by Kathy Doolittle
WALSENBURG- It was out with the old, in with the new for the Huerfano school district RE-1 last Wednesday night. The Hon. Gary Stark had the pleasure of swearing in the new members: Jaye Sudar, Eva Vigil, David Tesitor and Julia Marchant.
Under the watchful eye of Superindendant Dawn Olson, the meeting came to order. The newly elected board began to get acquainted with one another and address past and present issues.
The board quickly got to the business at hand. They decided first to elect the board officers. Nominations were quickly seconded resulting in Sudar as president, Marchant as vice president, Dotter as secretary, and Meadows as treasurer.
Pressing on, newly elected Sudar announced that two interested parties wanted to occupy the vacant seat of District B. Paul Rivera and Sherry Gomez were both vying for the position, and both were in attendance. The board quickly agreed to interview each candidate separately, then cast their votes.
Each candidate was asked a series of questions, and each candidate gave concise, informed and confident answers. After a brief discussion and vote, Sherry Gomez was elected to represent District B.
The board then agreed that the Gardner school district would benefit from having a full time janitor. Following the discussion of Gardner, a guest speaker was introduced.
The Colorado Board Of Education’s Becky Smith, representing TDIP (Targeted District Improvement Plan), then began her powerpoint presentation, discussing all aspects of this program. Curriculum, instruction, job descriptions, organizational charts, mission statements and communication all need to be improved. A partnership with TDIP, where they reach out and support our district, will help our school district attain their goals. On to next business, the annual CASB conference was discussed. This is an annual training meeting for Colorado’s school board members held in Colorado Springs. Although funds were donated for this event from an anonymous private party, the board respectfully declined this generous offer. They opted for less costly training closer to home.
Turning to other business at hand, the board addressed a citizen who voiced concern about the procedures and protocol of dropping off youngsters on the bus routes home. After a short discussion, the issue was mutually resolved.
As the gavel came down to adjourn for the evening, this reporter could not help agreeing with Becky Smith’s earlier comment: the dedicated few on the school board deserve our thanks.