Cottage Grove sentinel. (Cottage Grove, Or.) 1909-current, October 05, 2016, Image 1

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WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 5, 2016
SOUTH LANE AND NORTH DOUGLAS COUNTY'S MOST AWARD-WINNING NEWS SOURCE SINCE 1889
Council candidates
take their turn at
Chamber forum
VOLUME 129 • NUMBER 15
S AYING G OODBYE
BY JON STINNETT
The Cottage Grove Sentinel
C
ottage Grove’s candidates for City Council found them-
selves right where they wanted to be last week — for
one night, at least.
Four council seats are up for election this November, and
the seven candidates for those open positions joined the Cot-
tage Grove Chamber of Commerce at the Council chambers
at City Hall for its forum on Tuesday, Sept. 27 to outline their
positions on city issues.
The race for Ward II features candidates Bob Ehler, Henry
Lancaster, Rodney Cimburke and Merlyn Adams. Kenneth
photo by Jon Stinnett
Michael Roberts and Ivan DelSol will vie for an open at-large Bohemia Park glowed with candles in remembrance of Rebecca McElroy Thursday.
seat, while Councilor Amy Slay is unopposed for reelection in
Ward IV. Moderators Cameron Reiten of Cottage Grove radio
station KNND and this reporter prepared a list of questions to
the candidates in advance, which were tackled in the fi rst half
Lane early that morning.
ebecca McElroy had recently shared her
of the forum after opening statements; the second half of the
The Lane County Sheriff's Offi ce said it is
regret that her friends and loved ones in
evening featured questions from the audience and, in a few
unsure why McElroy's Kia Optima left the
the
Cottage
Grove
area
had
not
been
getting
instances, from those watching at home on a live Facebook
roadway, though two of her best friends, Tara
together
as
much
as
they
should
due
to
the
feed.
Blount and Ona Secord, urged the group to
In opening remarks, Ehler described himself as a 29-year demands of daily living.
Cottage Grove resident with experience on the City and South On Thursday evening, many of those friends reach out to others in times of despair and
not be afraid to be the "bad friend" and take
gathered at Bohemia Park, this time to pay
Lane Fire budget committees.
a friend's car keys for the evening.
their
respects
and
offer
condolences
to
each
“This is my third time running, and hopefully it’s a charm,”
McElroy was remembered as a vibrant per-
other after the car crash that claimed the 24-
Ehler said.
sonality who brought joy to many lives.
Lancaster, a homeschooled student, said he’s running to year old's life on London Road near Nichols
make Cottage Grove a better place.
“I want to try to help make this city be a better place,” Lan-
caster said. “Regardless of who wins, I hope we can all do
that together.”
Radio personality Kenneth Michael Roberts is seeking elec-
tion to the seat he was appointed to last year, and he listed
budget committee appointments along with a seat on the St.
Vincent DePaul board among his qualifi cations. For her part,
Slay said she was disappointed to be running unopposed in
Ward IV, as she was hoping the voters would have a choice in
that contest. Slay, a longtime Grover, works at Weyerhaeuser
and was also appointed to her position last year.
Ivan DelSol founded the Opal Center in downtown Cot-
tage Grove. He’s a computer programmer who moved here 12
BY JON STINNETT
years ago and has served on the City budget committee and
The Cottage Grove Sentinel
served on the boards of two area nonprofi ts.
“I’m running because I want to help Cottage Grove thrive
here are rodents living in a classroom
in modern America while maintaining its small-town magic,”
at Harrison Elementary School, but no-
he said.
Ward II candidate Rodney Cimburke said that Cottage body’s worried.
In fact, teacher Carolyn Jenkins lauds the
Grove has offered much to him and his family in their decade
two additions to the Owls Nest classroom,
here.
“I’m here because i want to give back a little bit,” he said. which works to educate students on the autism
“I’m a pretty passionate person, and I have a lot of opinions spectrum, as vital teaching tools. Last spring,
about this and that thing. But I’m not running so I can sit up the class welcomed Super Hoot and Cookie
photo by Jon Stinnett
here and fi libuster. I’m more concerned with your opinions.” Wallace Batman Willis McGee (named by the
Students
Jon
Robertson,
Vincent Smart
Merlyn Adams volunteers on the boards of the Healing students), two guinea pigs, also known as ca-
and
Sean
Butler
compile
"poop
data"
Matrix and Cottage Grove Gleaners and said that living near vies, that Jenkins said are capable of teaching
on
their
classroom
pets,
guinea
pigs
Coiner Park helps make issues surrounding parks and recre- lessons that books can’t cover.
Hoot
and
Cookie.
Jenkins
said
she
saw
an
advertisement
for
a
ation important to her.
“There are opportunities to still take your kids to our parks grant program through Pets in the Classroom, little bit “guinea pig crazy.”
to have a wonderful picnic,” she said, “and I look forward to which, as its name suggests, places pets where
“We checked out books, watched movies and
students are ready to learn from them.
continuing to improve those locations.”
did a lot of research,” she said. “All the staff
“We want to make sure that our students get here now have guinea pigs, and I even bought a
all of the experiences that students in other little sling to carry mine around.”
Please see FORUM, Page 10A
classrooms get,” she said. “One of those is hav-
In the Owls Nest, students learn to handle
ing a classroom pet.”
Hoot and Cookie, which Jenkins said is of-
Guinea pigs are great classroom pets, Jen- ten comforting and soothing and offers good
kins said, because they’re not overpowering or practice in keeping their bodies calm. Pets also
scary for students like larger animals. They’re teach empathy for other beings, a lesson that is
also not too small to be mishandled, as ham- often diffi cult to pass on to those on the autism
sters may sometimes experience. Pets in the spectrum.
Classroom adds that pets teach children re-
Having the guinea pigs and knowing so
sponsibility and leadership, compassion and much about them has also offered students in
respect for all forms of life.
the Owls Nest the opportunity to pass those
“They’re a great size for the kids and their lessons on to their peers.
motor skills,” Jenkins said.
“For lots of kids on the spectrum, friendships
Accepting the guinea pigs into the classroom can be tricky,” Jenkins said. “This gives them
photo by Jon Stinnett
set off a chain reaction at school, where Jen-
Ward II candidate Rodney Cimburke addresses a
kins said that staff as well as students went a
Please see PETS, Page 11A
question at the forum held at City Hall last week.
Friends gather to remember 24-year old lost in crash
R
Pets getting credit for teaching
students in Harrison classroom
Teacher says guinea pigs
teach empathy, responsibility
and leadership, in addition to
other qualities
T
School Board
discusses
easement
near Kennedy,
hears full-day
K report
Kindergarten students
experienced their fi rst full day
of school on Monday
BY SAM WRIGHT
The Cottage Grove Sentinel
The South Lane School Board discussed
a possible easement to the City of Cottage
Grove at its Monday night meeting.
The City has recently discovered that
there is a need for a power line by the War-
ren H. Daugherty Center and Al Kennedy
High School in order to power water pumps
to supply water to surrounding residents.
The City has drawn up a contract which re-
quests the permission of the School District
to construct a power line and an electrical
substation by Taylor Street.
Parent was quick to inform the board that
this was not a motion to approve the con-
tract, but to request direction and negotia-
tion ideas from the rest of the Board.
The city sat down with legal representa-
tion and informed the School District that
they can give credit on fi xtures of old build-
ings in the area as long as they can docu-
ment the facilities that used to be present.
The District also negotiated that a service
fee for the school to tap into the electrical
substation would be waived, which would
normally be 25 percent.
The School Board has yet to approve the
contract, but there were no board members
speaking against the easement and that the
contract seemed benefi cial to both sides.
Special Services Coordinator Chad Ham-
ilton also gave a brief report on the fi rst day
that South Lane School District’s kinder-
garten classrooms held their fi rst full day of
school on Monday.
“Overall things went well,” Hamilton
said, “We have every kid in kindergarten
except perhaps two or three that success-
fully fi nished a full day.”
Superintendent Krista Parent said she
heard that it was a trying time for the school
district’s transportation department, but that
they pulled it off with a lot of hard work.
The School District recently implemented
a plan to move kids to full days of school,
but they started the school year with a
“staggered start.” The staggered start came
in response to reports from teachers about
the diffi culty of starting full-day kindergar-
ten at the beginning of school last fall, the
fi rst year of mandated full-day kindergarten
in Oregon. Hamilton says that the district’s
kindergarten teachers are responding fairly
well and are putting a lot of energy into the
new schedule. However, he also said there
isn’t enough information on whether this
will be benefi cial for students and teachers
in the long run.
“We’re getting a lot of mixed feelings
from schools in town,” Parent said of the
new schedule, “We’ll fi gure out what’s best
for the kids.”
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