Printed letters, June 17, 2011

I would like to strongly urge the District 51 School Board to abandon the possibility of closing Scenic Elementary School.

One of the biggest contentions is the feeling that Scenic needs to be remodeled to be less noisy and safer. Yes, one day, when we have money to spare, it might be a good idea to update the school.  Granted, the design is a bit unusual, but it functions. Whatever the Board’s design objections are, don’t tell the principal, the staff or the students. They love their school.

As a parent of two Scenic kids, I love their school, too. And it has absolutely nothing to do with the physical design of the school. But, it has everything to do what is contained within that building. You can’t touch it, but you can feel it.

It’s called caring, and it starts at the top with the principal, Doug Levinson. This man goes far beyond the call of duty and has devoted his career to making a difference in the lives of our children. It isn’t a living for Doug, it is a way of life. His wonderful attitude and aptitude are apparently contagious, because the entire staff shares his same enthusiasm. Each and every one of them!

They teach our children to work hard and be nice, and they too will make a difference in this world. But the difference with this school is that the staff doesn’t just talk the talk, they walk the walk. And 240 children walk in their footsteps, with their heads held high and their minds growing each and every day of every school year.

Yes, the building might need remodeling. But the school housed within that building is priceless.

SHEREE BLAIR

Grand Junction

Student wants to remain at Scenic Elementary

I go to Scenic Elementary. I’m going to be in the third grade and I am 8 years old. I’ve been going to Scenic since kindergarten and I love it there.

My teachers have helped me when it was hard for me, and Mrs. Nelson especially helped learn to read. Now she may be losing her job. The principal greeted me every morning and made sure I was safe.

I don’t want to go to any other grade school so please don’t close Scenic.

MIKAYLA LOUGHLIN

Grand Junction

If we can’t save school, keep Scenic’s staff

Having been recently notified that the School Board for District 51 is suggesting that Scenic Elementary be closed for the 2012-2013 school year, I have to question the decision process of the board.

I understand that tougher economic times call for spending cuts, but it makes no sense to close the best performing school, regardless of its location. Principal Levinson, his staff, and teachers are absolutely amazing, and if we want to best serve our community and our children it is vital that we keep this team together, even if they are moved to a different location.

Any intelligent business or organization that is looking to do more with less should not look to lay off the best employees who provide the highest results. All we have to do is look around at the other schools in District 51 and we can quickly determine that too many are not performing as the community needs.

Let’s shake up those facilities and put this amazing team in place. Wherever they go, I will want all of my children to follow. The school board must be encouraged to think outside the box. If we can’t save the Scenic Elementary location, then we must save the most important parts — Mr. Levinson’s education team, whole and intact.

JOSHUA P. STARR

Grand Junction

Hickenlooper listened to Coloradans’ concerns

The announcement recently as stated in the story “Governor vetoes fees on kids’ health care program” proves that the voices of Colorado’ families are being heard.

As faith leaders who are part of the PICO Clergy Action Network, our members joined with many others to encourage Gov. Hickenlooper to protect the health coverage of Colorado’s children. We applaud his decision to prevent these additional fees and his commitment to find oither ways to address the state’s rising health care costs.

Healthy insurance premiums have already grown twice as fast as the average Coloradan’s wages and are expected to take up 40 percent of the average Colorado family’s income in the next few years.

Gov. Hickenlooper saw the financial and economic impact of these rising costs for everyday Coloradans and stepped in to protect the many children and families who would face the burden.

It’s clear that the voices of Coloradans matter.

Positive change like this will continue to happen when we tell our leaders that getting the care we need, when we need it, shouldn’t require managing unpredictable costs.

Thanks for listening, governor.

REV. DAN WILKIE

United Church of Christ

REV. MIKE BURR

Koinonia Church

Grand Junction


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