As new children attend Avery-Parsons Early School this fall, they will be joined by the new preschool director, Lynelle Denton.
Denton and her family arrived in Buena Vista in July.
“My husband had finished his principal licensure program in Fort Collins, and I was working for the early childhood program there,” she says. “Things were going really great, we were just ready to move back to the mountains.”
Her husband had grown up on the Western Slope in Redstone, and after marrying they lived in the Carbondale area for 8 years. They were living in Fort Collins for almost 8 years when they made the move to Buena Vista.
Denton grew up in many places, from Puerto Rico to Michigan and Minnesota.
“I liked it,” she says. “I enjoyed meeting new people and the new experiences and exposure to lots of different cultures and areas.”
As a child, Denton thought she’d become a cashier. She really enjoyed seeing the cashiers at work when she went to a store.
“I practiced with those little cashier registers and things like that, that I could find at garage sales, and set up stores,” she says.
This decision changed, however, as she got older. She found an appeal to working with children of any age.
In high school, she became involved in groups like student council. That period of life, she says, may have had the most effect on her education decisions later on.
“I had great teachers and I had some not so great teachers. Both made me want to go into education, to both make it better and to carry on the good things that I learned from the great teachers. It was an impactful time for me.”
She attended Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Mich. and received a degree in education in 1998.
Before moving to Buena Vista, Denton worked as a youth director for children of all ages.
“I’ve been working with high schoolers all the way down to early childhood,” she says. “I landed in early childhood about 10 years ago and loved what it is, loved what it is about, educating children as early as prenatally.”
The position of early childhood director at Avery-Parsons Elementary School gave her and her husband the chance they needed to get back to the mountains.
“I’m really passionate about early childhood and the importance of those early years,” she says. “The most brain development happens from birth to 5. It really excites me the impact the community, families and teachers can have on those years. It really excites me the community vision that’s here to reach out to families and children.”
So far, she said last month, she is impressed with the deep care and devotion the school staff has dedicated to educating children and families.
“From what I’ve seen, there is a high level of commitment the overall district vision is helping students reach the peak of their success,” she says. “I’m honored to work in such a fine district with such fine employees.”
She plans to keep a strong connection between the community and the school. This connection, she says, helps education be all that it can be, keeping people first while maintaining daily responsibilities.”
As her family moved in, they received help from neighbors and complete strangers with the moving process. They were even brought dinners.
“Our dog got lost for about 3 days and we put it on the BV Community Facebook page, we put up signs around where we lived,” she says. “There were people who called us and were out looking for our dog. He ended up coming back, but in the process we got to meet a lot of people, all our neighbors and townspeople who were concerned for us and didn’t even know us. That, I think, highlighted the quality of people in BV.”
Denton hopes to become a well-rounded, intentional, loving and fun wife, mother, friend, coworker and leader in a community that has given so much to her before she has given to it.