Sutter County Superintendent of Schools Community News: September 2021
A Message from Superintendent Tom Reusser

We are delighted to welcome our Sutter County students back to in person instruction. Ensuring the safety of students and staff, our school districts are providing a high quality education in order to address learning loss issues from the past school year.

Feather River Academy opened its doors on August 5 to full in person instruction for 35 students. FRA has increased services to the students in the form of a full time counselor, an intervention specialist two days per week for small group support for drug and alcohol abuse, and individual and group counseling through New Day Counseling.

FRA offers a variety of ROP classes such as Culinary Arts, Manufacturing and Ag Science. Students also have access to Virtual Job Shadow where they can research a variety of careers. FRA students also have access to our local recruiters for the armed forces.

FRA is an example of one school which is providing wonderful resources to our students. Each school district is providing social-emotional as well as academic supports to students as they return to in person instruction. Be sure to stay connected to your school district in order to learn more about the resources available for your children.


Superintendent Tom Reusser
Welcome New Superintendent/Principal: East Nicolaus High School: Neil Stinson

East Nicolaus High School has hired a familiar face to serve as the new Superintendent/Principal: Neil Stinson. For the past two years, Neil has served as the Director for Student Support as well as a football and softball coach.

“I’m excited, honored and humbled to lead this special place,” Neil said. “East Nicolaus High School has a unique setting. It is in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by rice fields, but it has an inviting, tight-knit family feel.”

Neil is a 1984 graduate of Marysville High School. He earned his bachelor’s degree from CSU, Stanislaus in History. He earned his single subject teaching credential from Western Governor’s University and his administrative credential from CSU, Chico.
Neil’s first teaching position in education was at Ripon High School from 1991-1999. He served as the football coach as well as the campus supervisor. In 1999, he began teaching at Marysville High School. In 2002, he took a break in order to work at the business he and his wife own in Wheatland: Prime Time Pizza. He went back into teaching in 2011 to serve as a history teacher and football coach at Wheatland High School. In 2014, he was hired at East Nicolaus High School as a social studies teacher and athletic director, stepping into the Director of Student Services in 2019.
“East Nicolaus High School has generational attendees,” Neil said. “Many of the students who attend here do so because their grandparents and parents attended. The families are a tight knit group which creates a small, safe, family feel type of culture here.”

Neil said he learned a lot from former ENHS Superintendent/Principal Mark Beebe. “Mark said I need to slow down, breathe and think things through,” Neil said. “It’s important to think about how you are going to get to that final outcome. What’s good for students and staff must be the priority.”

Neil and his wife, Shelli, live on a small ranch in Arboga which they share with horses, cattle, goats, chickens and dogs. Shelli has served as a teacher at Bear River Middle School in Wheatland since 1999. Married for 32 years, Neil and Shelli have two children. Their daughter, Alexis, is a pediatric nurse at Rideout Hospital. Their son, JT, lives at home with them; he works and attends college.

In their free time, they enjoy UTV riding in the mountains of the western states. They enjoy camping and spending time with their family.

Sutter County Superintendent of Schools is delighted to welcome Neil Stinson to his new position. 
SCSOS Employee Highlight: Terry Nelson

Terry Nelson is celebrating twenty-five years with Sutter County Superintendent of Schools on September 3. She began her tenure as a para-educator with the SED Program when it was located behind mental health. She served in that capacity for five years. She transferred to ATP when it was at Park Place and served for a few months. She then secured a position that she thoroughly enjoyed with ROP where she secured contracts with the community for work placements for students. She served in this position for fourteen years. She joined the SPED ATP team when it was located at Yuba College. Those classes were moved to the FRA classroom where she has served for the past three years. “I love working at SCSOS with the students and staff,” Terry said.
Born in Salt Lake City, Utah into a military family, Terry has lived in many states including Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Georgia and many more. When looking for housing in California, she started in Fairfield but it was difficult to find a rental that would accommodate all six of her children. She and her family moved to Wheatland and eventually moved to Yuba City where she currently resides.

Terry enjoys gardening, art and crafts, and sewing in her free time. Her grandmother taught her how to sew when she was ten years old. Terry and her husband, Jeff enjoy antiquing and going to yard sales.

“I enjoy life and spending time with my family,” Terry said.

Be sure to congratulate Terry on her twenty five years of service when you see her.
Sutter County One Stop Success Story: Zulema Avalos

Zulema Avalos came to the Sutter County One Stop in October 2020 to take ESL classes. She excelled in her ESL classes and was highly encouraged to take the Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) class by her instructor. She was enrolled in the Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA) Program to assist with tuition using our special English Language Learners (ELL) Grant. Zulema started the CNA class through the CTE/ROP Program on campus at the One Stop on 10/12/2020. Zulema was a wonderful and delightful student in class. She graduated from the class on 12/13/2020 and earned a certificate of completion. Zulema prepared and studied immensely for her CNA state exam and passed on the first attempt. In addition, the WIOA Program helped Zulema with resume building and job search. Zulema interviewed with Yuba City Post Acute for a CNA position and was hired on the spot. Zulema has been working there for about 4 months and absolutely loves it. She loves working with patients and all of the staff. Zulema is living proof that anyone can overcome barriers and obstacles in order to achieve their goals! We are so proud of Zulema and wish her the best on future endeavors. 

“I want to appreciate the help of the Sutter One Stop. All of the staff members helped me achieve my goals. I want to thank Dora Maldonado, Balwinder Singh, Bobby Chima, Irene Ssebagereka and Analicia Perez for guiding me. I’m very grateful and appreciative of the programs. I’m now working as a CNA! Thank you” -Zulema Avalos

SCSOS Board Member Spotlight
Jim Richmond has served on the Sutter County Superintendent of Schools Board of Education for the past ten years. During his tenure, he has seen a lot of change, but he continues to be steadfast in his advocacy for and dedication to ROP/CTE for students and Shady Creek. “ROP/CTE is my passion due to my skills and what I’ve done in life,” Jim said.

Jim currently serves as a plant supervisor for Sutter Buttes Ag which is a company that assembles tractors and ships them to 150 dealerships throughout the United States. Before moving to Yuba City in 1999, he and his wife, Sandy lived in Belmont, California. Jim has over 40 years in the auto exhaust business. He worked for Midas Mufflers and an independent shop before opening his own auto muffler business in Colma. After moving to Yuba City, he worked for Valley Muffler for 16 years.

When Jim and his family moved to Yuba City, they bought a house in the Franklin School District. His twin daughters, Andi and Lea, attended Franklin from kindergarten through 8th grade. Jim was elected to the Franklin School board in 2011 and he served until after his daughters graduated from the 8th grade. He was on the Franklin School Board when the bond was passed and the multi-purpose room was built.

During his tenure as Franklin School board member, Jim also served as a board member for the Shady Creek Foundation. He worked at the Franklin School Fireworks booth every fourth of July in order to raise money for every 5th grade student to go to Shady Creek each year. Jim served as a board member on the Shady Creek Foundation for nine years.

As a board member for Sutter County Superintendent of Schools, Jim says he will continue to advocate for more ROP/CTE classes for students. He will also continue to advocate for and support Shady Creek. 
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