The Mancos school board talked over issues both near and far at its regular meeting Monday evening:
The campus renovation now valued at $19.5 million is underway, with about $5.5 million in renovation left to go, according to owner’s rep Monty Guiles.
The football field, elementary school, and cafeteria have mostly been turned back to the school, with just a few “punch items” left, Guiles said.
“Most of the action now is at the PC,” he said, adding later that Superintendent Brian Hanson emphasized heavily that it would be a Performance Center first and a back-up basketball court second.
Guiles said the project has received acclaim from other districts, local referees, and state officials.
The entire project is expected to be complete by the end of the school year.
State newsThe board heard some and talked discussed education-related measures in the November election.
Superintendent Hanson reported out from the West Slope Superintendents Conference he recently attended.
He spoke on a uniform mill levy proposal that would require all districts to levy 27 property tax mills. Right now, Mancos is at 15 mills. If the measure passes, and the community votes no, the school district could be penalized, Hanson said.
“Keep an eye on the legislative session this year,” he said.
He also brought up possible changes to the Read Act, which would require kindergarten through third grade teachers to receive additional training and for districts to provide additional reporting information to the Colorado Department of Education.
The imposition is so significant, he said, that the district would consider declining the $30,000 Read Act money.
Board Director Tim Hunter summarized the Colorado Association of School Boards conference, held in Breckenridge last week. A disconnect between the larger, more urban districts and smaller, rural ones existed, which, Hunter said, is a problem because large districts represent the majority of the state’s school districts.
“The bigger school districts don’t think anything about the redundancy of the reporting issues,” Hunter said. “Whereas we have two people that have to do redundant – time and time again – the same report to four different places.”
He added that the group had supported Proposition CC, which would allow the state to keep revenue collected above limits set by the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights, requiring the state to spend the unrefunded money equally on K-12, higher education, and transportation.
But he called Proposition CC a “Band-Aid” solution, and the board opted not to take a stance on it.
Hanson was equivocal about the proposition.
“If it passes, we stand to gain, we have nothing to lose, as a school district. ... My fear is if it passes, legislators will say, ‘Oh, we fixed school funding,’ and they’re going to lose the conversation that needs to continue,” he said.