Westside schools:
Church volunteers give hand to Washington

       Several members of the First Presbyterian Church this year were looking for “ways to serve in the community with their kids,” according to Julie Andrews, a member of the large downtown church.
       The result - the Families in Action group - is working out well for Washington Elementary. About 15 group members pitched in Oct. 25 to dig out a garden and do cleanup work around the school at 924 W. Pikes Peak Ave.
       The garden will eventually be planted and used by classes for different projects, and a Learning Greenhouse is in the planning stages by school staff and volunteers, according to Principal Terry Martinez
       Families in Action chose Washington because it is “a school with a lot of needs,” said Andrews, a leader of the effort. Working with Martinez and school staff, the goal is not just to do “a project here and there, but to be in contact with families and kids,” she added.
       The Coronado High boys cross-country team followed up the first regional championship in school history with a best-ever third place at the 5A state meet in Fort Collins Oct. 25.
       “I'm excited,” Coach Doug Hugill said afterward, happily announcing that training for next year “begins tomorrow.”
       Junior Dusty Solis, the individual champion at regionals Oct. 16, led the Cougars with a kick for seventh place Other high-scoring Coronado placers in the nearly 200-racer field were senior Andrew Hugill, 15th; and junior Jesse Mathews, 24th.
       Washington Elementary first-grade teacher Kay Farran received school tools and supplies, a new chair and a camera after being selected by Office Max's annual A Day Made Better promotion.
       The chain store initiative, in partnership with the nonprofit organization Adopt-A-Classroom, took place nationwide Oct. 1.
       In Colorado Springs, each of the three stores chose one school in a random drawing, leaving it to each school to pick the teacher to be surprised.
       Last May, two Coronado High students who were then seniors - Ben Taber and Kali Allison - qualified for the National Advanced Placement (AP) Scholar Award.
       Both earned an average grade of 4 or higher on a 5-point scale on all AP exams taken - the first time Coronado has had two students achieve that feat.

Westside Pioneer/press releases