The Chatfield School Board met on October 22, 2018, in the high school forum room. All board members were present except Katie Priebe and Matt McMahon. Others attending were Superintendent Ed Harris, Karyl Lyons, business manager; Lorri Lowrey, administrative assistant; Kristi Cook, technology integration specialist and LuAnn Kleven, community education director. Student senate members present were Landon Bance and Peter Hebrink.
Four students, calling themselves the Green Team, gave a presentation to the board about a project they are pursuing in Mrs. Gathje’s Environmental Science class. Members Sabina Boettcher, Maddison Collett, Katie Ihrke and Ann Warren explained their project through a slide show of how they would like to increase recycling in the high school. They gave many examples of how they will accomplish this. Following this, Nora Gathje was recognized by the board and congratulated for being chosen the Minnesota Science Teachers Association Teacher of the Year.
Superintendent Harris and Jerry Chase discussed briefly the meetings that were held concerning facility use and fundraisers. Scott Backer reported that a company has been recommended for a site study for HVED (Hiawatha Valley Education District). Harris discussed the plans for the open house that will be on November 29 at the high school from 5-7 p.m. with a complimentary meal as a “thank you” to district patrons.
Student council members Landon Bance and Peter Hebrink reported that homecoming was a great success, with new games at the pep fest and a record attendance of around 400 students attending Gopher Fest. They said they are now planning activities for snow week.
Kristi Cook, technology integration specialist, presented a slide show that explained that all teachers K-12 are now using Schoology. Schoology is a tool parents can use to access newsletters, major school events and for older students, course assignments. Grades K-2 have parent access only and Grades 3-12 have both student and parent access. If parents have questions about Schoology they can go to SchoologyRollout@chatfield.k12.mn.us for help. Other technology related items were personalized learning opportunities in the elementary, digital citizenship classes in the third grade and a classroom set of virtual reality headsets for the high school.
LuAnn Kleven told the board that moving her office to the elementary building was a positive one, as this is where most of her programs are held. Valleyland is now certified through the Department of Human Services so they may serve families receiving child care assistance. Preschool numbers have increased this year and a new ECFE class has been added. STEM classes will begin in November and they hope to add chess classes this year and a fencing camp this summer. This winter, community education will sponsor a beginning sewing class and an introduction to Zumba for adults.
Elementary principal, Shane McBroom discussed the change made to the school day to eliminate wait times in the afternoon. The dismissal bell has been changed to 2:55 p.m. Parent-teacher conferences had an outstanding 95% parent attendance. Officer Landorf of the Chatfield Police Department has been welcoming students to school on Wednesdays and will start DARE lessons with first graders soon.
Randy Paulson, high school principal, reported that Chatfield High School has been chosen by National Geographic as a test site to screen the movie, Science Fair, on Friday, November 16 at 7 p.m. in the forum room. Admission is free. This month a Three Screen presentation called “Fix It” was presented to the high school students. It focused on situations that students can control and fix. The first fire drill was held on Monday with the new alarm system and everything went well. Mr. Paulson gave an update on the future of Flex Time, a new addition to this year’s schedule. Students will soon be able to schedule an activity during Flex Time. The next step is training staff and students on how the scheduling process works.
The consent agenda was approved that included the September 19, 2018, meeting minutes and the school year 2018-2019 seniority list. Resignations approved were elementary paraprofessional Jennifer Biers and seventh grade girls basketball coach, Ryan Kivimagi. Approved job postings were elementary paraprofessional and seventh grade girls basketball coach. New hires approved were ninth grade girls basketball coach, Matt McMahon and elementary paraprofessional, Krista Schild. Assistant coaches approved for girls basketball were Kyle Tollefson and Scott Schmaltz, and for boys basketball, Ryan Eppen, Matt Davidson, Damien Nickelson and Josh Berhow. Wrestling assistant coaches approved were Matt Mauseth and Zach Curry. Brenda Nelson was approved as an assistant dance coach.
Under New Business, a School Board Coaching policy was addressed by board chair, Jerry Chase. He stressed the need to create a policy for future use by the board. Superintendent Harris offered to draft a policy for the board to use as a starting point.
The meeting was adjourned. The next meeting will be November 19 at 7 p.m. in the high school forum room. Open house for the high school renovation will be November 29 from 5-7 p.m.