RBC I The Rio Blanco Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES), which is composed of the combined Meeker and Rangely school board members, met March 12 in Meeker to review the preliminary budget for next year and to assess Executive Director Teresa Schott.
Rio Blanco County is one of very few in the state that has established its own, single-county BOCES program. The meeting was chaired by Meeker School Board Member Kurt Blunt.
The BOCES board reviewed Schott’s evaluation in executive session and then announced unanimously that they will negotiate a new contract with her for the next school year, hoping she is willing to stay on.
Rio Blanco BOCES runs on an annual budget of $2.3 million. The preliminary budget for the 2015-16 fiscal year is nearly $2.5 million. This slightly increased budget for next year includes a psychologist and a nearly full-time (four-day) nurse in Meeker and expanding the Rangely school nurse position to four days.
Other BOCES employees include the administrative staff of three in Rangely and the coordinator of student services located in Meeker. Support staff, typically shared between the districts, include occupational and physical therapists, speech and language professionals, special education teachers in each school, resource teachers in both high schools, gifted and talented coordinators, two preschool teachers, a number of para-educators in each community and a School to Work Alliance Program (SWAP) coordinator.
The Meeker and Rangely districts jointly provide about $1,587,000 of the county BOCES budget.
The board approved receiving its usual and critical grant monies from the Colorado Preschool Program (CPP), the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and SWAP.
The board wished to remind residents of the “birth to five-year-old” children’s health fairs to be held at the County 4-H building in Meeker on April 10 and at the Early Education Center administration building in Rangely on April 24.
These fairs provide early screenings, dental hygiene and county health vaccinations among other services. April is also the Month of the Child and Child Abuse Prevention Month.
The board accepted end-of-the-school-year resignations from Rangely employees school nurse Mary Ann Allred, para-educator Jen Fortunato and preschool teacher Nedra Sandels.
The next BOCES board meeting is May 21 in Rangely.
More information about BOCES, its services and resources, can be found at www.rioblancoboces.org.