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CC4E: Community input, support appreciated

Dear Editor,

We are writing to thank you for the May 16 editorial, "Our view: CC4E's recommendation to Steamboat school board makes sense."

We want to make sure the community knows that the Steamboat Springs Board of Education will discuss on June 19 and decide on June 26 whether to include a ballot measure for our schools for the November 2017 election. Both school board meetings are scheduled for 5:30 p.m. at the District Board Room, 325 Seventh St, Steamboat Springs. We have encouraged school board members to base their decision on CC4E's recommendations and the community input collected over the last 15 months.

During our May 8 school board presentation, CC4E stressed the need for collaboration among school board members, the school district and the community.

CC4E appreciates the willingness of so many to participate in the process, provide written comments and take surveys.
CC4E committee

We are happy to report that the district's new executive committee consists of two school board members, three district staff, the district-hired owner's representatives and two CC4E members. Although the executive committee does not make final decisions, it will conduct further research on pricing and other issues to help advise the school board.

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As the process moves forward, CC4E encourages all community members to stay engaged. More than ever, our school board needs to hear from the community.

Since our presentation, many have asked us about the pathways matrix and whether it is still valid. The phased approach that was recommended on May 8 does not give up on the pathways matrix.

Our Phase 1 recommendation is to take care of deferred maintenance, build a gym at Strawberry Park Elementary School and a new pod at the high school to house science labs. These are items that were included in all of the pathways and can be taken care of immediately.

Our Phase 2 recommendation is a long-term comprehensive plan of a centrally located high school and middle school with neighborhood elementary schools. This can still be achieved, most likely with one of the pathways that was presented to the public.

More due diligence and community collaboration is needed to reach consensus on a single pathway. The success of the Montessori school (with over 140 students projected for fall 2017), west-side development underway and changing demographic numbers need to be considered in developing a long-term plan.

Although CC4E has given its recommendations, the committee is not going away. CC4E will continue to advocate for community interests. Community comments and suggestions can still be submitted via CC4E.org or emailed to members, and we encourage community members to submit recommendations directly to the board and the school district.

CC4E appreciates the willingness of so many to participate in the process, provide written comments and take surveys. In addition, CC4E is grateful for the support of the Steamboat Today for both the community forums and the editorial. A strong and well-informed populace and media is what every community needs.

Thank you,
Community Committee for Education (CC4E)