Student tells trustees middle-school track is an eyesore

A middle-school student told trustees the track and field are in poor shape.

A middle-school student told trustees the track and field are in poor shape.

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A Churchill County Middle School student presented a thorough and informative report to the trustees last week showing the deteriorating condition of the school’s track and infield.

Liam Nelson spoke at the Churchill County School Board’s meeting on Wednesday. Before he compiled his presentation, Nelson said he’s talked to a countless number of people about the condition of the track and how it can be improved. He showed a photo of the track after a storm had moved through the valley.

“Whenever it rains, our track looks like this,” Nelson said, pointing to the mud.

He said the drains don’t work well and become plugged. Because of the dirt track, Nelson said windy conditions tend to blow dust into the students’ eyes, and during inclement weather, students are required to go into the gym.

“We should be able to have something that’s nice,” he said, “and the football field is an eyesore.”

Nelson said middle-school track meets are not held at the school but at the high school. Furthermore, he also said organizations don’t use the track for their activities, preferring, instead, to use the high school’s facilities. He said many youth sports tend to practice or play elsewhere.

Through fund raising and donations, community involvement and volunteers, Nelson said improvements could be made at the facility.

“I saw the grounds,” said trustee Carmen Schank. “It is an issue.”

Trustee Fred Buckmaster said he agreed with Nelson 100 percent.

“I would like to see the field in better shape,” he said. “Bradley Field (the former high-school field) is a big part of this community.”

Buckmaster said when the high school occupied the grounds before moving to its present site in 1988, the field was a priority for groundskeepers.

After meeting with maintenance director Ozzie Henke, engineer Steve Moon with Lumos and Associates and the city’s Robert Erquiaga, Nelson said there’s much work to do. He said the drains must be fixed and the field should be replaced with new soil. If an all-weather track were installed, the cost to improve the field could cost several million dollars.

Because it was an information item, trustees could not take action.

In another presentation, Nathan Waite reported on a staff visit to San Diego to attend the ProjectCon Conference and to visit different schools. The group of 10 educators came from both the middle and high schools.

“We visited different sites and had a lot of opportunity to talk,” Waite said, adding the attendance at the conference will continue to build momentum and support for the district’s strategic plan. “We also talked about education from the student perspective of what needs to be done.”

One of the visited schools was kindergarten through eighth grade (K-8). Waite said the grades were broken down to K-1, 2-3, 4-5 and 6-8. Math was taught separately from the projects. Several teachers visited a high technology high school in Chula Vista and saw how the students took ownership of their studies.

“We found a lot of student growth in what they wanted to do,” Lynn Strasdin said.

Heather Benjamin, a language arts teacher at CCMS, said teachers directed collaboration among the students and were not afraid of students taking charge. Waite said the Churchill County team had varied interests and talents and were able to glean information relevant to their teaching backgrounds.

Myke Nelson, a high-school English teacher, said the students had a purpose and enjoyed being in school. Nelson said he saw communication and collaboration at every level.

Waite said he’s “100 percent confident” something similar could be done for Fallon’s students.

The school board recognized this year’s retirees:

Lahontan Elementary School

Gregg Malkovich

Susan Marsh

E.C. Best Elementary School

Patty Daum

Becky Dodd

Julie Richards

Numa Elementary School

Pamela Johnson

Churchill County Middle School

Ed Ferris (Retired After Awards Last Year)

Mark Leiser

Gayle Martin

Brian Mcalexander

Lanni Mori

Diane Slowan

Elizabeth Spencer

Churchill County High School

Tom Fleming

John Johnson


Mike Compagnoni

Special Services

Judy Connelly

Human Resources

Lori Norcutt


Ellen Clyburn-Jackson

Ron Turner

Years of Service pins

10 years

Nancy Coon

Denise Grimes

Holly McPherson

Denice Pinder

Micah Pursely

Robert Summers

Stephen VanKirk

Rachel Knight

15 years

Robert Amezquita

Brad Barton

Kim Ewart

Richard Field

Teri Funsch

Julene Hitchcock

Katherine Leavitt

Sharon Oswald

Lori Crawford

Amanda Pitt

Michelle Richardson

Georgia Schostag

Noreen Swenson

Christine Mori

Suzanne Lawrence

20 years

Debra Bullock

Helen Garrett

Sandra Gilbert

Angela Heck

Brooke Hill

Dominique Johnson

Lucas Koenig

Keith Lund

Derild Parsons

Lisa Solinski

Brad Whitaker

25 years

Mark Callahan

Rose Cheek

Lisa Fritz

Dave Gerson

Bonnie Hargis

Kieran Kalt

Lynn Strasdin

Gregg Malkovich

Catherine McGowan

Matthew Reibsamen

Gloria Renteria

Chip Rutledge

30 years

Tammi Carrington

Liz Helton

Renie Knittle

Patsy Lewis

Glen Perazzo

Julie Richards


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