Highland Elementary third-grader Ily Rubio has a new addition to her family. Several months ago, she became the “adopted” granddaughter of Joe Kaspar. Kaspar was in the U.S. Air Corps and is now a resident of the Colorado State Veterans Home in Rifle. Ily and nearly two-dozen Highland Elementary student council members make a monthly visit to the veterans home, and each has an elder that they have adopted.
“I enjoy it very much,” said Kaspar of the monthly Highland Mustang visits. “It makes my day.”
On their visit Feb. 28, many of the residents were playing bingo with their Highland friends. Kaspar, however, has trouble seeing, so Ily read “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” and “All About Sam” during their visit and presented him with a beautiful bracelet that she had made him.
“It makes me feel happy to help him and talk with him,” said Ily. “It just feels good.”
Visiting the veterans home is just one of the projects that the Highland Elementary student council does throughout the year. With the guidance of teachers Holly Bosley and Erin Mulcare, the group of nearly 50 third- and fourth-graders has led a coat drive, created supportive messages for teachers during Thanksgiving, written Christmas cards to soldiers overseas, and provided blankets to their fellow Highland students if they are sick or injured, and they are in charge of the school’s recycling program.
“We are the leaders of the school,” said Ily matter-of-factly.
“In student council, I get to help people and make them happy,” added fourth-grader Leilani Domingo. “We do things like reading to the veterans, recycling and saving the earth, and giving a classmate a blanket when they are sick. It is all helping people, and that makes me happy.”
Highland is the only elementary school in Garfield Re-2 with a formal student council. It is open to third- and fourth-graders, and there are no specific prerequisites other than maintaining good academic standards, taking advantage of extra help academically if needed to maintain their good academic standards, and being willing to work hard.
“We’re very proud of them. They work very hard,” said Bosley. “Serving others will help them in whatever they choose to do in the future. We want to encourage students to participate.”
Thirty Rifle Middle School students took part in the 15th annual Legislative Day at the Capitol on Feb. 20. Students from the RMS Civics classes converged on the Colorado State Capitol to observe their legislators at work. Across the state, nearly 250 middle- and high-school students were able to participate, and more than 110 were able to shadow a legislator or legislative aide for all or part of the day. Parents, educators and special guests participated in a morning educational forum at the Capitol, observed legislative activities and joined students and legislators for a lunchtime open forum at the Scottish Rite Masonic Hall. Rifle Middle School teachers Mimi Allen and Becca Nielsen accompanied the students on the trip.
School board meeting
The next Garfield Re-2 school board meeting will be held at Cactus Valley Elementary on March 11. The meeting will begin at 5 p.m.
If you have any questions about the Garfield Re-2 School District, or about the information above, please contact Theresa Hamilton, Director of Districtwide Services at 970-665-7621 or firstname.lastname@example.org.