EDITORíS DESK: Pleasant Valley passes, Howbert scores!

       Dining from the pot-pourri platter...
       Congratulations to Howbert Elementary for its impressive showing in the just-released Colorado Student Assessment Program (CSAP) test results. Six of 10 scores in the 90s is the best I've ever seen for a Westside school. This puts our little Pleasant Valley elementary right up there with the most elite educational locales in the region, probably even the state. All the more remarkable, Howbert is not a charter, not a magnet and not boosted by any kind of gifted program. It's just a traditional- education school that takes whatever students walk through the door. And nowadays, by Principal David Morris' estimates, about a third of them have parents whose low income levels qualify the kids for free or reduced lunches. So where's the magic coming from? Morris praises his teachers, which won't get any argument here, but it's also been a best-kept secret for years how tight-knit and supportive Pleasant Valley people are in regard to their elementary school. If parents get behind their children's education, almost anything is possible, high income level or not...
       So, how about that three-headed plan for fixing up Fountain Creek next to Gold Hill Mesa? Obviously, City Council still needs to approve the Stormwater Enterprise piece, but the idea makes sense on multiple levels. It also could become a political poker chip if the project starts this fall, as planned. Think about it - a creek demonstration project in a highly visible location, partially using Stormwater Enterprise money, at a time when city voters will be considering a ballot initiative to essentially eliminate the enterprise altogether? ...
       Harking back to an article last week, how many of you favor Councilman Jerry Heimlicher's plan for giving to special fundraising parking meters instead of to panhandlers themselves? He'd like to hear from you at 385-5470.

- K.J.