The only principal Frontier Elementary School has ever known, Sue Myers is completing her fifth year as the head of Payson's newest elementary school.
Myers summarized the school's greatest strength in a single word staff.
"We work as a team to create a place where children learn and grow academically, socially and physically," she said. "Students and staff are lifelong learners."
She identified "space" as her domed school's greatest need.
"Presently, we are full. We are the largest elementary school with (460) children," Myers said.
Classroom space will get tighter next year when FES sacrifices a classroom to add an on-campus kitchen.
FES's top achievement, Myers said, was installing the school's first grass field with the help of community donations and volunteers.
"When school opened in August, the Frontier Wolves could play on our ... field for the first time," she said. "We've had a wonderful time playing on the field at recess and lunch."
The school-wide implementation of an accelerated reading program also deserves prominent mention, she said.
"There is a computer in each classroom, so students can test whenever they complete a book," she said. "By January, the Wolves had earned more than 8,000 points ... and our library can hardly keep enough books for all of our readers."
Character Counts, a district-wide program initiated this school year also was a positive addition to the classroom, Myers said. The program integrates Six Pillars of Character trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship into the curriculum.
"Character Counts has added more focus to our school motto, 'We will be known by the tracks we leave behind,'" she said.
Finally, Myers cited Wolf Impressions, the after-school enrichment program funded by Credit for Kids money that was initiated during the 2000-2001 school year.
The most important local education trend, Myers said, is that Payson area schools have always done a good job, and have consistently demonstrated ongoing improvement.