The Carson City School District did not have a special-education program before Ruth Aberasturi came on board. Nor did it have a policy for naming buildings.
But Tuesday night, the school board approved a policy that requires that three years must pass from the last day of paid employment before a district building can be named after a former employee.
That means the student-support services building can be named somewhat immediately for any number of public or private individuals, but years before it can named for Aberasturi, its former director.
Several of her former co-workers spoke during public comment and asked the board to name the building in her honor.
"She has not only been an inspiration in the Carson City School District, but statewide," said Liz Isaacs, a speech pathologist with the district. "She is revered."
Aberasturi, who retired in late May after 37 years, was not at the meeting and is not involved in her former co-workers' request.
"Ruth Aberasturi is the epitome of why we name buildings after people," said James Hukari, president of the school board. " ... Ruth Aberasturi gave her whole life to the school district."
He added that it was her handling of the special-ed program that prevented the district from suffering litigation costs.
"For how much money she saved our district, compared with our neighbors to the north and south, she could have bought buildings and put her name on it," he said.
Trustee John McKenna said naming buildings after people turns the matter into a "popularity contest." He also added that people's names should be given to facilities only after they have died.
Under the new policy, a committee will be formed to consider applications for building names.
Superintendent Mary Pierczynski said she had been approached by several people this year with suggestions for names of facilities. She brought the matter to the board.
At the July 26 meeting, Pierczynski presented a proposed policy based primarily on ones used by the Washoe and Clark County school districts. Tuesday's reading was the second reading of the policy.
The student-support services facility remains without a name.
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