Weld County students arrive at the oil and gas task force protest, courtesy of the Fred Flintstone pedal-powered school bus.

Weld County students arrive at the oil and gas task force protest, courtesy of the Fred Flintstone pedal-powered school bus.

A group of Jefferson High (Weld County) students were excused from school Thursday morning to attend the Colorado Oil and Gas Task Force meeting in Greeley.

Not exactly as spectators, but as active participants in a protest alongside such radical environmental groups as the Wild Earth Guardians.


We don’t know what lesson their teacher hoped to instill at the protest, but we’re fairly certain they weren’t learning how the robust economy in Weld County is fueled by oil and gas, which helps put money in mommy and daddy’s pockets to buy them cool stuff like the latest iPhone.


We reached out to the school district and were informed by Theresa Myers, communications director of Greeley-Evans School District 6, that today’s outing was intended to be a field trip to learn both sides of the issue.

They’re still trying to figure out how those “ban fracking now” signs produced by Food and Water Watch ended up in the waving hands of their students.

Myers explained:

These students are learning about writing position papers in a composition class, and the teacher had brought in members of the oil and gas industry to speak to the students, including one of our school board members. One of the speakers suggested the students attend the Oil and Gas Task Force meeting today. A field trip was arranged. As part of that, the teacher encouraged the students to speak with anti-fracking protesters to get that group’s opposing perspective on drilling. The end result of this information gathering is that the students were tasked with writing their own position paper on fracking based on the information they gathered from both pro and con resources.

It was not the intent of this exercise that the students would actually take part in the protest. We are still trying to find out why the students were pictured holding the actual protest signs, and will be following up with the classroom teacher on how and why that happened. Please note that the students took pictures with many participants, including Mayor Tom Norton and others at the meeting.

We do not in any way condone the use of district resources for students to participate in any kind of political or social protests during school time. We will be following up on this issue, and appreciate you bringing it to our attention.

Unfortunately, the students left before the actual meeting began, and in doing so, failed to learn a valuable lesson — the wheels on their school bus don’t go round and round without oil and gas.