When public’s not an option

When public’s not an option

Remote McElmo Canyon held onto school with untried solution
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Battle Rock Charter School kindergartener Heather Martinez prepares for a day-long hike in Sand Canyon, part of the Canyons of the Ancients National Monument.
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The mountain boomer lizard, seen on a recent hike near the school, is the mascot for Battle Rock Charter School.
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Ep 704079948
Cyrell Dance is the only sixth grader at Battle Rock Charter School.
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Ep 704079948
Battle Rock Charter School students pose for a goofy group photo at the end of a daylong hike in Sand Canyon, part of Canyon of the Ancients National Monument.
Ep 704079948
Ep 704079948
Sleeping Ute Mountain rises in the background as Battle Rock Charter School students, teachers and parents hike through Sand Canyon during a daylong hiking trip.
Ep 704079948
Ep 704079948
Battle Rock Charter School second grade student Skylee Lindsey explores a small cave during the hike in Sand Canyon.
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Ep 704079948
Battle Rock Charter School fourth-graders Eric Williams and Harley Sparks raise the flag to start the school day.
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Ep 704079948
Battle Rock Charter School teacher Moqui Mustain-Fury helps students assemble a paper quilt as a going-away gift for the school’s only other full-time teacher, Malina Suer.
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Ep 704079948
The first rays of morning light color Battle Rock Charter School’s nearly century-old building. The school, in the heart of McElmo Canyon southwest of Cortez, has 38 students in kindergarten through sixth grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen Battle Rock as a charter school.
Ep 704079948
Ep 704079948
Battle Rock Charter School students, teachers and parents scramble up sandstone during a six-mile hike in Sand Canyon.
Ep 704079948
Ep 704079948
After a six-mile hike, Battle Rock Charter School students still have energy to play outside.
Ep 704079948
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=1&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784&imageversion=1by1
DAVID BERGELAND/Durango Herald - The first rays of morning sun light up the rose colored stones of Battlerock Charter School's 100-year old building. Students lined up their backpacks before a daylong hike in Sand Canyon, part of Canyon of the Ancients National Monoument that is just minutes from the school. The two-room school in the heart of McElmo Canyon south of Cortez has 38 students in kindergarten through 6th grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen Battle Rock as a charter school.
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=1&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=2&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784&imageversion=1by1
DAVID BERGELAND/Durango Herald - Battle Rock Charter School fourth graders Eric Williams and Harley Sparks raise the flag to start the school day. Battle Rock, a 100-year-old school in the heart of McElmo Canyon south of Cortez, has 38 students in kindergarten through 6th grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen it as a charter school.
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=2&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=3&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784&imageversion=1by1
DAVID BERGELAND/Durango Herald - Battle Rock Charter School kindergartener Heather Martinez prepares for a day-long hike the school took in Sand Canyon, part of the Canyon of the Ancients National Monument. Battle Rock, a 100-year-old school in the heart of McElmo Canyon south of Cortez, has 38 students in kindergarten through sixth grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen Battle Rock as a charter school.
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=3&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=4&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784&imageversion=1by1
DAVID BERGELAND/Durango Herald - Battle Rock Charter School students, teachers and parents scramble up sandstone during a six mile hike in Sand Canyon, part of Canyon of the Ancients National Monument. Battle Rock, a 100-year-old school in the heart of McElmo Canyon south of Cortez, has 38 students in kindergarten through 6th grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen it as a charter school.
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=4&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=5&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784&imageversion=1by1
DAVID BERGELAND/Durango Herald - Sleeping Ute Mountain rises in the background as Battle Rock Charter School students, teachers and parents hike through Sand Canyon during a daylong hiking trip. Sand Canyon is part of Canyon of the Ancients National Monument. Battle Rock, a 100-year-old school in the heart of McElmo Canyon south of Cortez, has 38 students in kindergarten through 6th grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen it as a charter school.
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=5&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=6&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784&imageversion=1by1
DAVID BERGELAND/Durango Herald - A mountain boomer lizard basks in the sun beside the trail during the hike in Sand Canyon. This species is the mascot for Battle Rock Charter School. The 100-year-old school in the heart of McElmo Canyon south of Cortez has 38 students in kindergarten through 6th grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen Battle Rock as a charter school.
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=6&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=7&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784&imageversion=1by1
DAVID BERGELAND/Durango Herald - Battle Rock Charter School second grade student Skylee Lindsey explores a small cave during the hike in Sand Canyon, part of Canyon of the Ancients National Monument. Battle Rock, a 100-year-old school in the heart of McElmo Canyon south of Cortez, has 38 students in kindergarten through 6th grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen it as a charter school.
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=7&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=8&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784&imageversion=1by1
DAVID BERGELAND/Durango Herald - Battle Rock Charter School teacher Moqui Mustain-Fury helps students assemble a paper quilt as a going away gift for the school's only other full-time teacher, Malina Suer. Battle Rock, a 100-year-old school in the heart of McElmo Canyon south of Cortez, has 38 students in kindergarten through 6th grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen it as a charter school.
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=8&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=9&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784&imageversion=1by1
DAVID BERGELAND/Durango Herald - After a six mile hike, Battle Rock Charter School students still have energy to play outside. Battle Rock, a 100-year-old school in the heart of McElmo Canyon south of Cortez, has 38 students in kindergarten through 6th grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen it as a charter school.
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=9&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1477766784
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=10&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1478899997&imageversion=1by1
DAVID BERGELAND/Durango Herald - Cyrell Dance is the only sixth grader at Battle Rock Charter School. The 100-year-old school in the heart of McElmo Canyon south of Cortez has 38 students in kindergarten through sixth grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen it as a charter school.
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=10&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1478899997
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=11&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1478899997&imageversion=1by1
DAVID BERGELAND/Durango Herald - Battle Rock Charter School students pose for a goofy group photo at the end of a daylong hike in Sand Canyon, part of Canyon of the Ancients National Monument. The 100-year-old school in the heart of McElmo Canyon south of Cortez has 38 students in kindergarten through 6th grade. When the school was threatened with closure in 1994, parents and community members rallied together to reopen Battle Rock as a charter school.
Bilde?site=du&date=20120406&category=news01&artno=704069883&ref=ph&item=11&newtbl=1&maxw=650&ts=1478899997
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A book about Battle Rock Charter School was published in 2002. Award-winning teacher, author and former journalist Bill Celis spent a year living in McElmo Canyon and chronicling life at the school. In his book, Battle Rock: The Struggle Over A...

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