Steve Jones isn't ready to retire after all.
Jones, who will leave his job as superintendent of the South Routt School District in June, has been named the director of continuing and professional education for the University of Colorado at Denver's School of Education. He accepted the position last week.
"I really did look at retiring," Jones said Tuesday. But the allure of working in an urban environment after more than 30 years in rural education was too much to resist, he said.
"It's very different and really renewing," Jones said about his new post. "I'm really pumped about it."
The Division of Continuing and Professional Education offers courses and programs for working teachers and other education professionals. Many of the courses and programs are developed in concert with Denver-area school districts and community agencies to meet specific district and teacher needs.
According to a job description posted on the School of Education's Web site, Jones is expected to develop an innovative program of continuing professional development opportunities that address the needs of K-12 teachers and mental health professionals. Jones also is expected to analyze the School of Education's competition and identify new opportunities for the school, secure additional clients and lead advertising and marketing efforts for the Division of Continuing and Professional Education.
Jones said his experience in identifying professional development opportunities for teachers and administrators helped him land the job. His career in public education has spanned more than three decades.
After graduating from Western State College in Gunnison, Jones taught on Colorado's Eastern Plains before earning a master's degree in special education from the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley. He taught special education in California while he worked on his master's degree.
In 1972, Jones became the special education director for the East Central Board of Cooperative Educational Services in Limon. In 1980, he was named executive director of the Mountain BOCES, which covers a 10-school district area along the Interstate 70 corridor. He remained in that position for 19 years before coming to Oak Creek in 1999 to take over as superintendent of the South Routt School District. His June departure was planned long ago, and the School Board recently hired Vilas School District Principal Kelly Reed to replace him.
"It's been a great job," Jones said of his six years in South Routt. "I've really enjoyed it here."
Jones and his wife, Lynne, plan to move to the Evergreen area in late June or early July. Jones begins his job in mid-July.
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