CC4E school group reporting progress | SteamboatToday.com

CC4E school group reporting progress

Soda Creek Elementary student Eva Minotto colors on the first day of school in 2014.

— The Community Committee for Education, or CC4E, is picking up speed as the group works to make recommendations for the future of the Steamboat Springs School District.

CC4E members representing task forces studying areas including district facilities, accountability and policy, demographics and finance reported meaningful progress during a meeting Tuesday.

Facilities task force leader Kevin Sankey said his nine-member task force has visited every district school and land site and is ready to sit down and brainstorm about a half-dozen possible solutions for the district's facilities needs.

"At this point, we've done all the investigation we can do, short of knowing demographics and some information potentially on programming," Sankey said. "I have really pushed, and our committee has basically said the next 60 days are critical."

Superintendent Brad Meeks suggested the facilities task force meet with the programs task force to swap information, and Sankey said such a meeting could take place within the next few weeks.

"This will be out first chance of taking all that we've learned and puzzling it together," Sankey said.

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The CC4E demographics task force reported Tuesday that members expected a new demographics report from Denver demographer Jim Looney by mid-October. A public presentation of the new demographics report is tentatively scheduled for Nov. 10 at Library Hall.

The committee's policy and accountability task force Tuesday presented a first look at all the comments the group has gathered on the policies of the district and proposed areas of improvement.

Among the comments studied by the task force were those submitted by community members concerned about district communication practices and district transparency or seeking more information about school finance, district open enrollment policies, previous bond measures and dozens of other topics.

Policy and accountability task force member Robin Schepper said that if the district can correct or better inform the community about some of the district's policies now, it can build some credibility and trust before the district proposes a new bond or mill levy next November.

"If the board and the district take action, it could be great groundwork for getting buy-in for a mill levy or a bond or whatever it is in November 2017," she said.

CC4E has created a tentative timeline for task force presentations to the committee and to the public over the coming three months.

In addition to a public presentation on demographics, the group is planning a public forum on school finance and a public discussion forum on accountability, policy, programs and staff, as well as updates from each task force to the Board of Education.

A draft of the timeline is available on the CC4E website, cc4e.org.

To reach Teresa Ristow, call 970-871-4206, email tristow@SteamboatToday.com or follow her on Twitter @TeresaRistow

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