Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Tuesday, March 22, 2005
Drug testing plan approved for P-B-T students
Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD high school students will undergo drug testing next year, following a lengthy discussion Thursday night, during their regular meeting at the Technology Center.
The item had been discussed earlier during the current school year, after the item was brought to the attention of the Pecos High School principal and the superintendent.
The board also hosted a public meeting on Jan. 27, to give the community an opportunity to voice their opinion on the subject.
At that time, PHS Principal Steven Lucas gave a Power Point presentation and listed the pros and cons of drug testing.
Lucas presentation said if testing is done it would be for prevention, knowledge (parents want to know) and safety issues. Those tested would be students in athletics, students in academic extracurricular and other extracurricular; students that drive a vehicle to school; students believed to be under the influence and students in parental permission.
Testing would be done through random, urinalysis, accurate and verified if positive, while the consequences of any positive tests would depend on the policy the district adopted. The school could notify parents; students could be suspended from extracurricular, or there could be no punishment from school, because student is not necessarily under the influence at the time of positive test.
Risks from the program listed by Lucas included greater risk of litigation, driving students away from extracurricular activities, possible unintended consequences and cost to the district would run about $10-$14 per test.
During the meeting Thursday, Reeves County Hospital Physician’s Assistant Michele Cser spoke up on behalf of drug testing.
Cser said that she had been hearing people complain about privacy issues and constitutionality. “In the 1920’s they had something called prohibition and they were not having their constitutional rights violated,” said Cser.
“Cocaine, heroin and marijuana are illegal,” said Cser. “The constitution does not allow us to do illegal things.”
Cser said that in the 1920’s when people were arrested during prohibition for alcohol.
“People went to jail for alcohol, so why don’t they go to jail for drugs,” she said.
The board approved the drug testing policy during Thursday’s meeting and the policy will be implemented in the 2005-2006 school year.
P-B-T ISD Superintendent Ray Matthews said that the board and administration would look at the policies adopted by surrounding schools and see what fits the needs of this district. “We’ll come up with some policy for our district,” said Matthews. “We’ll look at other policies and see what the other districts have done and implement one that will fit our needs.”
In other business, board members approved modified schedule/TAKS Testing Days Waiver application to the Texas Education Association.
Matthews told the group that they would like to apply for a waiver for students who will not be testing on that particular day.
Lucas told the group that the waiver was to allow students not to come to school during testing time, if they were not testing.
“We don’t want them to come to school during testing, if they don’t have to take the TAKS,” said Lucas.
Lucas said that this would benefit the students who are testing. “We’ll have clean halls, no changing of classes in between and allow the students who are testing a little bit more time and it will be quieter,” said Lucas.
The students will not be counted absent, but will be allowed to go to school at 1 p.m., after the other students have had a chance to take their test.
“This way they won’t bother the students who are testing in the morning,” said Lucas.
Board members approved the revised cheerleading constitution, following a controversy in September over punishments handed out to members of the cheerleading squad.
“We did make some changes,” said Lucas. “The demerits are now five demerits and they can work those off, up to three demerits.”
Lucas said that if the cheerleader gets a demerit for being tardy they can work it off, by either running two laps or swats, given by the assistant principal or a designated individual.
Another change was that there will be only eight cheerleaders in the varsity squad and six students in the junior varsity team, with one mascot.
“We did reduce the number of demerits given and now for most of the infractions, they are only one demerit,” said Lucas. “The students should never get to the point that they get eight demerits.”
Memorial Day opening set for skateboard park
A Memorial Day dedication ceremony has been set for the city’s new skateboard park, as work began on Monday to pour the concrete after a series of construction delays.
“On Memorial Day, the 29th, we are going to dedicate it about 2 or 3 p.m.,” Town of Pecos City Manager Joseph Torres said about the park, which is located at Seventh and Alamo streets.
The Town of Pecos City Council first approved the Mata-Rodriguez Skateboard Park in 2003, but work on the facility was delayed several times over the past 18 months. Work resumed last week to build up the dirt berms before concrete pouring could get underway.
“We expect to have this ready before Memorial Day,” said city utilities director Edgardo Madrid. “Right now we’re on schedule to have it ready … if we don’t have any rainy days or bad weather days, we’ll be OK.”
Madrid said West Texas Construction out of Fort Stockton was handling the main part of the work, while city crews were finishing off the dirt work around the park.
“The other thing they have to do is to add (walking) paths with caliche. If we have time to do something else, we’ll try to put some parking spaces in, but the main thing is to have the skateboard park ready by that day,” Madrid said.
He said the city crews should be finished with their dirt work by the middle of this week, while work should be done within two weeks on putting taps in for the water and sewer lines for the park’s new restrooms. West Texas Construction’s part of the project is expected to be finished before May 15, Madrid added.
As of now, the work is being limited to the top and inside sections of the berm for the skateboard park, though Madrid said at a later date, the outside slopes would be finished.
“We will put in a coat sometime later,” he said. “I don’t want to put in concrete, because the kids would be going down it. We’ll either put in grass or some kind of vegetation,” he said.
The park was commissioned in response to local teens and their parents complaining there was no place for skateboarders to go in Pecos outside of in the streets or other unsafe areas. The park is named after Jaime Rodriguez, a Trans-Pecos Drug Task Force officer killed in a May 2002 shootout in Pecos, and Johnny V. Mata, a solider with the 507th Maintenance Unit who was killed on March 23, 2003 when part of the unit was ambushed by Iraqi troops near the town of Nasiriyah, in the opening days of Gulf War II.
Board votes to reject choice for new band director
Pecos-Barstow-Toyah school board members rejected the recommendation by superintendent Ray Matthews on appointment of a new head band director for Pecos High School, after several current and former students and community members asked the board to return the band’s former head director to that role.
Board members voted 5-2 following an executive session to reject the appointment of Forrest Perry as the new head band director for the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD, during their regular monthly meeting. Board members Amy Montgomery and Steve Valenzuela were the only two board members to vote for Matthews’ recommendation.
Mere Lenfest announced late last year he would step down as head band director at the end of this school year, and those at the Thursday meeting asked the board to elevate assistant band director Bill Goff to that position. Goff had been the head band director beginning in the late 1990s before he was replaced by Lenfest in 2001 and took the job of assistant band director.
The board made the original change after parental complaints about problems with the Eagle Band on a trip to a regional band competition at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces in October of 2000.
At Thursday’s meeting, several individuals signed up to speak on behalf of Goff during the audience portion of the meeting.
Adrian Herrera, a former PHS student and band student, told the board and superintendent Ray Matthews that he would like to see Goff re-instated to his old position.
“He really cared about the students and we did really well with him as the head band director,” said Herrera. “I’d like to see put back as head band director and I think it will make Pecos excel.”
Other students presented a petition to the board in favor of returning Goff to his former job.
Sarah Clark told the group that Mr. Goff has been like a dad to her and that he makes band fun. “He’s taught a lot about band and life,” she said.
Ron Garcia spoke about Goff and said that he too would like to see put back in the top band position. “I think when he first came here, if anything he was too nice, but he’s learned from that experience and now he can be firm but fair,” said Garcia.
Goff’s wife, Debra listed his accomplishments as Head Band Director for the Eagle Band, which included several first divisions at area competition.
“When I went to see Mr. Matthews when he got here, he had a little saying posted in his office, new administration, new opportunities,” said Goff. “I think now is the time for that opportunity.”
“Mr. Goff has the support of the community, the band members and has the support of the band boosters,” said Mrs. Goff. “I believe he is what we need for our band students,” she said.
Peggy Calderon told board members that as a former band member and PHS student, she has come to really appreciate Mr. Goff. “He really has a way with the students,” said Calderon. “The Band Boosters have really gone down.”
Calderon said that Goff really makes children enjoy band and want to participate in it.
Matthews said that Goff had applied for the head band director’s position. However, before Thursday’s meeting, he made a recommendation to the board that they hire Perry, who has certification in all level music grades PK-12. Perry holds a B.M.Ed., all level certification from Angelo State University, B.B.A., Business Administration/Angelo State University.
However, the board rejected the appointment and the position is still open.
“We’ll have to look at another recommendation at the next board meeting,” said Matthews.
Churches announce times for services
Several area churches are planning special services throughout this week in preparation for the Good Friday and Easter Sunday holidays.
First United Methodist Church of Pecos welcomes friends and guests to attend special Holy Week services March 24-27.
A communion service is planned for Holy Thursday, beginning at 7 p.m. On Good Friday, the church will be open from noon until 3 p.m., for meditation. Those attending may come and go as they wish during these hours.
Easter Sunday worship will begin at 11 a.m.
The Methodist Church is located at Third and Elm Streets in Pecos. Dr. Ed Williamson is pastor.
West Texas Catholic Parishes will be holding special services throughout the week.
On Holy Thursday - Mass of the Lord’s Supper, March 24: Our Lady of Refuge, Barstow, 6 p.m.; Christ the King, Balmorhea, 6 p.m.; Santa Rosa De Lima, Pecos, 8 p.m. and St. Catherine, Pecos, 8 p.m.
On Good Friday of the Lord’s Passion: Stations of the Cross, 12 p.m., Our Lady of Guadalupe in Saragosa; 1 p.m., Santa Rosa De Lima, Pecos, (in procession from St. Catherine to Santa Rosa); 3 p.m. Our Lady of Refuge, Barstow.
Seven Last Words, 3 p.m., Santa Rosa, Pecos and Communion Service at 6 p.m. at St. Catherine and 7 p.m. at Santa Rosa in Pecos.
Holy Saturday - Easter Vigil: 6 p.m., Christ the King, Balmorhea; 7 p.m., Our Lady of Refuge, Barstow; 9 p.m. St. Catherine, Pecos; 9 p.m., Santa Rosa, Pecos.
Easter Sunday: Resurrection of the Lord; 7:30 a.m., Santa Rosa, Pecos; 9 a.m., Santa Rosa; 10:30 a.m. St. Catherine; 12 p.m. Santa Rosa and 12:30 p.m. Our Lady of Guadalupe in Saragosa.
A Sunrise Easter Service will be held in Barstow on the Hill, on Farm Road 516 north of town, with Pastor Jim Daniels officiating.
Alvarado honored as gifted/talented student
Camilla Alvarado, a senior at Pecos High School, was recently honored at the Vision XIII: Embracing Potential, the 13th Annual Regional Conference on education of gifted and talented students.
She was named Vision XIII Oustanding Student, along with other West Texas students.
The event was held at the MCM Elegante Hotel in Odessa and was co-sponsored by the Midland Independent School District and Region 18 Gifted and Talented Cooperative Districts.
As part of the program, the accomplishments of outstanding high school students representing each sponsoring district were recognized.
School districts were asked to select student representatives who met the following criteria: participates in the approved gifted and talented program in their school district; demonstrates the highest standards of scholarly performance; evidences initiative and/or leadership as demonstrated by involvement in co-curricular, extracurricular, or community service projects and earns a record of outstanding citizenship.
School districts were asked to involve administration and teaching faculty in the selection of representative students.
Alvarado earned an outstanding high school record and was part of an outstanding group of young people representing West Texas, according to Lynn Lynch, Instructional Consultant for Gifted and Talented.
Alvarado is currently serving as president of her senior class and plans to attend and has been accepted to Angelo State University.
She is the daughter of Rosalina Alvarado and Rojelio Alvarado of Pecos.
Maternal grandmother is Julia Carrasco.
Paternal grandparents are Jose and Maria Alvarado, all of Pecos.
Little Miss Cantaloupe nominees sought
Applications are now being taken for the 2005 Little Miss Cantaloupe Pageant to be held June 24, along with the Golden Girl Revue.
Applicants must be enrolled in the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD, and they must be in Kindergarten or First Grade for the 2004-2005 school year. There is a $30 entry fee.
For more information call 445-2046 or go to the Chamber Office, 111 S. Cedar St., and pick up an application.
Deadline for entries is Friday, March 25.
Band members earn spots in All-Region
Several Eagle Band members earned spots in the All Region Bands during competitions in December.
Band members that earned a spot include: R. J. Guerra, Hippolito Lira, Stephanie J. Ornelas, Roger L. Quintana and Carlos F. Salgado.
These students earned a spot in the high school all region band and also placed high enough in their sections to advance to the area level competition in Lubbock January 8. Roger Quintana missed making the All State Band by one point.
Carina Cerna, Daniel Bitolas and Arturo Reyes earned a spot in the junior high all region band.
They represented Pecos and the Mighty Eagle Band Saturday, Jan. 22, 2005 in Crane at the All - Region Clinic/Concert.
The concerts began at 6 p.m. at Crane High School. Admission was free.
The all region tryouts include A, AA, and AAA schools from our area. These students demonstrated a desire to improve themselves and it is this attitude that will help the Mighty Eagle Band continue to improve in the future. Mr. Lenfest would like to thank these students for the time and effort they put into preparing for these competitions.
TWC office plans resume class
The public is invited to the Pecos Workforce Network, 215 W. Second St., on Thursday, March 31, from 1 to 3 p.m. to acquire valuable information on resume writing.
Limited sitting, please call ahead to 445-9664 to reserve a seat.
Gonzales’ announce birth of son
Gabriel and Sonii Gonzales announce the birth of their new baby son, Jacob Azariah Gonzales.
Little Jacob was born Feb. 18, at Odessa Regional Hospital. He weighed five pounds, 15 ounces and was 19 inches long at birth.
He was welcomed home by his brother, Michael Gonzales.
Paternal grandparents are Pablo and Elma Gonzales and the late Elisa Gonzales.
Maternal grandparents are Richard and Joanne Thorp.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Information contained in the Police Report is obtained from reports filed by the Pecos Police Department, Reeves County Sheriff’s Office, or other officers of those agencies.
The serving of warrants by an officer for outstanding fines of either traffic citations, animal control violations or other court costs are considered arrests and will be printed as such unless indicated that the fines were paid. In such instances we will indicate payment and release.
Joe Daniel Wright, 26, 1938 Scott St., was arrested by police on March 12 on a warrant out of Ector County charging him with contempt of court/child support payments. Police said the arrest was made at 3:31 p.m. in the 1500 block of South Oak Street.
Emilio Acosta, Jr., 24, 2014 Scott St., was arrested by police on March 12 at 2:22 p.m. on a warrant issued out of the Midland County Sheriff’s Department. Police said the arrest took place in the 1800 block of West Third Street.
At 2:35 p,m. on March 13, police arrested a female juvenile on a charge of making a terroristic threat. The juvenile was arrested at 1614 S. Hackberry St., and transported to the Reeves County Juvenile Detention Center.
Kristina Marie Lopez, 19, 1116 S. Cherry St., was arrested by police on March 11, on a charge of evading arrest or detention. Police said the arrest occurred when they tried to stop the Chevrolet Camero Lopez was driving in the 1200 block of South Eddy Street for having a defective license plate light. Police said the car did not stop until it was at the intersection of Seventh and Hackberry Streets. Lopez was arrested and taken to the Pecos Criminal Justice Center.
Gerald Thompson, 43, was arrested by police on March 11 in the 200 block of South Peach Street on a charge of public intoxication. Police said the arrest was made when they were called to that location in reference to a subject lying on the ground. Thompson was transported to the Pecos Criminal Justice Center.
Police arrested a female juvenile on March 9 at 212 S. Locust St., on a charge of possession and use inhale/ingest volatile chemical, a Class B misdemeanor. Police made the arrest after being called to the address about a juvenile who was intoxicated. She was transported to the Reeves County Juvenile Detention Center and turned over to authorities.
Reymondo A. Rayos, 57, 1611 Johnson St., was arrested by police on March 10 and charged with having a defective rear turn signal lamp, a Class C misdemeanor. Police said the arrest took place at the intersection of Third and Cedar streets.
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 432-445-5475, FAX 432-445-4321
Associated Press text, photo, graphic, audio and/or video material shall not be published, broadcast, rewritten for broadcast or publication or redistributed directly or indirectly in any medium.
Copyright 2003-04 by Pecos Enterprise