Steamboat Springs School District to add curriculum director

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In other action

■ The School Board honored board members Laura Anderson and Lisa Brown for their four years of service. Brown next month will be replaced by Wayne Lemley, who is running unopposed for her District 2 seat. Sandra Sharp, an adjunct professor at Colorado Mountain College, or Rebecca Williams, a former Steamboat Springs High School teacher, will replace Anderson after the Nov. 1 election results are certified.

Board president Robin Crossan listed the accomplishments Brown and Anderson had helped to achieve during their tenure, and Superintendent Brad Meeks presented them with plaques to commemorate their service.

■ The board heard a presentation by the Northwest Board of Cooperative Educational Services regarding the services they will offer special education students this year.

■ The board approved an additional $5,500 to be spent on the recently completed renovation of boys and girls bathrooms at Steamboat Springs Middle School.

— The Steamboat Springs School Board on Monday night voted unanimously to bring back a director position to the district that was cut from their budget in the 2009-10 school year.

Superintendent Brad Meeks this week will start accepting applications for a director of teaching and learning position that will oversee and implement all of the district’s education programs and curriculum.

“Revisiting the teaching and learning position will be a move that will strengthen this district,” he said before the vote. “I believe this will allow us to make our already high performing district even stronger.”

Meeks said that not having a curriculum director in the district has created a lack of coordination in some areas of the curriculum between the district’s elementary, middle and high schools.

He also said he would like to see the district in the future hire two specialists who will work with students to improve their performance in a variety of subjects.

The new director will earn between $81,974 and $107,266 depending on his or her experience, and the job will be posted internally for at least five days. It also will be advertised as an interim position that will be evaluated for renewal at the end of this school year.

Before the vote, board member Laura Anderson asked Meeks where the funding for the position would come from. She also questioned whether the district should be adding administration staff at a time when teachers positions could be cut because of further budget reductions.

The position was nixed from the school district’s budget during the 2009-10 school year, a move then-Superintendent Shalee Cunningham said saved the district more than $111,000 per year.

Finance Director Dale Mellor said Monday that the salary for the new position likely will be drawn from a $300,000 increase in revenue he estimates the district will receive from the state because of Steamboat’s enrollment growth of about 56 students this year.

According to an updated organizational chart Meeks presented to the board, the director of teaching and learning will oversee the district’s ELL teachers, Title 1 programs, special education teachers and staff development programs. He also proposed that the district’s technology integration specialists and data specialists be moved from the technology department to work directly with the new curriculum director.

Also at Monday’s meeting, School Board President Brian Kelly told his fellow board members that he thinks the district still holds the title to a 1-acre site of land on Routt County Road 43 near Cow Creek where a historic schoolhouse built in the early 1900s still stands.

He said records show the district filed to cede the title to a nearby development in 1993, but the deal may not have been finalized.

A group of four homeowners who live near the site were present at Monday’s meeting and told School Board members that if they are designated as the legal landowners, they would like them to preserve the schoolhouse as a historic site. They said in previous years, they have painted and kept up the schoolhouse, which they said was formerly called School District 26.

Kelly said he still was working to determine whether the school district legally owns the land the Cow Creek Schoolhouse is on because records show the land was sold in a 2007 tax auction. Kelly said he expects to have an answer on who legally owns the property as early as this month.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210 or email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com

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