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Mancos school board discusses principal candidate interviews at Monday meeting

The Mancos school board meeting took place on Monday night. (Screen Capture via Zoom)
The district had six principal candidates with four finalists

On Monday, Mancos School District RE-6 school board heard from science fair state students, discussed teacher salaries and received statistics on students and sport programs.

At the start of the meeting, the Mancos school board heard from secondary science fair teacher Brady Archer, and honored his science students who competed at the state science fair.

The students received multiple awards, read off by Mancos school board President Emily Hutcheson-Brown.

Special awards, which were announced first, included the Colorado Environmental Health Association award (Tymbri Priestley), STEMgirls LLC award (Layla Mitchell), Society of Manufacturing Engineers award (Cuinn Archer), Little Shop of Physics award (Teagan Archer), State of Colorado Division of Reclamation, Mining and Safety award (Colter Dennison), Trout Unlimited award (Dennison), U.S. Navy and Marine award (Cuinn Archer) and CO2/Greenhouse Gas Reduction award (Quorra Benally).

Junior division grand awards included Earth and Environmental Sciences award honorable mention (Dennison), Engineering second place (Vaughn Bankston), Engineering first place (Cuinn Archer) and Best CSEF Project award third place (Benally),

Hutcheson-Brown and the rest of the board praised the students for their awards and work on their science projects, saying they were proud of the students.

In addition, Archer was awarded the Colorado Association of Science Teacher’s award and the Doug Steward Memorial award.

In board reports, member Victor Figueroa updated the board about CASB, as well as giving some background information on the rural finance act, which if passed, could help provide funding for rural school districts.

The board also discussed teacher pay, noting that they are still hoping to raise salaries to be more competitive with other districts in the area.

Hutcheson-Brown said that the board continues “to put teacher salaries at the forefront of all considerations.”

District staff and the board shared a breakfast and “linkage exercise” that also provided insight to the board about teacher pay, and the board thanked those who participated for their help in providing feedback on the issue.

In his superintendent report, Superintendent Todd Cordrey gave the board an update regarding the search for a secondary school principal, saying that they had six candidates, and four candidates being chosen as finalists.

Cordrey expressed his excitement about the candidates, saying that they had been clear on what the district stands for and values, and they are hoping to get a good read on the candidates during the interview phase, which will take place on Friday, April 26.

“We’re very clear with what we’re about,” Cordrey said.

The committee for the upcoming interviews are made up of parents, students, staff and more.

Following discussions on the status of hiring a new principal, the board and Cordrey heard from Christine Brice-Nelson on SCYS.

In her presentation to the board, Brice-Nelson shared that studies done in the Mancos school district showed that 67% of students that are regularly attendees hit their “growth target” or are on par with academic achievement at their grade level, 97% of regular attendees improved their social emotional skills, and 92% held an attendance rate of 90% or higher, as well as other districtwide statistics.

Next, the board heard a presentation from secondary school Athletic Director Travis Greenlee on student engagement through “education-based athletics and activities.”

The report showed that 74 students participated in fall sports, over 85 high school students participated in combined high school athletics and activities, including band, National Art Honor Society and student council. Eighty middle school students participated in combined activities, including 25 middle school students who participated in the band.

The high school has a 57.8% participation rate, and the middle school has a 65.6% participation rate.

Program successes for the high school included football league and state championships, volleyball regional champions and state qualifiers, cheerleading regional placers and state qualifiers, wrestling regional and state placers, boys’ basketball district champions and regional hosts, girls’ basketball district champs, regional hosts and state consolation champions.

Program successes for the middle school were volleyball league champions, football league champions and girls’ basketball league runners-up.

The next Mancos school board meeting is Monday, May 20, at 6 p.m.