Middle Park High welcomes two new counselors
Middle Park High School has reconstructed its counseling department. Dane Ruttenberg, who was Middle Park’s counselor for a long time, has been reassigned to a new position in the school district. Newcomers Rachel Memelink and Brooke Paxton, take over the counseling department as the new counselors of Middle Park High School.Dane Ruttenberg has been Middle Park’s guidance counselor for seven years. He was responsible for helping everyone. As counselor, he was a “resource” to students, parents, and administrators. Ruttenberg has helped students solve their academic challenges and help them prepare for their future. “I like helping people come up with solutions,” said Ruttenberg. “I like working to support everyone so we can have a good school.”Now, he has been reassigned to work outside the counseling office with a certain group of students. He will be working with a group of 20 to 25 kids, grades 6 through 10, who are struggling in school more than typical students.Ruttenberg will work one-on-one with these students in their classrooms. He will be working closely with them, and their parents, to help them discover alternative ways of getting their education.”The reason why I wanted this job was because as a student, I had very little success in my own schooling in 1st throughout 12th grade. I did not like school. I saw this as an opportunity to change their school experience so they don’t feel like I did; so they can feel success,” said Ruttenberg.Working for so long at Middle Park gave him the opportunity to know the students, as well as letting the students get to know him.”Mr. Ruttenberg was outgoing, responsible, respectful, and he could relate to you in any level,” said senior Colby Marr. “He pushed one academically and was always there to help.””Mr. Ruttenberg cared about the students. He got close and got to know all of us,” said senior Kayla Shannon. “He let you pick your classes to help you pursue your future endeavors.”In place of Mr. Ruttenberg, leading the counseling department are Rachel Memelink and Brooke Paxton.Rachel Memelink has been a counselor for a few years in Minnesota, North Park, and Longmont. She wanted to be a counselor at Middle Park “ever since she lived in Walden.””I was always impressed with Middle Park: the school, community, and teachers,” said Memelink. “I have enjoyed my time here so far. It’s been a challenge because everything is different but having the most hair in the counseling department is fun.”Known by the students as the “Mrs. Ruttenberg with hair,” Ms. Memelink has promised to “continue academic activity and success in Middle Park.”The newest edition to the counseling department, Brooke Paxton also has a plan to help the students of Middle Park.”In the three weeks that I’ve been here, it has been great!” said Paxton. “I’m excited to get started.”Paxton gained her counseling experience in Vermont and was a counselor for four years in New York. The bad economy caused her to lose her job. As she was searching for work, she came across Middle Park where she thought the program was “something she could really work with and have room to grow in her profession.””She is pretty cool. She is from a different background. I feel she is going to do good,” said Colby Marr. “Ms. Paxton will strive kids to do their best.”Middle Park’s students and staff welcome Ms. Memelink and Ms. Paxton to their school and wish Mr. Ruttenberg the best in his new position.
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