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Group seeks input on prop. 10 education spending

Renee Shadforth, Sierra Sun

The Community Collaborative of Tahoe Truckee has set a goal to have more community involvement in its planning process, with participation from both Anglo and Latino parents, says Community Collaborative Director Kim Bradley.

Grants available through the Nevada First 5 Commission – totaling approximately $67,000, or 25 percent of the county’s Proposition 10 funding earmarked for ages newborn through 5 – provided an opportunity for the Community Collaborative to involve parents and community members in the planning process for the first time.

“Last year we pulled service providers under one group, and we were successful with the service providers,” Bradley said. “Now we wanted to include parents and community members and go outside of our usual scope.”

The Community Collaborative of Tahoe Truckee is a regional group comprised of community advocates and service providers who work together to pool resources for youth and families in the community.

Several months of discussion and meetings led up to the Collaborative’s most recent community meeting on Jan. 28. The discussion in previous meetings led to one general concept: “to explore the idea of creating and/or enhancing existing programs to provide an integrated preschool experience for both Spanish and English speaking children.”

The concept was created, Bradley said, to mend the disconnect between English- and Spanish-speaking children before they reach elementary school.

At last week’s meeting, one mom commented on the separation between the two groups.

“Truckee Elementary – God love them, and they do the best they can – but it is so segregated,” the mom said. “It is the Spanish-speaking kids and the English-speaking kids … it should never be that way.”

There is some flexibility to the concept – the Collaborative may want to include children with disabilities, or an “access for all” idea, in the scope of the plan.

One parent, Truckee-resident Lydia Percin, was vocal in wanting a different concept entirely: a community swimming pool.

“The existing pool is completely inadequate for 0 to 5 year olds and children with disabilities,” Percin said. “This town is egregiously negligent toward special ed kids.”

In a final vote at the end of the Jan. 28 community meeting, a few people voted to switch to a pool concept, but the majority of the 20 or so at the meeting voted to continue with the integration concept.

In the next Community Collaborative meeting, scheduled for Feb. 11 at the Truckee Pines Apartments, Bradley said she wants to work toward developing the concept of enhancing access for all 0 to 5 year olds. Any interested community members can attend the meeting.

However, Bradley said she wants to honor those who have attended meetings since the fall, so discussion will be focused on developing the existing concept. Also, the collaborative is on a tight schedule – the proposal to the Nevada First 5 Commission is due in approximately four weeks.

Get involved in the process

— Who? The Community Collaborative of Tahoe Truckee and any community members;

— What? Meet to discuss the concept of creating or enhancing existing programs to provide an integrated preschool experience for both Spanish and English speaking children, and have a voice in how $67,000 in Proposition 10 funds will be spent via that concept;

— When? Feb. 11 at 5:30 p.m. (5 p.m. introduction for those just getting in on the process);

— Where? Truckee Pines Apartments meeting room;

— Need more information? Contact Community Collaborative Director Kim Bradley at 587-8322. Child care and food will be provided.


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