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In the Heart of the Blackland Divide

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

RCHS Becomes National Leader with 90% Associate Degrees for Graduating Seniors

Editor's note: Back in 2011, when RCISD Superintendent Kim Alexander told me that the school’s goal was to achieve 90% Associate’s Degrees for its graduating seniors, I thought the goal was not only a lofty one but quite possibly out of reach.  Nevertheless, in subsequent years the school’s numbers in that regard have always increased from the year before, and this year the goal has actually been achieved.  Here is the official press release just released yesterday:


On Friday, May 15, 2015, 18 of the 20 Roscoe Collegiate High School seniors will receive the Associate Degree from Western Texas College one day prior to receiving their high school diplomas on Saturday, May 16. When Roscoe Collegiate became the first rural school-wide Early College in Texas back in 2009, the goal then was to become the national leader in college readiness by graduating 90% or more of its senior classes with the Associate Degree by 2015 and beyond. Completion rates for the Associate Degree have also grown steadily from one student in 2010, to 52% of the 2011 Class, 58% of the 2012 Class, 73% of the 2013 Class, 89% of the 2014 Class, to 90% of the Class of 2015.

When asked about the 90% plateau, Roscoe Superintendent, Dr. Kim Alexander, had this to say, “We’ll celebrate this accomplishment for a day or two, and then realize just how many challenges lie ahead, and get right back to work. Obviously, the bigger the ship the harder it is to turn, and we have over 50 8th graders moving into high school next year, with most of the classes below them much closer to 50 students than 20. Also, as a STEM Academy since 2012, we have a similar goal of becoming the national leader in workforce readiness with 90% or more of our graduates leaving Roscoe with an industry-recognized Biomedical or Engineering STEM Certification through a paid student apprenticeship experience by 2017. It’s a little bit like running in front of a freight train. We’ll probably be okay if we keep on sprinting, but if we slow down, we’re going to get run over.”



Roscoe Collegiate junior high and high school students were honored for their academic achievements at the Academic Awards Banquet on Thursday evening, April 30.

Best All-Around Students

Grade         Girl                                         Boy
  12      Samantha Ortega                    Chase Cathey
  11      Cassie Chavira                         Max Nemir
  10      Karina Cisneros                      Caleb Ward
   9       Murissa Horton                      Camden Boren
   8       Madison Mims                       Will Thomas
   7       Jaci Alexander                        Tristan Baker

Outstanding Work Ethic

Grade         Girl                                         Boy
  12      Danielle Dean                         Juan Sanchez
  11      Caty Chavira                            Lin Xiao
  10      Bergan Trevino                       Johnathon Cuellar
   9       Iris Gonzalez                           Jose Chavira
   8       Michaela Horton                    Alfonso Islas
   7       Jaleigh Morales                      Roman Garza

Student Advisory Committee

Morgan Bowers                                  Max Nemir
Isaiah Olvera                                      Adrian Ortega
Brayden Beal                                      Chase Cathey
Jovanah Guzman                               Danielle Dean
Austin Willman                                  Mia Herrera
Magali Casas                                      Juan Sanchez
Cassie Chavira

Associate’s Degrees from Western Texas College

Phillip Ballenger                                Samantha Ortega
Chase Cathey                                      Jesenia Pena
Roxanne Covarrubias                        Selena Perez
Cutter Davila                                      Makayla Porter
Danielle Dean                                     Korie Rogers
Antonio Gallegos                               Olivia Saddler
Nich Hermosillo                                 Juan Sanchez
Elisa Herrera                                      Mireya Sanchez
Mike Herrera                                      Jake Wilson

Early Graduates

Phillip Ballenger
Jake Wilson (First RCHS student ever to complete requirements for Associate’s Degree in 3 years)

Welding Certificates from Texas State Technical College

Rafael Aguayo                                    Max Nemir
Clayton Chadwick                             Anthony Ortegon
Derek Creed                                       Vincent Pantoja
Erick Huidobro                                  A. J. Renteria
Pablo Huidobro                                 Bernardo Villa
Kevin Lavalais                                   Luis Villa
Javier Leanos                                     Lin Xiao
Spencer Little



Officer Steven Spencer has been promoted to Sergeant.

Police Chief Felix Pantoja has hired Kelsey Alexander, 31, an investigator for the Colorado City Police Department, as a second part-time officer for the Roscoe Police Department.  The other one is Charles Summers.  She is the first woman ever on the Roscoe Police Force.  Part-time work is funded by drug forfeiture money.

In an incident that occurred one morning last week, the Odessa Police Department requested Roscoe Police to aid them in detaining an Odessa kidnapping suspect and his victim, a 9-year-old boy, who were reportedly at the Stripes station in Roscoe.  Roscoe Police then detained two adult males and a boy.  One of the men, the boy’s biological father, had picked his son up on his way to school and was eastbound on I-20.  Upon notifying the Odessa Police, they learned that the boy’s mother had been arrested on a charge unrelated to the kidnapping, and that the Ector County District Attorney was asking that no charges be filed in the interest of the child, who remained in the custody of his father.

A welder and trailer were stolen from Roscoe Rentals on 1001 Oak Street early on the morning of Friday, May 1.  However, they were recovered yesterday.  No charges have yet been filed as the investigation is ongoing.



LUBBOCK, Apr. 29 — A 55 year-old Roscoe, Texas, man appeared in federal court today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Nancy M. Koenig and pleaded guilty to a felony offense stemming from a fraudulent invoicing scheme he ran while working at Chevron Pipe Line Company, announced, John Parker, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas.

Gerald Allen Williams pleaded guilty to a criminal information charging one count of wire fraud. He faces a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine. Judge Koenig ordered that he remain on bond pending sentencing, a date for which was not set.

According to documents filed in the case, Williams worked as a Project Coordinator at Chevron Pipe Line Company’s Roscoe, Texas, facility. He was responsible for ensuring the completion of several construction and maintenance projects.

E.D. Walton Construction Company (EDW) out of Snyder, Texas, was a Chevron contractor that performed various construction and maintenance projects for Chevron.

Sometime around 2006-2007, according to plea documents filed, Williams approached EDW about a fraudulent invoicing scheme. EDW would create fictitious invoices and submit them to Chevron through the Arriba System, Chevron’s system for receiving and paying invoices. Williams would approve the fictitious invoices for payment, and the fictitious invoices would be processed for payment to EDW. Once EDW received payment for the fictitious invoices, it would pay Williams, in cash, the exact amount of the fictitious invoice. EDW did not receive any of the proceeds from the fictitious invoicing; Williams received all the proceeds. The scheme continued until approximately December 2011.

Williams admitted that he knowingly devised or intended to devise the scheme to defraud Chevron of money by means of false and fraudulent invoices. He further admitted he acted with the specific intent to deceive or cheat Chevron into thinking that EDW had completed various construction and maintenance projects for Chevron, when in fact, Williams knew EDW had not completed those projects.

The FBI investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey R. Haag is in charge of the prosecution.

(reproduced verbatim from the U. S. Dept. of Justice website)



Plowgirl Lyndi Wilkinson finished a close second in the girls’ 400 meter dash at the Regional 2A Track Meet in Odessa last week.  In doing so, she has qualified for the State Track and Field Meet at Mike Myers Track Complex in Austin next Friday, May 14.

She ran her best time of the year, 60.93 seconds, at the Regional Meet, just behind Haevyn Risley from Canadian, who won the event with a time of 60.15 seconds.

Congratulations, Lyndi, and good luck in Austin!



Co-op President Steve Moore at last night's meeting.
The Central Rolling Plains Co-op held its annual membership meeting with a meal and door prizes at the Roscoe School Cafetorium last night.  Items of business included the manager’s report, regional reports, audit report, and election of two directors and two advisory board members.

Members learned that although last year was a down year compared to the year before, it was still a profitable one, and dividend and equity retirement checks were handed out at the end of the meeting.

There were two elections.  Kenny Landfried and Leslie Rannefeld were both re-elected to three-year terms on the Senior Board, and James Parrott and Scott Etheredge were re-elected to one-year terms on the Advisory Board.

The $100 prize of the annual bale guess in which members at the Co-op Gin’s Open House in October guess how many bales the gin will produce was won by Jim Boston, whose guess of 30,147 was the closest without exceeding the actual amount of 32,274.

There was a full house at the Co-op's annual meeting.



Kyle Park
Country singer Kyle Park from Austin makes his debut at the Lumberyard Friday evening. Both a singer and songwriter, he writes and produces his own songs, which might loosely be termed a part of the current Texas Country genre.

Born in Austin in 1985, he formed a band while a student at Texas State University in San Marcos.  His first album, Big Time, was released in 2005, and since then he has produced five others, the most recent being Beggin’ for More, released in 2013.  His single “The Night is Young” reached number one on the Texas Country Charts in 2013.  Three other singles, “Fit for the King,” “Long Distance Relationship,” and “Turn That Crown Upside Down,” were all Top Ten hits on the Texas Music Chart.

He will take the stage around 9:30pm.  Opening for him at 8:00pm is Ashliegh Lisset.

The Uncle Lucius Band
On Saturday night, the featured band is Uncle Lucius, whose fourth album is scheduled for release on June 9.  Their eclectic musical style has been described as “Southern rock for the thinking man,” and their singles, “And You Are Me,” “Keep the Wolves Away,” and “Pick Your Head Up” can be heard on this webpage.  They will be preceded by the opening band, The Dix Hat Band from Lubbock.

For more information, contact the Lumberyard during business hours at 325-766-2457.



The rain has been falling all around us for the last couple of days.  Lubbock is flooded, Tahoka got seven inches of rain, and the Brazos is overflowing its banks in Justiceburg.  But here we’ve had more promise than actual results.  We’ve been treated to thunder and lightning, but so far not much else. Early yesterday morning, we got a light rain off and on that didn’t last long and was pretty well finished by the time the sun rose.  My battery-powered rain gauge, which I’ve got working again, registered a total of .18”, and most people I’ve talked to got somewhere between a tenth and a quarter of an inch.  But the forecasters are giving us a 40% chance of more precipitation all the way up to Sunday afternoon, so I may be able to give a better report this time next week.

Temperatures have once again been mild for this time of year.  The high for the week was only 82°F on Saturday and Sunday, and lows were once again in the fifties and low sixties.  That pattern shouldn’t change in the immediate future. Highs through the coming week should be in the low to mid eighties with lows in the sixties through the weekend.

The long range forecast is for more good chances of rainfall next week, so with any kind of luck we’ll be getting more precipitation soon.



A graveside service will be at 2:00pm tomorrow, Thursday, May 7, at Roscoe Cemetery for Bill Faught, 78, who passed away on Saturday, May 2, at Coronado Nursing Home in Abilene.  He was a former resident of Roscoe and Sweetwater.

Billy was born in Roscoe on June 24, 1936, and went to Roscoe schools growing up.  He lived in Roscoe most of his life and only later in Sweetwater and Abilene.  He ran the movie projector at the Texas Theater and Midway and Rocket drive-in theaters for many years.

He is survived by his nephews, Charles Harding and Curtis Harding; his niece, Patricia Arch; and his sister-in-law, Jewell Foreth, all of Albany, Texas.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Orville and Marie Faught; and four brothers, Buryl Faught, Kenneth Faught, Royston Faught, and Dean Harding.


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