Board wants town's input

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After holding several successful panel discussions with students and teachers, the South Routt School Board would like to hear from community members about school-related issues.

School Board members appear to be in favor of holding annual panel discussions with community members and other district stakeholders to hear concerns, comments and other issues related to the 400-student school system. Board members discussed the idea at their Feb. 17 meeting, and agreed to talk about it again at their March meeting.

"We just want to open the line of communication between all groups," board President Hank deGanahl said Thursday. "If there's something we haven't heard from the community, we'll be able to hear it and address it."

The recent panels conducted with district students and teachers were very beneficial, deGanahl said.

The teacher panel, conducted at the board's January meeting, included teachers from each district school. Five teachers opined on standardized tests, student motivation, attracting and retaining quality teachers, and the strengths and weaknesses of the district.

The teachers and board members agreed the panel was worthwhile and should continue on a more regular basis.

"They really appreciated being able to dialogue directly with the board," Superintendent Steve Jones told board members. "I think it would be a wonderful exercise if every year you assembled a different panel and enabled them to express their views."

Last week, the School Board expressed interest in a community panel to be held during one of its summer meetings.

"I think we're just going to do everything we can to make sure there's no disconnect," deGanahl said. "Even if you might not want to hear what they say, it might be something you need to hear and address."

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