School board thanks staff, residents for hard work

— In a spotlight of success at Monday night's Steamboat Springs School Board meeting, board members congratulated and thanked community members and staff for their excellent contributions.

Cindy Gay, science teacher at Steamboat Springs High School, was given a plaque awarding her the 2000 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.

Sally Claassen, Sherry Kammerer and Don Schwartz were given a memento thanking them for hard work done on the Education Fund Board's growth commission.

Joan Allsberry and high school students spoke on behalf of the middle and high schools' successful Challenge Day Program.

Challenge Day a full-day workshop addressing issues of violence, racism, teasing, stereotypes, tobacco, social oppression, drugs and alcohol within the context of school life will begin next Monday and Tuesday at the middle school.

The workshop is for students, teachers, parents, administrators, counselors and community members to work on respect and communication through games, activities, group discussions, ice breakers and trust-building exercises.

Also at the meeting, Paula Stephenson, school board director, reported the Board Of Cooperative Education Services is planning a three-year accountability program for the special-education programs throughout Northwest Colorado.

Stephenson, the school board's BOCES representative, said the new accountability program will allow BOCES to track the progress of special-education programs. The first phase of the program is set to be completed by the end of this calendar year.

BOCES consists of representatives from six different districts in Northwest Colorado who meet once every other month.

Stephenson also said this was the first year BOCES has been recognized as an accredited institution allowing teachers to obtain a Colorado teaching license.

In other business, the school board also received a briefing of proposed ballot items for the November election.

Sandy Evans-Hall, Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association executive director, and Bill Stuart, vice president, approached the school board with a list of issues their tax is trying to address, a 3-2-1 solution and the intricacies of how and why they should support this tax.

Because tourism has seen a decline throughout the nation, Stuart said Steamboat isn't trying to increase tourism with the 3-2-1 tax but maintain its current standing.

Evans-Hall said in the 3-2-1 initiative, three stands for 3 percent of a sales tax on lift tickets, 2 percent on lodging, sporting good equipment rentals, outdoor recreational activities and instruction, and the 1 percent on dining.

Both Dan Birch, school board president, and Tom Sharp, school board treasurer, showed their support for the tax.

Another November ballot item included Campaign 4 Kids, putting two proposed taxes on the ballot to support early childhood education.

Debbie Young represented Campaign 4 Kids in its endeavors to ease the accessibility and affordability of early childhood education.

Campaign 4 Kids is a voluntary group of concerned residents that devised a plan to include a .5 percent city sales tax, which excludes food and utilities, and a 1 mill levy county property tax, which equals $9 for every $100,000 of residential property value.

Tami Havener, school board secretary, said she would like the support of the school board.

District Superintendent Cyndy Simms said it is very likely an administrator, faculty and staff after-school gathering to talk about the November ballot items will take place.

Also at the meeting, Sharp said one person has not yet been paid for the pay for performance money awarded to district schools Simms.

Sharp moved that Simms receive a $1,500 bonus for the 2001-2002 school year.

Sharp said Simms has performed admirably in attaining district goals and appreciates her hard work as superintendent. The school board voted unanimously to approve the motion.

The board also approved in a 4-1 vote that it supports the East Routt Library Board in the exploration of the George P. Sauer Human Services Center as a new location for the Bud Werner Memorial Library.

Sharp moved not to approve the board support for this exploration but was outweighed in a 4-1 vote.

Sharp said he believes the resolution is a mistake and that the school district should not forfeit its property to the library board because that would not be in the best interest of the district.

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