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A first day of unfamiliar faces

Routt County schools begin year with many new teachers

Routt County's new public school teachers

Hayden School District:

Hayden Valley Elementary School

- Sally Ziegler, special education

- Melany Neton, kindergarten

- Hadley Graham, first grade

- Jane Moncus, second grade

- Ginny Glenn, physical education/ music

- Derek Hurshman, music

Hayden Middle School

- Susan Koehler, art

- Derek Hurshman, music, band

Hayden High School

- Susan Koehler, art

- Amy Parrott, English

- Dean Massey, science

- Andy Dunda, social studies

- Jeff Steinsberger, woodshop

- Derek Hurshman, music, band

Steamboat Springs School District:

Strawberry Park Elementary School

- Susan Carlson, English as a Second Language

- Tiffany Gebhart, English as a Second Language

- Matthew Carter, third grade

- Anne Davidson, special education

- Chris Elliott, fifth grade

- Becky Hammond, special education

- Karen Kutska, second grade, third grade

- Alison Hobson, counselor

Soda Creek Elementary School

- Rebecca Dybas, kindergarten

- Janel Florquist, fifth grade

- JoDett Freeman, second grade, third grade

- Mary Roley, special education

- Kristi Spence, fourth grade

- Susan Carlson, English as a Second Language

- Tiffany Gebhart, English as a Second Language

Steamboat Springs Middle School

- Alison Hobson, counselor

- Heide Doyle, social studies

- Cyd Franken, reading

- Cathy Hillman-Girard, English as a Second Language

- Pam Morgan, Spanish

- Bridget Seidel, Spanish

Steamboat Springs High School

- Janet Crowe, physical education

- Nicole Decrette, media specialist

- Stephen Fletcher, math

- Leslie Gumbrecht, English as a Second Language

- Justin Pacheck, counselor

- Lance Pugh, physiology

- Lisa Racine, Spanish

- Jenny Siler, special education

- Floyd Trujillo, Spanish

- Carissa Unrein, math

- Nichole Young, choir

South Routt School District:

South Routt Elementary School

- Richel Eskridge, first grade

- Jake Eskridge, second grade

- Courteney Famulare, third grade

- Rita Herold, Title I

- Don Williams, music

Soroco Middle School

- Nick Marzano, English

- David Bruner, physical education

Soroco High School

- David Bruner, physical education

- Shirley Belz, vocational business

— First-day jitters aren’t just for students. Teachers get them, too.

“I’m just jumping in there getting my feet wet,” Derek Hurshman, Hayden’s new music and band teacher, said last week.

Hurshman, a first-year teacher who is new to the area, said he is looking forward to meeting his students and stirring up the music program in Hayden.



“I’m hoping to bring a lot of excitement to the program. From what I hear, it was a really strong, positive program in the past, but that in the last few years the numbers have started dropping,” he said. “I am just really excited to get the kids excited about music. I love music, and I am hoping to pass that on to my students.”

Hurshman and 10 other new Hayden teachers attended an orientation session Friday.



Mike Luppes, Hayden’s superintendent, said he couldn’t be happier with the additions.

“We have a great group of teachers here. We got all of our No. 1 picks,” he said. “We have a real good mix.”

All three Routt County public school districts are welcoming a mix of first-year teachers, teachers new to the area and returning teachers or previously retired teachers.

In Steamboat Springs, Superintendent Donna Howell said her district has added several new teaching positions for the 2006-07 school year, which begins Monday.

“We’re really excited to be adding four new, full-time English as a Second Language teachers, and some gifted-and-talented teachers,” she said. “This is already looking like a very exciting, positive year. It’s going to be very upbeat.”

Soroco Middle School and High School Principal James Chamberlin echoed Howell’s excitement.

“We’re only two days in so far, but it’s like we’re already two weeks in,” he said Friday.

Chamberlin said South Routt’s secondary schools have only three new teachers this fall.

In addition to new physical education teacher David Bruner, the secondary campuses welcome two familiar faces – AmeriCorps volunteer-turned-English teacher Nick Marzano and retired teacher Shirley Belz, who will teach secondary vocational business.

“By having two familiar faces back this fall, we’ve really been able to hit the ground running,” Chamberlin said. “The kids are very excited about that, too.”

– To reach Alexis DeLaCruz, call 871-4234

or e-mail adelacruz@steamboatpilot.com


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