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Mancos school board hears from DAC and students at Monday night board meeting

The Mancos school district heard from students at their board meeting Monday night. (Screen capture via Zoom)
Three Mancos students represent the district in the city government

The Mancos RE-6 school board heard from student representatives and the District Accountability Committee and discussed items presented at their meeting Monday night.

During the DAC report, the board was given more information about district and staff training with an emphasis on trauma, social-emotional learning and restorative practices.

The DAC emphasized that the training uses a whole-child approach, which works to understand the needs and intervention required for each child, tapping into physical, mental and emotional needs.

The board noted that many students don’t live in the district, leading them to ask and analyze what the Mancos school district offers to students and families that aren’t being offered in other local school districts such as Montezuma-Cortez and Dolores.

The DAC proposed a potential get-together or other networking activity for out-of-district parents to help them connect with other parents, including providing an opportunity for carpooling and other support.

The board also spoke of trying to connect with Mancos school district alumni to hear how former students are doing and to ask if the education they received at Mancos prepared them for college, military, trade school or the workforce.

Additionally, board President Emily Hutcheson-Brown shared that connecting with alumni would help build a list of people to contact for career fairs and other events that could inspire students to pursue various fields by seeing former Mancos students working and thriving in those fields.

While the board acknowledged that this would be something of value to the school district and to Mancos students, they said they would have to brainstorm the best way to go about reaching out to alumni and asking them these questions before an actual plan of action can be put into place.

Three students from the high school were also present at the meeting, providing information to the board about their recent activities as school ambassadors to the town of Mancos.

The three students applied for the opportunity, and all three were chosen because they were all so different, according to one of the students.

As part of their duties, the students attend the town hall meetings, providing updates to the city about upcoming activities at the school and other information regarding the district.

Hutcheson-Brown asked the students if they felt like their voices were heard by city officials, to which the students said yes, sharing that it was “cool” that the town is taking the step to have student voices represented at their meetings.

Superintendent Todd Cordrey told the board that the program that provides licensure for aspiring teachers, would bring three students to the district on Wednesday to observe Mancos teachers.

All members of the board expressed their appreciation for Mancos teachers, saying that it was a testament to the teachers’ dedication that they were willing to let these student teachers shadow and learn from them.

School Resource Officer Travis Greenlee shared updates on the planned SRO task force/program that the district is hoping to have up and running by the start of the new school year in August.

According to Greenlee, the task force is being built through the input and engagement of the community to ensure maximum student safety.

Cordrey emphasized the importance of building upon a relationship with the Montezuma County Sheriff’s Office and the city of Cortez to keep the schools safe.

The next Mancos school board meeting is Monday, March 25 at 6 p.m.