Briefs RE1J School District

Board gets cost of election participation

At a regular meeting Monday, July 13, school district business manager Stephanie Juneau told the Gunnison RE1J school board that the cost of entering November’s election would be $9,500.



The district would need to appear on the ballot only if more than one person were to run for any of the three open school board seats. School board president MJ Vosburg, vice-president Terri Wenzlaff and secretary Jim Perkins will all leave their seats vacant.
Vosburg’s seat, but not the role of board president, is reserved for a candidate who lives north of Round Mountain, while the other four seats on the board are open to any county resident.
If the board election were contested, then the district would also consider putting a question on the ballot that, if approved by voters, could lift the term limits from school board members.
While most local municipalities have done away with term limits, the school district has maintained them. But board member Anne Hausler pointed out that there isn’t usually enough interest in the board seats to make limits necessary.
The board must decide by late August if it will participate in the election.

District hires new director of curriculum and assessment
Superintendent Jon Nelson told the school board that the district had officially hired Dan Schmidt to be the new director of curriculum and assessment and that he would start Monday, July 20.
The position was left open by the April 6 resignation of Dr. Chris Purkiss, who took a position teaching at Angelo University in San Angelo, Texas.
Schmidt is the former superintendent of Genoa-Hugo, a school district of 201 students on the eastern plains of Colorado near Limon.
According to Nelson, the district had a number of applicants for the position and the committee charged with vetting the résumés passed along two candidates for review by the superintendent, who conducted interviews.
Schmidt beat out his competitor for the position partially because “he has been on the forefront in terms of instituting a change to 21st-century learning skills at Genoa-Hugo,” said Nelson.

Renovation projects on track
The school expansion projects are happening on time. Ethan Gibson, the district’s owner representative from the Blythe Group & Co., which is overseeing the district’s school renovation and expansion projects, says all of the projects are on schedule.
Although some of the plans still need to be formalized, Gibson said the Crested Butte Community School could be ready to have furniture and materials moved back in by August 19. At the very least, the kitchen will be ready to be restocked on that date.
The relocated Tommy V ball field in Crested Butte will also have a fresh, new layer of sod by the end of August, as all but the finishing touches on the field will be complete. The hope is that the sod will be in place long enough to be cut a few times before the snow flies, according to Marc Litzen, project manager for the relocation.
The district administration will also be able to move back into the Lake Elementary School the week after Labor Day in early September, after students have been settled in the building.
“One reason we’re moving the administration in later is to let Cannon [Leatherwood] and his assistants take care of getting the technology at the school up and running before they have to deal with moving the administrative group,” Gibson says.
He also told the board that an analysis has been done for all of the projects for which all of the construction bids have been awarded and it shows between 13 percent and 20 percent of the work is being done by contractors based in Gunnison County.

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