Letters to the Editor, April 21-23, 2010 | ParkRecord.com

Letters to the Editor, April 21-23, 2010

Weilenmann school: Choice is good

Editor:

I’m a bit surprised to see all of the hullabaloo over the impending opening of the Weilenmann charter school that is currently being build on Kilby Road west of Pinebrook and is scheduled to open next fall for grades K through 8. It looks to me like Weilenmann will simply add another choice to what is likely already Utah’s most flourishing educational bill of fare for primary and middle-school kids.

We already have one of the strongest public school districts in Utah (and maybe the best), and we have several very fine private schools in Park City too. Weilenmann will have a great challenge to draw and retain students here, but it appears that they are doing well so far in at least the first part of that regard.

Our public school district will certainly weather the "competition" from the new school. Probably it will result in a few less students in each classroom, but my understanding is that there won’t be a financial "hit" to the district for the first year. That will give the school board and administrators a chance to adjust things for the following year.

My wife and I have been very pleased with how our children have done in the Park City School District. Things haven’t been perfect for our kids in the Park City schools, but they’ve been pretty darn good. The outstanding school district is one of the biggest reasons that we live here. The kids have had some truly wonderful and inspiring teachers, a lot of really good ones, some that were so-so, and one or two who should probably consider a career change. I suspect that Weilenmann will have some fine teachers too. But I really doubt that on average they will be better than what we have in the PCSD.

Both of our children went to Jeremy Ranch, and I’ve served on the School

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Community Councils at Ecker Hill and Treasure Mountain. I’ve developed a great respect for and appreciation of many of the teachers and administrators at those schools. I strongly supported and helped some with the development of the International Baccalaureate Middle Years program at Ecker Hill and Treasure Mountain, and I am very proud of what the IB program brings to our classrooms. I know many of the present and former members of our school board and have always appreciated the work they do on behalf of our children. With their guidance, we have a school district of which we

can be very, very proud.

The talents in our children have been identified and well nourished and cultivated in the Park City School District. Jeremy Ranch, Ecker Hill and Treasure Mountain have done very well by us so far, and we won’t be changing schools. Our daughter is looking forward to starting her first year at Ecker Hill next fall, and so are we.

But that doesn’t mean that we can’t wish the Weilenmann School the very best of luck in their new endeavor and welcome them into our educational mix. I think they can only strengthen it by adding another alternative to parents who seek one for their children. I truly hope Weilenmann is up to the task of continuing to attract and retain local kids, and it doesn’t simply become a school for Salt Lake Valley kids whose home districts are a bit weak and whose parents drive to Park City daily.

And speaking about driving, now, about the potential traffic problems mornings and afternoons on Kilby Road? Oh well, we’ll get through that too.

Dave Hedderly-Smith

Pinebrook

A note of thanks to clinic volunteers

Editor:

This being National Volunteer Week and celebrating people in action, on behalf of the People’s Health Clinic, please allow me to shout out a huge THANK YOU to each and every one of our wonderful volunteers. The clinic could not survive without all of the tireless hours you put in to helping us continue with our mission. No matter how much of your precious time you have donated to the clinic, every single minute is so vitally important. So again, please accept this thank you from the entire staff of the People’s Health Clinic.

Here’s to you!

Patti Peters

Volunteer coordinator, People’s Health Clinic