From My Window… Report addresses Meeker schools; CNCC has busy week

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From my window I saw a very involved, well-thought-out, thorough report called, “A Vision for Strategic Planning” that was “respectfully submitted to the Strategic Planning Project and the Administration and Board of Directors of Meeker School District Re-1” by Robert D. Amick.
After perusing all 37 pages of the document it became quite obvious that this was an intricate, complicated and long-term attempt to bring the Meeker School District into the 21st century regarding facilities, programs and, at the same time, placing much more emphasis on the arts within the school district.
I sat down with Amick on Friday for about 80 minutes, and it became immediately obvious that this intelligent, well-traveled and much-involved individual has a vision that is based on caring about what happens to the schools he attended as a child as well as the schools and children of today and tomorrow.
If half of what Amick is proposing in this “vision” were to ever see fruition, the Meeker School District and its schools would be and could be national standard-bearers on what a small school district can do to compete with schools many times the size.
We will get into more detail in next week’s Herald Times, because it is going to take some time to simplify what Amick would like to do and what he is proposing can be done.
It will take open minds on the part of the superintendent and school board, it will take creativity on the parts of many on how to raise the funds to make this dream a reality, and it will take the involvement of more than just a few people in the Meeker area.
This could well be a project for all ages, but the more people involved in this vision, the easier it will be to actually create the vision.
It creates a realistic blueprint for the future of the school buildings and arts/cultural offerings through the schools. It is definitely worth looking at and Amick is worth listening to.
Stay tuned.

It didn’t really take long for spring to pop up its green head around here.
It officially became spring on March 22, just about the time the White River was breaking through the ice with open stretches of water and a few brave souls could be seen along its banks out there in the small openings looking for their first fish of the year.
On Monday of last week, I noticed that the grass was still brown and that the buds on trees and sprouting flowers were still few and far between — a harbinger that spring might still be a couple of weeks away.
By Friday, however, the grass was completely green, the trees were budding and even a few early-bird flowers were breaking through the ground.
But perhaps the best sign that spring is here is that the car washes have been packed and many people were seen washing their cars (which are actually mostly pickups and SUVs) at home – hoses and buckets in hand.

Rangely is going to be a quite-busy location this next week or so with several activities for Colorado Northwest Community College.
The annual CNCC Foundation Dinner Dance is Saturday at 6 p.m. in the Weiss Colorado Room, and that will be followed by two events on Tuesday.
On Tuesday morning, CNCC will hold the culmination of its 50th anniversary celebration at 11 a.m. Lunch will be served to the community and activities will include the unveiling of the new CNCC Spartan statue and the burial of a time capsule.
On Tuesday evening at 6 p.m. is the CNCC annual Honors Banquet, to be held in the Weiss Colorado Room. This is a great way to honor the students and personnel at the college for doing an outstanding job during the past year.
That isn’t however, the extent of public events at CNCC during April and May.
The next Community Networking meeting will be held April 23 at noon, with Eric Kuhn, the general manager of the Colorado River District, as guest speaker. And the culmination of the school year comes on May 11 at 2 p.m. in the Weiss Colorado Room as the college hosts the 2013 CNCC Commencement Exercises.

The not-so-glamorous but aptly-named After Birth Ball is also rapidly approaching – on April 20.
That is an annual event that seemingly all look forward to each spring in the Meeker area.
But it was ingenious planning by the Meeker Chamber of Commerce director and board members to add a series of general- and specific-interest workshops to the day’s activities since many ranchers from outlying areas will be in town for the day. Now they have something to do until the evening festivities get under way.
From Facebook marketing and livestock nutrition, to noxious weed management and Agritourism 101 to range and pasture management during a drought, a number of relevant issues will be discussed in the workshops, and there is no better way to catch up on current trends and new discoveries than with a good annual update regarding the industry.
Good thinking, chamber!

The last view out my window is of the “April is Child Abuse Prevention Month” display on the lawn at the Rio Blanco County Courthouse.
It is difficult to come up with a more serious affliction within our society than child abuse. Child abuse appears behind many faces, such as physical abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, hunger and mental abuse. These are all forms of abuse that can scar a child for life.
Often times, too, it is a practice passed on from generation to generation because many children grow up thinking that what they are experiencing is normal, so they pass that same behavior on to their children.
Abuse is not normal. It is a vicious circle that can only be stopped at early signs, and it is important that each and every one of us recognize the symptoms.
The one simple thing that every individual member of society can do to help improve our country is to become familiar with the signs and symptoms of abuse and turn suspected cases over to the authorities.
The children gain, society gains and, in the long run, the abuser gains by being told that abuse will not be tolerated in any form.