Turn The Page: Fall Into Winter
Lake County’s first significant winter weather advisory will remain in effect until 9 p.m. tonight, Monday, October 21, according to Lake County Office of Emergency Management Director Cailee Hamm in a Sunday evening notice to local officials and media outlets.
- What: Snow expected. Total snow accumulations of up to 5 inches. Winds gusting as high as 55 mph causing areas of blowing snow.
- Where: Western Mosquito Range and East Lake County Above 11000 Feet and Eastern Sawatch Mountains Above 11000 Feet.
- When: From midnight tonight to 9 p.m. MDT Monday, Oct. 21.
- Impacts: Plan on slippery road conditions. Blowing snow could significantly reduce visibility. The cold wind chills as low as 15 below zero could result in hypothermia if precautions are not
Forecasters are calling for unsettled weather throughout the week including snow showers. Daytime temperatures will hover around 40 degrees, with nighttime temperatures dipping into the single digits. It’s certainly that time of year when concerns shift between wildfire danger as conditions still remain dry and windy, and the need to prepare for the colder months. Sunday’s 2-3 inches of measurable snow in town surely grew the list of winter-prep chores for many who live at 10,000 feet.
“Since we are still in fire restrictions and going back and forth between winter weather/red flag warnings, my concern is the general public not being prepared for freezing temperatures and impacts” stated Director Hamm. This time of year between the fall and winter seasons, fire safety should be in focus for families as they start-up heating units and systems that have remained dormant during the warmer weather months. “Be safe, stay warm, and check-in with your neighbors!” concluded Hamm.
It’s also a good time to encourage residents to sign up for the Lake County Emergency Alert System. It’s free and not too invasive. So if you live here, own property here or love someone who lives here, SIGN UP HERE. This system will alert you via phone when there are any emergency situations happening in Leadville land Lake County.
The Road Report
While the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) has not officially closed the highest paved throughfare across the Continental Divide, more commonly known as Independence Pass, this week could swing the gates shut as the seasonal pass is not maintained during the colder, snowier months. While last night’s CDOT camera image of Independence Pass reported icy and snow-packed conditions, as of early Monday morning the camera was no longer working. No official word from CDOT. Stay Tuned.
As for Highway 24 commuters, wouldn’t it be great to get a camera? Any ideas? Until then, LT can report that it received the following construction update from CDOT regarding the next phase of construction through Minturn HERE.
There is NO SCHOOL for students in the Lake County School District today. County and City road crews will be switching gears to snow removal as forecasters call for on and off snow throughout the week.
Stay tuned and plugged into Leadville Today via any of the social media platforms or email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Share your photos and any weather-related news! Stay warm and travel safely.
Top Priority for State Rep: Reading
By Joyce Rankin, Colorado Board of Education
I taught public school fifth-graders a long time ago, sometimes called “Old School.” At least it seems like it these days. However, there’s one thing that never changes: Reading. If you’ve been reading my columns this past year, you know that I believe Reading should be the highest teaching priority. Since you are reading this column, you, too, have learned to read. But what are teachers required to teach and what demands priority in their classroom?
First, we look at all things that determine a curriculum. In Colorado, the local board of education and the district make determinations about classroom curriculum. Here are a few classroom subjects that we frequently hear are priorities these days, social-emotional instruction, climate change, sex education, bullying, school safety, active shooter drills, anxiety coping, comfort animals (college for this one), mental health, vaping, food insecurity, suicide prevention, trauma, feeling unsafe (fear), character building and mindfulness (to name a few).
How do teachers determine where they spend valuable classroom time? I hear selecting curriculum can be, and is, overwhelming for teachers. By the way, did I forget to mention Reading and Writing? What’s important, and how does a teacher prioritize?
To me, Reading should be first and foremost on a teacher’s list. Evidence-based research states that students between grades K-3 should be taught reading skills for at least ninety minutes per day. For every year they are behind grade level, an additional 15 minutes should be added. Why? Because the most important role in education is to prepare children to become successful readers. This is the mission of the READ Act (Reading to Ensure Academic Success) that I’ve been sharing with community members in my district.
In September, I was in Moffat county, a school district where teachers have learned the Science of Teaching Reading. In this district Elementary students have experienced considerable achievement growth, surpassing the state average, since their teachers were trained. I’ve also been in New Castle, Mancos, Norwood, Durango, Pagosa Springs, and Pueblo. In October, I’m scheduled to speak in Montrose, Grand Junction, and Steamboat Springs. Some subjects are challenging to measure; but, evidence-based reading instruction is measurable, is proven to work, and leads to success. In kindergarten through third grade, students learn to read then they read to learn. And, quite possibly, acquire information, not from being told, but by reading firsthand.
If you know of additional subjects that are prioritized higher than Reading, send me an email. And please don’t include math, science, social studies, art and music. That’s “Old school!” email@example.com.
Joyce Rankin is on the State Board of Education representing the Third Congressional District which includes Leadville and Lake County. She writes the monthly column, “Across the Street” to share with constituents in the 29 counties she represents. The Department of Education, where the State Board of Education meets, is located across the street from the Capitol. She can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org.