Big changes have been occurring in the Ignacio School District within the past two years.
Along with the improvement and the introduction of new facilities, the district has also begun improving the trail systems that run behind the high school, elementary and administration building.
“The three trails will help to have the Mesa accessible by foot and encouraging more walking to the schools,” Rocco Fuschetto, Superintendent at Ignacio School District said.
The prior trail systems were not properly maintained over years of weathering. The restored trails will allow students to walk safely to and from school.
The project to restore the trail systems began in early June with the Southwest Conservation Corp. as one of the project leaders. This marked the first time the Ignacio School District has worked with the grant-funded program that employs local youth in conservation projects in the area.
“To create this collaboration between us, the Conservation Corp. and the Southern Ute Job Corp. (Youth Employment),” says Fuschetto, “In order for us to apply for the grant the Conservation Corp. needed to be contacted and asked to participate.”
The grant allowed for youth workers to be paid for their work while the Ignacio School District and the Town of Ignacio purchased the necessary equipment to restore the trails.
As of early July the 10-man crew had been working on the trails for four weeks, with two out of three trails completed. Eight of the crewmembers are youth from the Durango area and two, Jakob Box and Sydney Santisteven, are from the Southern Ute Education’s Youth Employment Program.
Once the trails are completed, the School District and the Youth Employee Program will do their part to keep the trails maintained for future use.
“The program provides youth summer employment and by using some local youth, they will take pride in the work done,” Fuschetto said.
The project will be one of the last facilities done before the grand opening of the new high school Saturday, August 15.