It takes 10 fingers to tally up these Re-1 successes
David Letterman wrote the book on top 10s, so well leave the humor to him. Most everyone, however, likes to look back on accomplishments, so as the school year comes to a close next week, heres a list of the top 10 highlights from the past year in the Roaring Fork School District.The list does not recognize all the many individual accomplishments of schools, teachers and students but paints a broad picture of strength and growth across the district.1 After much public input, the RFSD board of education approved an extensive facilities master plan developed by consulting architects. The district hired a financial consulting firm and continued to collect community input about the feasibility of a bond and mill levy election to fund needed upgrades and building projects.2 Three former community education foundations supporting the district were rolled into the new Roaring Fork Public Education Foundation with a new director. The foundation issued Mini Grants and inaugural professional development grants and hosted a fund-raiser ball. 3 The school district continued as a leader in Colorado in the move toward standards-based grading and reporting in order to increase achievement for all students. The standards-based system continued successfully at the elementary level, was initiated in the middle schools and will roll into the high schools next year.4 The school district earned a strong on-site accreditation review in March from Colorado Department of Education officials. Reviewers called the district a model for other school districts in the state with a strong focused strategic plan from which there are measurable student achievement gains. 5 As overall Latino enrollment in the district reached 36 percent, the District Accountability Committee committed to a year of investigating how Latinos and Anglos can learn best side by side. A series of meetings were conducted in Spanish with community members and student facilitators.6 After an interesting race, Brad Zeigel of Carbondale and Michael Bair of Basalt were elected as new school board members. Sue Hakanson, a four-year board member, was named the new president.7 Among other impressive awards for teachers throughout the district, Roaring Fork High School longtime teacher and current librarian Karol Sacca was named as one of four finalists for the 2004 Colorado Teacher of the Year. After 25 years as a teacher, Sacca continues to engage students in unique reading programs.8 With a new bilingual principal and many dedicated teachers, Carbondale Elementary continued to work hard and introduce new ideas in an effort to improve reading, writing and math for all students. The enrollment of second language learners at the school has grown from approximately 30 to 60 percent in the last five years.9 & 10 Academic honors earned by students across the district during the past year are too numerous to mention, ranging from Roaring Fork High students placing second in state speech contests, to Bridges High students publishing in professional math journals, from eight students at Glenwood Springs High making all-state choir, band or jazz band, to Basalt High students placing at state HOSA competitions. Spanning from state Home Energy Project awards for students from Glenwood Springs Middle to regional math champions at Basalt Middle, students across the district excelled in numerous academic areas.
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