Creede Board of Education receives financial report


CREEDE — The Creede School District Board of Education received a finance report during its meeting on March 27 and learned it will need to address its teaching salary schedule.

The finance report was given to the board by Lucinda Carpenter. Carpenter said that the school had finished their annual audit and though some of the year’s revenue was lagging, more grant funding would be added to the budget in coming weeks and that the budget would be back on schedule.

In addition to the report on the budget, Carpenter notified the board that some of the district’s teachers were below the required state pay grade and to catch them up, the board would need to consider appropriating funds differently to make up for the gap in pay.

“At this point, I think we need to take some time to think about this and what we want to prioritize. We need to look at the salary schedule and see how much we feel like we can do. We need to look and see how important we feel about encouraging our teachers to increase their education levels and we need to figure out what we want to do,” said Carpenter.

Creede Superintendent Keith Crispell said he had contacted the Moffat School District and they were looking at the same issue as were many schools across the state.

Carpenter informed the board that the Center School District had just received grant funding to help fill their salary gap but that she was concerned when the grant funding ran out.

“Once that grant funding is gone what’s next? What happens,” she said.

The board closed the conversation with Carpenter stating that they would look into the salary gap issue in coming weeks and that they would have to find a sustainable, long-term solution that would allow the district to pay the bills and provide for their teachers. It was stated during the conversation that no state money would be provided to help fill the salary gap and that it was up to the districts to figure out a solution to the problem.

During the first part of the meeting, Board President Casey Adelman read open meeting law policies to the board and attending audience members stating that though the board opted to include public comment periods during their meetings, open meeting laws did not require the board to include that section on their agendas.

“We as a board feel it is important to hear from our public community members, teachers and staff and therefore have opted to host public comment periods during our meetings. We do not, by law, have to include them,” Adelman said.

At the beginning of every meeting hosted by the school board, rules for the public comment period are read to reiterate the board’s policies and procedures.