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Stories of Promising Practice - Quality Schools (North Conejos School District)
North Conejos School District
North Conejos School District in the southern part of the San Luis Valley for three years has earned the state's high honor of being a District Accredited with Distinction. This is particularly impressive given the district's demographics and that the community is also dealing with a crippling opioid epidemic.
North Conejos is in many ways beating the odds. The small rural district in the southern part of the San Luis Valley has a large percentage of kids from low income households and who are English language learners. On top of that, the community has struggled with an opioid epidemic that has been the source of overdoses, suicides and families being split up. Nevertheless, North Conejos School District's schools have become a shelter from the storm in a way. The district prides itself on its consistency with low teacher turnover, an adherence to rigorous academic standards and a culture of caring.
The district has surmounted its challenges as evidenced by being named for three consecutive years a District Accredited with Distinction, which recognizes districts that that have earned 80 percent or more possible points on the state's District Performance Framework (DPF).
"In this area, what do you do when there are threats from opioids?" asked Superintendent Curt Wilson. "You circle the wagons and you take care of everyone inside. And that's our philosophy."
Curt Wilson, superintendent of North Conejos School District, explains how the schools create a family-like atmosphere for students in the district.