Spring Grove School Board members met in the school’s learning resource center on Monday, April 18 from 7-8:47 p.m.
Board members present included Chairman Aaron Solum, Stephanie Jaster, Rhan Flatin, Aric Elton, Kelly Rohland, and Jenny Stender.
The board approved the consent agenda, including the meeting agenda and the minutes from the Monday, March 21 regular board meeting, and financials.
Upon approving Kody Moore’s resignation, the school thanked Moore for his service to the district as varsity girls basketball coach.
Phil Griffin is the new JV baseball coach.
Superintendent Rachel Udstuen mentioned that the Washington D. C. trip was a real treat for her to go on and to experience firsthand. The trip is a “positive learning experience for the kids,” said Udstuen. “Our kids get compliments everywhere they go.” Udstuen “tipped her hat” to Al Lockner and Kelsey Morken for organizing a great trip.
At last month’s board meeting Assistant Superintendent Gina Meinertz shared with the board what the school had been hearing from the parents and students regarding marching band. Udstuen explained at this month’s meeting that the school’s primary goal is to offer a music program during the day and some students are not participating in the music program because of marching band. Udstuen clarified, “When we don’t have marching band in the next couple of years, it is not a budget cut. We are not cutting marching band we are listening to what our parents and students are saying they want.”
The science lab project is moving forward. The engineer documents will be completed at the end of the week and OWArchitects expects to go out to bid next week. The plan is to complete the project this summer.
Udstuen explained that the 4K preschool agreement with Little Gnome has not been signed but the process is moving forward and is scheduled to start in September. The plan is to offer a half day program in the school building four days a week. There will be two sections 8:30-11:30 a.m. and 12:15-3:15 p.m. The school will provide mid-day transportation for those families that need it. The School Readiness coordinator Bethany Bergsgaard will be the 4K teacher. The school will also oversee the director at Little Gnome. It was noted that there would be a cost to attend, and scholarships will be offered. The school is currently filling out the Parent Aware paperwork which provides free resources for parents needing quality childcare and early education programs. The school has talked with Berry Patch and Little Lions. Udstuen stated that there are still unknowns, but the school will work through the unknowns and the state is available to help. Udstuen summarized the discussion by stating, “We are in the business of figuring things out.”
According to the Minnesota Statue (MS) 120A.42, schools are allowed to hold school on the following holidays – Martin Luther King’s Birthday, President’s Day, Columbus Day, and Veteran’s Day – provided there is an agreement in place. The board approved the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Spring Grove Education Association/River Valley Education Association Chapter and the school board to hold school on the four legal holidays listed above.
The music department and the drama club asked the board to approve an optional frozen food fundraiser since neither group was able to hold previously scheduled fundraisers for various reasons, such as vendors that went out of business or are unavailable and COVID. The students have located a replacement frozen food vendor and asking to hold the fundraiser this spring.
The board went into closed session at 8:10 p.m. for Superintendent Udstuen’s evaluation and returned to regular session at 8:46 p.m.
The next regular board meeting of the Spring Grove Public School Board is scheduled for Tuesday, May 16. The meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. in the school’s learning resource center. In addition, the school continues to offer board meetings on Google Meet for anyone who would like to attend virtually. For assistance monitoring the meeting, contact the district office at (507) 498-3221 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.