Superintendent hosts empty meeting |

Superintendent hosts empty meeting

Gary E. Salazar

— Not a single resident or parent showed up to meet with Hayden Superintendent Scott Mader Wednesday night to discuss the district’s impending decision to eliminate a high school social studies teaching position.

Mader was prepared to answer questions about the district’s decision to cut the position, which will eliminate four classes, and the budget.

“This is a small town,” Mader said. “I met with 10 parents last week. Word gets around fast.”

Mader scheduled the meeting because of numerous telephone calls he received from parents about the district’s decision to cut the teaching position held by Don Toy.

Administration has recommended Toy’s position be cut because of budgetary reasons.

Because of declining enrollment, the district is cutting the social studies position, along with a middle school special education teacher to save $72,000.

The school board will make a final decision on Toy’s status after a hearing, which is set for Aug. 28.

If the position is cut, Western civilization, sociology, psychology and American wars will not be offered to high school students this fall.

Of the classes, Western civilization was the only course offered to students for college credit. Mader stresses only these four courses will not be offered and are not required for students to graduate.

If the courses are cut, it leaves students with options of taking U.S. history and world geography, which are required, and government and world history.

“We are offering the basics,” Mader said. “We need to concentrate on the basics.”

Students interested in taking Western civilization, psychology or sociology will have the option to take these classes through the district’s agreement with Colorado Northwestern Community College.

Students can take these courses and earn not only high school credit but also college credit, Mader said.

“Students who pass the class will have their tuition paid by the district,” Mader said.

As the first day of school approaches, the district plans to contact every student who signed up for one of the classes being eliminated to change their schedules.

Mader expects students will be contacted by next week. A total of 19 students signed up for Western civilization, 14 for sociology and six each for American wars and psychology.

To prepare for the expected loss in enrollment, the district moved forward this summer with making cuts to its teaching force, Mader said.

The social studies position was targeted because that was an area administration feels comfortable with scaling back, Mader said.

Mader urges residents or parents who have questions or concerns about this issue to talk to him.

“I want to give people the opportunity,” Mader said. “My door is open any time anyone wants to come and talk to me.”

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