarding his personal journey as well as strategies for addressing the issues of substance abuse plaguing the nation.

Xakema Henderson

Rachel Ksenyak

Austin Eubanks

 
   Linda Brown, Director, has a strong passion for education and a long history of volunteer nonprofit leadership work. She has served on the boards of Art Garage, Scholars Unlimited, East Angels Friends & Alumni, as well as several school committees and boards.

Linda Brown, Director, has a strong passion for education and a long history of volunteer nonprofit leadership work. She has served on the boards of Art Garage, Scholars Unlimited, East Angels Friends & Alumni, as well as several school committees and boards.

Linda Brown