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Vote allows Dolores school board leaders to offer Reed the job of acting superintendent

The Dolores school board voted to allow offering Alesa Reed the position of acting superintendent for the Dolores RE-4A School District for the 2024-2025 school year. (Dolores School District)
Acting superintendent would allow the board to conduct a nationwide search

The Dolores RE-4A school board on Thursday voted to allow the board president and vice president to negotiate a contract offering the acting superintendent position to Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment Director Alesa Reed.

The acting superintendent position would allow the board to search for a long-term superintendent to replace Reece Blincoe.

The board also discussed developments at the library and new playground equipment.

Blincoe announced his resignation at the May board meeting. His resignation will take effect at the end of June.

The board expressed the need to hire Blincoe’s replacement before the start of the school year, and thought that was not enough time for a nationwide search.

The board discussed hiring an acting superintendent for the 2024-2025 school year while searching for a long-term replacement and allowing for staff, parent and community feedback about superintendent candidates.

Reed has been an employee of the district for more than 30 years.

According to the district website, four out of six of Reed’s children graduated from Dolores High School.

“She has worked in many positions in this district. This has given her a unique perspective on the workings of education. She has worked in transportation, substituted, taught in preschool and elementary for 24 years and is currently working at the administration office,” the district said. “The Dolores district has been a place where she has grown and developed her talents as an educator and administrator. She merged into the administrative side of education in the last few years.”

Reed has also been “instrumental” in the writing and receiving of grants in the district that help support academic, physical and mental well-being of students, according to the district.

The board also voted to hold a special meeting before Aug. 12 to discuss listing the superintendent position, talk about search committees and review the interview process for a new superintendent.

Another one of the main topics of discussion to start their last meeting of the 2023-2024 school year included discussing the library board of trustees and the upcoming election.

Because the library district was created by the school and community in the mid-1980s, the library board and library director has to be approved by both the school district and the community.

Sean Gantt, director of the Dolores Public Library, told the board that he’d like to get the process officially on paper with signatures to formalize it, as there is no written agreement or process, even though this has been the way of doing things since the 1980s.

Board Secretary Clay Tallmadge asked how long the agreement would be in place, to which Gantt said it would be in place “forever” unless it was absolutely necessary that something be changed.

The board said that potential library agreement would be added to discussion items to their next meeting, in August.

Tallmadge, the district’s BOCES representative, gave a brief BOCES update, saying that the remediation between Montezuma-Cortez and BOCES had come to a conclusion, and the mediator gave those on the BOCES board an update on the differences to be worked out between BOCES and Montezuma-Cortez.

The Journal reached out to BOCES Director Royce Tranum, who said BOCES and Montezuma-Cortez did two days of mediation with John Tweedy.

An MOU was signed at the conclusion of the mediation session, and that MOU will need to be approved by the BOCES board before it will become public. The next BOCES meeting is Wednesday, Aug. 7 at 5:30 p.m.

Blincoe was not in attendance because of a vacation, but the board, minus President Maegan Crowley, briefly went over Blincoe’s superintendent report, highlighting that the final budget will be approved June 27.

Updates on the playground, which resides in a flood plain, also were discussed. Surveys were sent out, even to Dolores’s elementary school students, to see what the children, staff and community utilizing the playground wished to see added or maintained.

Catalogs of playground equipment were provided to classrooms to see what interested students, with the report saying that most of the catalogs came back with everything circled or highlighted, pointing to the enthusiasm of students.

There were also multiple requests for characters such as dragons, which was credited to the beloved dragon featured at the Joe Rowell Park.

Organizers of the playground project said they hoped to hear from the board soon what kind of budget they would be working with ahead of the renovations.

This article was updated June 19 to report correctly that the Dolores school board approved the start of a process to offer Alesa Reed the position of acting superintendent.