School district names Linda Reed assistant superintendent

It was standing room only for the final Archuleta School District 50 Joint board meeting of the school year on Tuesday night, as the board recognized student excellence, both academically and athletically, while welcoming a new assistant district superintendent and a new curriculum.

The majority of the crowd packing the room attended to applaud district students who had excelled in their extracurricular endeavors. Along with plaudits for the various Destination Imagination state participants and national qualifiers, the board recognized HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) and FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America) participants and national qualifiers, some of whom will be travelling next week for national competitions. The board also recognized the junior high boys’ and girls’ basketball teams for taking league trophies this past season.

Moving onto business, and with most of the students and their proud parents clearing the room, the board introduced the new district assistant superintendent, Linda Reed.

Reed recently moved full time to the Pagosa area (where she had been a part-time resident for the past three years) from Los Angeles, where she had been an administrator for the past eight years.

Originally from Ohio, Reed was a teacher for 15 years and a school principal for 10 years before taking a position as an administrator in Los Angeles County, serving the various school districts in that area. Reed replaces Bill Esterbrook who will be retiring next month after 24 years serving the district, four years as the district’s assistant superintendent, 13 years as the PSHS principal and seven years as the assistant principal.

Reed will take her place in the district offices the middle of next month.

However, before introducing Reed as his replacement, Esterbrook had good news for the district, reporting that third-grade CSAP scores were five points higher than state levels (for Advanced and Proficient levels), with significant growth shown for third-graders from DIBELS scores. “You should feel good about your teachers, your principals,” Esterbrook said, “they’re doing a great job.”

In other business, Gifted Education Coordinator Dr. Nancy Murri presented an overview of the district’s K-8 Gifted and Talented (GAT) program. Since taking over the GAT program last fall, Murri has worked to involve parents, teachers and students in the program.

In his report for the San Juan Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES), board member Ken Fox reported that the Colorado Legislature has approved the proposed merger of Pueblo Community College and the San Juan Basin Technical College, a merger that will serve the Four Corners area with technical and community college secondary education services. In his report, Fox also stated that about $228,000 in stimulus package money would most likely be available to the district later this year.

Finally, the board heard a report from School and Community Prevention Community Coordinator Anna Royer regarding the results of the district’s Health and Wellness Committee’s (HWC) selection of Sexual Health and Substance Abuse curriculum, proposed for application in the district this fall (see related article). After hearing extensive discussion on the curriculum from Royer and from HWC members, the board tabled acceptance of the curriculum, along with a consideration of proposed policy changes, until discussion of the curriculum and policies takes place at a work session scheduled at 5 p.m. Tuesday, June 2, in the district’s administrative board room.

The board could make a decision on both matters during the next scheduled district board meeting, Tuesday, June 9, at 6 p.m., at the district bus barn (where summer board meetings are held).