A proposal to combine Crawford Elementary and North Fork Montessori School met little resistance along its path to completion last week. The final step was approval by the Delta County School Board, which came with a 5-0 vote at the board's Dec. 12 meeting.
There's just one caveat — enrollment must reach 100 by March 1 or the issue will go back before the school board. That's the number of kindergarten-first grade students needed to ensure the school remains economically viable.
Montessori is providing the curriculum, Crawford the facility for a school of innovation that school board members believe will be a "win-win" situation for students, their families and the community of Crawford.
There will no longer be a waiting list for the Montessori school, and the school will remain a source of pride for the Crawford community.
The name of the school has yet to be determined, said superintendent Caryn Gibson. Staffing details must also be addressed, beginning with administrators Bill Eyler and Doug Egging. Eyler, Montessori's head of school, and Egging, Crawford Elementary School principal, were recognized for the work they put into making this proposal a reality.
There will certainly be some staff displacement, Gibson said. Teachers who wish to remain in Crawford will have to attain Montessori certification; otherwise they'll be given an opportunity to transfer. On average, 35 to 40 openings are created districtwide each year by teachers who resign or retire.
As all the details of a three-year contract are worked out, consideration will also be given to use of the Montessori building located near Hotchkiss High School.
Among the options being considered, Gibson said, are using the building for the North Fork Opportunity School, an early childhood center or a career training facility. Special services or the district office could potentially be relocated from the Delta area to Hotchkiss. "We'll be looking at the pros and cons of all those options," she said.blog comments powered by Disqus