New Faculty And Staff Members Join Our Ranks

We’re not exactly a revolving door here at Eagle Rock, but staff members do come and go on occasion, as was the case this summer when we said farewell to last year’s Public Allies Fellows and a handful of staff members.

And now we’re turning around and tossing down the welcome mat for eight new full-time staffers — some of whom we already know who have taken on new positions, and some who are brand new to our mountain side high school.

Without further ado, let’s introduce our new staff members, in no particular order:

Brighid_Scanlon_Eagle_RockBrighid Scanlon, World Languages Instructional Specialist, Ponderosa House Parent

Brighid has a Master of Arts degree in foreign language pedagogy (Spanish focus) from the University of Delaware Newark, Del., and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the same institution in Spanish studies and mass communication.

Recent Eagle Rockers will recall that Brighid was the World Languages Fellow two years ago, and this past year was the interim performance and music instructor after Ike Leslie moved on. She will be co-house parenting this year with second-year Public Allies Science Fellow, Sara Benge.

Dan-Hoffman-Eagle-RockDan Hoffman, Language Arts Instructional Specialist

Dan received his teaching certification in secondary education and social studies From Prescott College after earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Urban & Environmental Policy from Occidental College in Los Angeles.

Some of you will recognize Dan from his year as the Eagle Rock/Public Allies Societies and Cultures Fellow in 2009-10. Dan returns to Eagle Rock having worked at Voyager Academy High School in Durham N.C., as a curriculum specialist and social studies teacher.

Dan will join the Ponderosa House team.

Diego-Duran-Medina-Eagle-RockDiego Duran-Medina, Societies Cultures Instructional Specialist

Diego’s impressive creds include a Bachelor of Arts degree from Colgate University; a Masters of Arts degree from New York University; and, a Masters of Education degree from Teachers College, Columbia University. While at Columbia, he studied educational administration at The Klingenstein Center for Independent School Leadership.

Diego has extensive experience with independent schools, having worked at the Punahou School  (Honolulu, HI) and The Edmund Burke School (Washington, DC).

He will join the Juniper House Team.

Stephanie Dixon, Registrar and Life After Eagle Rock Counselor

Stephanie worked for five years as a career and post-secondary counselor and teacher in the high-need Denver Public Schools that featured a diverse population of young people between 14 and 24 years of age — most with multiple obstacles to educational success.

She was also a Continue reading…

Saying Goodbye To Six Eagle Rock Faculty Members

Goodbye-Image-Eagle-Rock-FacultyA half dozen of our faculty members are moving on, as they say — departing our campus for new ventures, but doubtless with a look behind at what they accomplished and experienced during their times here at Eagle Rock.

It goes without saying we’re going to miss them, and it’s also probably unnecessary to say we wish them well, because they’ve been receiving hugs, handshakes and tears since they announced their plans. It’s fairly obvious we want the best for them in their new pursuits.

Among those departing are Karen Ikegami, Holly Takashima, Berta Guillen, Ike Leslie, Jonna Book and Denise Lord. For each of these faculty, we’re devoting space below focused on what transpired for them professionally while here at Eagle Rock, and where they’re off to — or where they’ve already arrived.

Karen Ikegami came to Eagle Rock in 2008 as the math instructional specialist and also became the Juniper houseparent that same year. Karen is staying in Colorado and is working at Thomas Jefferson High School in Denver. She will be the Wallace Fellow Principal Resident and will be working on getting leadership training and her principal license through Get Smart Schools.

Holly Takashima started here stint here in 2011 as the English fellow, and then was hired as the English instructional specialist, becoming the Lodgepole houseparent in January of last year. Holly has moved to Nashville to be with partner Brandon, and has been hired on at John Overton Comprehensive High School, teaching American literature to high school juniors.

Berta Guillen became the Societies and Cultures fellow when she joined the Eagle Rock School staff back in 2008, and was soon thereafter hired on as the Continue reading…

We’re Hiring: Job Openings At Eagle Rock

Eagle-Rock-School-PhotoAccording to the latest figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there are roughly 4 million job openings in the United States, of which 76,000 or so are in the public and private education sectors. If you take away our current job openings, no one at the BLS would notice, but here at Eagle Rock, every position matters, including these positions that we’re now recruiting for:

Working at Eagle Rock isn’t for everyone, which begs the question… Who is our ideal applicant? Well, for starters, we’re interested in people who believe in an educational process that supports a diverse range of high school students in finding and nurturing their gifts and talents, rather than simply teaching to standardized tests and curricula.

We’re also interested in hearing from people who believe in the potential associated with reengaging youth in their own education, and along those lines, who would like to Continue reading…

2013 Colorado Flood Update: We’re Asking Everybody to Step Up to the Plate

Editor’s Note: It’s a bad use of an idiom, but we’re not out of the woods yet when it comes to the devastating flooding that visited our area of Colorado like an unpopular substitute teacher this past month. But just as Eagle Rock is now a designated National School of Character, we’re going to have the opportunity to prove we earned that honor this coming semester. Here’s an update of Jeff Liddle’s latest email to parents, sponsors and students.

By Jeff Liddle, Head of School

Earlier today, we sent out a memo by email to parents, sponsors and students in an attempt to bring everybody up to date on the recent flooding in Colorado and how we intend to conduct business this trimester. For starters, we’ve arrived at a start date for this trimester and that date is Sunday, Sept. 29th for veteran students. The trimester will end on Saturday, Dec. 14th to ensure we have time to fit in the normal amount of credit.

Our email message to students, parents and sponsors outlines flights, carpooling options, and other logistical issues, but what I want to discuss with you here is what our students can expect from us when they walk back on campus later this month, and what we expect from them.

First off, our campus is in fine shape. Not so for the town of Estes Park and everything else down the canyons. Fact is, by sometime next month, there will only be one route  in and out of town, and that’s Highways 7-119-70. And while that route is  in good shape, the commute to and from Denver International Airport is about three hours. Other roads will eventually open, but we don’t have a solid indication yet as to when those events will occur.

The good news is the utilities are consistent and they are on. The gas, water, electricity, sewage, Internet, and phones are all working. Also working are the merchants in town, including those at the Safeway market, gas stations, coffee shops, the library, and many local shops. And we are getting food deliveries to campus with no problem.

However, access in and out of Estes Park remains a problem. That means medical and mental health services that we typically get in the valley will be difficult to access. Check with us if you have a concern about such facilities. Also, there’s no easy access to the towns of Continue reading…

What It Means to be a National School of Character

One of the major highlights we all shared here at Eagle Rock late last year was the honor of being designated as a National School of Character.

National School of Character

Dan Condon (far right) representing Eagle Rock at the 2012 National Schools of Character ceremony at the National Forum on Character Education.

It’s quite an accomplishment, but what exactly does it mean to be a school of character? Those learning institutions that are designated as National Schools of Character (NSOC) have all demonstrated through a rigorous evaluation process that character development has had a positive impact on academics, student behavior, and school climate.

And these so-honored institutions aren’t expected to sit back and glory in their uniqueness as pillars of character. Instead, schools like ours here at Eagle Rock are fully expected to serve as models for other academic learning centers, helping them to achieve the same results.

Eagle Rock was one of two dozen schools and a school district that were recognized in late 2012, and we have earned the distinction of serving as a National School of Character for the next five years. Before we advanced to the national level for review, Eagle Rock was named a Continue reading…