Tag Archives: Saguache School News

Saguache News – September 6

Saguache Grieves, Saguache Believes

The Superintendent’s Corner

By Travis Garoutte, Mountain Valley Schools, Saguache

August of 2018 was an incredibly hard month for the small community of Saguache. In that short timespan, hearts were broken over and over again by the passing of so many loved ones. I have seen the tears flow freely lately, and I struggle to make sense of it all. I do know that living in a small community is a blessing, a place where you are more than just a number, more than just a face in the crowd. In Saguache, people are deeply connected and their lives touch each other in unique ways.

While Saguache grieves, it also believes in compassion and kindness. I have witnessed an amazing outpouring of comfort, support, and love these past few weeks during community vigils, memorials, athletic events, and daily interactions between caring people. I am proud to call Saguache my home.    

Football players dedication_school_Saguache Today_1

This weekend I watched our high school students come together and dedicate football and volleyball games in honor of friends and former teammates that were taken from this earth much too soon. Their dedication, cooperation, and effort produced some remarkable results. For the first time that I can remember, both teams won with impressive shutouts. The volleyball team won the match against Primero in three straight games (3-0), while the football team beat the Bulldogs by a score of 58-0. The human spirit never ceases to amaze me.

Volleyball players dedication_school_Saguache Today_1

I was equally impressed by the community support at our first home games against the Primero Bulldogs. The sizeable crowd was loud and proud as they cheered for the Mountain Valley/Moffat Indians. The games were so exciting that even the construction workers building our new school could be heard cheering from the platform west of the football field. After the games, as I was walking home, the construction crew stopped me and asked if I could get them some Mountain Valley shirts. It appears as though our athletes have some new fans!

School Construction_school_Saguache Today_1.jpeg

At a time when our community needed something positive, the “Field of Dreams” was completed just before our first football contest with Primero, allowing us to host home games in Saguache. I am so thankful that our community has chosen to stand up for our kids. Corey and Aubrey Hill, as well as the Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust, graciously allowed Mountain Valley to utilize the land east of the school as a football field for the 2018 season. Athletic Director Larry Joe Hunt, Facilities Director Anthony Salaz, and FCI Construction Superintendent Troy Sergesketter have put in countless hours prepping the new field. Joel Johnson, Justin Wilson, Michael Roberts, Scott Alexander and the football team also worked hard to help build their very own “Field of Dreams.” Thank you, Saguache!

Football players Filed of Dream_school_Saguache Today_1

It is my hope and prayer that we continue to rally around each other, not just during times of grief and struggle, but always. We are a stronger and more compassionate community because of the past few weeks. As we move forward, I hope everyone continues to focus on building positive relationships, connecting with neighbors, and supporting those in need. Together, we can and will make a difference.

 

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Saguache News – August 16

Dawn Breaks Over New Chapter, School Year 

New Dawn Over New School Year Saguache today

The dawn of a new morning breaks over the a new school year and a new school building for 2018-19. It’s back-to-school time in Saguache Today

Back-To-School. While these three little words evoke a variety of emotions this time of year, from a sad goodbye to the carefree days of summer, to the excitement of a new school year! But in Saguache Today, back-to-school is all about community and celebrating a new chapter for Mountain Valley Schools. And yes, well some back-to-school stuff too! So head on over to Mountain Valley School for their Open House Bar-b-que from 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.  Meet the teachers and learn all about the school year. Enrollment packets are currently available and may be picked up from 8 .m. – 4 p.m. in the office.

As most readers know. The Mountain Valley School District is currently underway with a lala million dollar renovation project that will bring the buildings and facility up to a 21st century safe, learning environment. It’s an exciting time for teachers, students and everyone involved in education in Saguache Today. Come and support their efforts and see how the new building is coming along!

School blessing

The Mountain Valley School held a land blessing ceremony in May to commemorate the ground breaking for the new school building which was passed by voters in November 2017. To see more photos, CLICK HERE. Photo: Saguache Today/Kathy Bedell

Last November, Saguache County voter’s approved a $3.7 million Building Excellent Schools Today (BEST) grant initiative. Since then, the district has kept an aggressive timeline in order to meet construction goals. Early this summer, school and community officials welcomed state and corporate partners in a community ground-breaking ceremony. Come and check out the progress since then!Back to school BBQ

Saguache News – May 21

Three’s a Charm: Blessings in Saguache Today

After months of planning and preparing the blessed event has finally arrived – in THREE very meaningful ways. First, Congratulations to the Class of 2018! You did it! Nine students from Mountain Valley Schools (MVS) turned their tassels last Saturday at a meaningful ceremony attended by parents, family and friends, as teachers and staff wished them all the best as they head off to new endeavors and a bright future. 

MVS Graduates 2018

The Graduates from Mountain Valley Schools, Class of 2018. Congratulations! Photo: Lacy Nicole Harford-Reed‎.

Second, while graduating seniors commemorated an ending,  it was a blessed new beginning and congratulations to Mountain Valley School (MVS) Superintendent Travis Garoutte and his wife Amy who welcomed a baby girl into their family on May 15. Welcome to Saguache Today, little Avery!

Thirdly, there will be another “blessing” event this Wednesday, May 23 as the MVS holds its ground breaking ceremony for the new school. In conjunction with the Southern Ute Indian Tribe, school officials and staff, students, parents and community members will gather at 2 p.m. for the official Ute Tribal Blessing of the land the new facility will be built on.

It’s a time of endings and new beginnings in Saguache Today. Be a part of it all!Sag_School Ground Breaking

The Superintendent’s Corner

By Travis Garoutte, MVS Superintendent

You have probably heard the famous quote, “When one door closes another opens.” Scientist, inventor, and innovator Alexander Graham Bell is credited with this quote; however, what he actually said is a little longer and a bit more meaningful. The full quote reads like this: “When one door closes another door opens, but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us.”

Life is constantly changing as we experience growth and improvement, as well as loss and suffering. During my lifetime, I have had many doors close, and new ones have always opened up. Oftentimes, these changes did not make sense to me and I would spend my time looking at the closed door trying to understand the situation, always ignoring the possibilities of new doors opening up. In retrospect, as I get older (and hopefully wiser), I can clearly see why doors of the past have closed, always leading to open doors full of personal growth, improvement, and lessons learned along the way.

Just recently, a new door opened for us, a door that will forever change our lives. On May 15, 2018, our daughter Avery Ann Jenine was born. After months of anxiety, fear, anticipation, and excitement, Amy and I have a new baby girl and we are blessed beyond belief. I had worried that the door to my life as I knew it was closing; however, the moment Avery was born, it was love at first sight and that little girl stole my heart. It seems as though I spent a lot of time worrying about the closing door without even realizing how amazing it would be to step through the open door.

Avery Ann Jenine Baby

Avery was welcomed into the Garoutte family on May 15. Photo by Stephanie Buechler.

During my five years at Mountain Valley School, I have seen many doors close and open. After the door closed for me as a teacher at Sargent School, I became a 6th-grade teacher to a class full of awesome kids at Mountain Valley. That door closed and a new door opened as PreK-12 principal of Mountain Valley School, where I had an entire school full of amazing students! Shortly thereafter, the principal door closed and the superintendent door opened. I miss the daily interactions with kids that I used to have as a teacher, but I am honored to work towards improving Mountain Valley School District for our students, families, and community.

We are headed toward the future of Mountain Valley School, and doors are opening and closing at a rapid rate. Abatement and demolition projects will begin in early June, starting with the cafeteria, woodshop, and bus barn. The Groundbreaking and Blessing Ceremony will take place on Wednesday, May 23 at 2 p.m. Mr. Hanley Frost from the Southern Ute Indian Tribe’s Culture and Education Department will be on campus to share Ute history of Saguache and bless our new school. FCI Constructors, Treanor HL Architects & Engineers, and NV5 will be on site as well. Everyone is invited to join us as the new Mountain Valley School construction doors open and we begin building the future!

As the school year ends and we begin summer break, change will be inevitable. Remember Alexander Graham Bell’s advice and take some time to reflect and enjoy the past while looking optimistically towards the future.

Saguache News – December 12

Preparing Students for an Unforeseen Future

By Joyce Rankin, 3rd Congressional District, State Board of Education

Joyce Rankin

Joyce Rankin

Road Trip: I attended the Summit on Education Reform in Nashville, Tennessee. Jeb Bush opened the conference and repeated a quote from the first conference in 2008: “The country’s school system is an 8-track in an iPod world. The irony is that we’re still an 8-track but the iPod is gone.”

Speakers and panelists from across the nation discussed directions education is taking and how our schools can prepare students for and ever changing future.

Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, spoke about school choice and the role of parents in selecting the best school for their children. She continues to be an advocate for school choice to advance opportunities for all children. Several sessions highlighted success stories from students and parents who had taken advantage of school choice in their communities.  At the conclusion Ms. DeVos stated “The rising generation represents 100 percent of our future; let’s give them nothing less than 100 percent of our effort.”

In a general session we heard about the importance of technology courses at all grade levels to prepare for future jobs that we can’t currently define.  Jeb Bush described it like a quarterback throwing to a receiver. “You don’t throw directly at the receiver, but where he will be when the ball is caught.” We must teach all students the basics of technology so that they can meet the changing needs of an unforeseen skillset of the future.

One speaker said there were over 3.5 million truck drivers in the United States. What will happen when we embrace driverless cars and trucks?  This was just one example of how jobs will experience change in the future. It’s important to prepare students to adapt to changes so that the economy thrives and our citizens lead satisfying lives.

Colorado currently uses blended learning and online courses to enable students to learn skills that would otherwise be unavailable at their school.  An example is a student in middle school currently enrolled in an advanced Calculus course online. He is joined by three other students, in various grade levels, from other school districts across the state.  Technology is opening up many opportunities that weren’t available even two years ago. It is also moving so rapidly that we need to teach the basics of Computer Science beginning in Kindergarten. And yes, there are fun applications currently available, online, for Kindergarten students.  Future careers will depend on this knowledge combined with creativity and flexibility to adapt.

The Colorado Department of Education with community participation is reviewing the Colorado State Standards and adding new standards for Computer Science. We need to prepare future teachers by including Computer Science in all teacher preparation programs.

Moving from an “eight track system” will not be easy, however with “100 percent of our effort” we can give our students a chance for a successful future.

Joyce Rankin writes the monthly column, “Across the Street” to share with constituents in her district, which includes Saguache County.  The Department of Education, where the State Board of Education meets, is located across the street from the Capitol. She is also a Legislative Assistant for Representative Bob Rankin.