Bobcat Bulletin Education

Happy New Year from IHS

Ignacio High School Bobcats
Photo Credit: Ignacio School District

As I sit and write this, in my final semester in the educational world, it is easy to feel nostalgic. A lot has changed since I walked into Ignacio High School in the fall of 2000. Computers and electronic boards have replaced books and chalkboards. What has stayed the same is the passion and drive of teachers to educate our youth. I hope that in all those years, I have positively impacted student’s lives because they have profoundly impacted mine.

We ended 2023 with the “Jingle Jam” winter concert led by Mr. Alec Perrotti and Ms. Samantha Walker. Combining the high school and middle school bands resulted in a terrific holiday production. The elementary school had a tremendous Fifth-grade choir program. The beauty of a small school district makes these productions so very special and personal.

Basketball and wrestling are currently about halfway through their seasons. I was able to attend the basketball games last week and truly enjoyed watching the boys and girls on the court. At one point, I was watching the girls playing in the auxiliary gym, and my timing was perfect to watch a young freshman athlete sink a perfect three-pointer. Returning to the main gym, I watched the varsity boys beat Bayfield. The best part of that game was the student spirit section cheering on their classmates with great gusto. Early mornings and late afternoons, I can hear the practice music’s thump and the coaches’ encouragement in the wrestling room. Our wrestlers just returned from the Sand Devil and She Devil Classic Wrestling Tournament in Page, Ariz. Coaches and athletes were both looking forward to challenging matches and an opportunity to compete against athletes outside of our region.

Meanwhile, in the classrooms, we have started the second semester, which means we are halfway through the school year. For seniors, this leads to serious conversations with teachers and counselors to ensure they are on track for graduation. Seniors who may have failed a class in the first semester have a few opportunities to recover that failing grade. Our counselor, Mrs. Reinhardt, and her hard-working team have started meeting with each senior to double-check that each senior and their families know exactly where they stand at this critical midpoint. Should you as a family member have any questions regarding your student’s graduation standing, please feel free to contact the high school counseling department.

I cannot end without giving a shoutout to my terrific team that I have the privilege and honor of working with at the high school. Education has become a very challenging profession. The teachers and support staff I work with are some of the hardest working individuals I know. The teaching shortage has forced teachers and paraprofessionals to step in and cover classes when we are still looking for subs or, in some cases, full-time teachers. Teachers have offered to help mentor, support, and just be a friend to new teachers who are just entering their educational careers. The job of an educator is never easy, but the rewards can be overwhelmingly fulfilling.

I would also like to give a giant thank you to Robin Duffy-Wirth and two of her staff for presenting, to our students, another year of free memberships to the Sun Ute Recreation Center. It truly takes a village to raise today’s youth.

After 24 amazing years in the Ignacio School District, it’s time to trade my principal hat for a riding helmet and sun hat. To the students, staff, and parents who made each day a joyride, thanks for the laughs and lessons. As I ride off into the sunset, remember — life’s too short for dull moments. So long Ignacio High School. Keep the humor alive, and may your future be filled with endless laughter.

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