Center School Board meets new faculty

CENTER — The Center Consolidated School District Board of Education gathered online and on-site in Fyock Library Oct. 13 to meet new faculty members and honor the district’s Teacher of the Year for 2019-2020, Kim Gonzales.

Kicking off first quarter reports, Center High School Principal Kevin Jones gave “Kudos to everyone for adapting to new procedures. I think teachers and students have done a great job.”

Joy Werner followed with headcounts and other details from the Academic Recovery Center (ARC) and Center Virtual Academy (CVA). Werner, the Virtual Academy Director and ARC Principal, said “we were proactive with planning, and we’re moving forward.” Part-time staff and “success coaches” have helped students with tutoring support.

ARC numbers are up to 19, an increase from last year. But the dozen CVA students today dropped from a year ago. For the first quarter, a total of 168 students from kindergarten through 12th grade worked online. For the second quarter, Werner estimates this number to drop to 112.

For total numbers, Zimmerman said Center recorded 590 students Oct. 1, the state’s official count date. This is 14 fewer than last year, but the calculation is not a straight headcount. On average, Colorado directs $9,000 for each student in the state. Yet 89% of Center’s students are eligible for free or reduced lunches, and 86% are considered at-risk.

“These numbers help the funding formula,” Zimmerman explained.

Looking back a week, Zimmerman noted how the district’s virtual Open House Oct. 6 drew a big crowd. More than 200 families responded with postcards to enter a prize drawing, including a family pass to the Sand Dunes Recreation swimming pool, a $50 gift certificate to Jones Oil, and two iPads.

When the board met a handful of new teachers Tuesday, Oct. 13, it was significantly less than the crowd of more than 20 last year. As Zimmerman observed, “We’re feeling good about our retention efforts.”

Board members Enrique Aguilar, Kimberlee Duran, Lyn Bogle, Lloyd Garcia and Misty Palacios attended the meeting Tuesday and will devote a few hours to policy document reviews before the next meeting Nov. 10.


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