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El Paso County Colorado District 49

D 49 board update

All D 49 board members and about 45 others attended the February board of education meeting. Jeff Husted and Steve Cutler asked to be removed from the mill levy override task force and Dave Dempsey was removed for failing to attend without giving notice. The task force added three members: Andrew Sherbo and Rebecca Mac Learn from Colorado Springs and Roxanne Guidichessi from Falcon.The board unanimously approved the following:

  • A bus eligibility exception policy that allows parents who can demonstrate a family hardship, to apply for an eligibility exception; the exemption application form will be available online at or call 719-495-0020.
  • An amendment to the GE Johnson construction agreement for contract changes for the new Falcon High School in the amount of $225,404.
  • An amendment to the contract with LKA partners for architectural services in the amount of $61,582.
Eric Paugh, elementary learning services specialist, and Martha Franks, district positive behavior support director, presented information on the positive behavior support program, a Colorado Department of Education initiative for improving student behavior by identifying and rewarding desired behavior and tracking undesired behavior so that it can be prevented or disciplined.PBS has been piloted at Falcon Elementary School and four other elementary and middle schools in D 49 over the past year. Rebecca Thompson, assistant principal at Odyssey Elementary School, presented information on their PBS implementation program, referred to as STARS, an acronym for desired behaviors: safe, trustworthy, accountable, responsible and successful. Thompson presented evidence showing that PBS has significantly reduced disciplinary problems.Superintendent Wright has already approved an expenditure of $71,500 to expand PBS to Meridian Ranch, Woodmen Hills and Evans elementary schools, as well as Skyview Middle School. The district plans to implement PBS in high schools as well.Doug Peden, executive director of human resources, presented a proposal for the 2007-2008 school year. Classes will start Aug. 6 and end May 23. The final calendar will be approved in March.Open forum:Alexandra Eichenberger expressed her concern about property within the district that was recently rezoned from commercial to residential. She said because commercial property generates more revenue, D 49 will collect less revenue but have more students. Board member David Stark said the developer is donating $2 million to the district, which will help with the construction of the new high school.Jody Fletcher, military liaison from Ft. Carson, complimented the district for implementing its bus eligibility exception policy, saying it will be a big help to military families. She suggested that the district count military families earlier than December.

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