Private school year approaches in Steamboat Springs |

Private school year approaches in Steamboat Springs

Lowell Whiteman faculty brush up on outdoor first aid at biannual training

Gina Wither puts the finishing touches on a sling she made for Erin Davis on Wednesday at The Lowell Whiteman School's wilderness first aid training course. Wither, Davis and other Lowell WHiteman faculty members will join their students next week for an orientation camping trip.

— Magazines, sweatshirts and other unconventional items were being fashioned into splints and slings to treat imaginary injuries in The Lowell Whiteman School's gymnasium Wednesday morning as faculty members learned the best ways to help a student who is injured miles away from a classroom.

At the conclusion of their biannual, 16-hour outdoor first aid class led by the Wilderness Medicine Institute, Lowell Whiteman's faculty members said they were one step closer to welcoming their students back to their rustic campus north of Strawberry Park next week.

Course instructor Adam Crenshaw, from Lander, Wyo., taught the teachers how to assess everything from fractures and sprains to blisters and bruises.

"What's fun is taking people from ground zero to being able to walk into a potentially overwhelming situation where they can act competently and confidently," Crenshaw said.

Crenshaw said his course will help prepare Whiteman's teachers, who lead their students on several outdoor excursions throughout the year, to also assess environmental illnesses such as altitude sickness and hypothermia.

New Lowell Whiteman faculty member Nuala Judycki said the course was an interesting part of her new workplace.

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"Everything is going to be different," said Judycki, who last month moved to the Yampa Valley from California's Santa Ynez Valley. "But it's been great getting to know everyone over the last month, and I'm really looking forward to meeting the students."

Judycki will direct a new program at the school that will work with students who have diagnosed learning disabilities. She will meet the school's students for the first time next week when they disembark for the Slavonia Trailhead north of Clark on a camping trip that serves as Lowell Whiteman's back-to-school orientation.

Lowell Whiteman students start classes Aug. 29, a week after they've had a chance to get to know one another around a campfire.

Meanwhile, the heads of Steamboat's other two private schools also are busy preparing for their students to return next week.

New Lowell Whiteman Primary School Head of School Sharon Mensing will join her faculty and 66 students next week on an annual back-to-school camping trip on a ranch that borders the Elk River.

Mensing, who moved to the Yampa Valley from New York, takes over for longtime head of school Nancy Spillane, who retired after 18 years in the position.

And at Christian Heritage School, Administrator Dave Entwistle said just fewer than 80 students will begin classes at his private school west of Steamboat on Wednesday.

"We've got some super things happening here and I'm very optimistic we're going to have a great year," he said.

New additions to Christian Heritage's curriculum include Advanced Placement English language and art history classes.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210 or email

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