The Spring Grove School board met on Tuesday evening, March 15, 2021, from 7-7:45 p.m. in the school’s Learning Resource Center, adhering to the Governor’s guidelines for capacity (maximum 10 people). Board members in attendance Chairman Aaron Solum, Stephanie Jaster, Kelly Rohland, Jenny Stender, Rhan Flatin, and Aric Elton.
The board unanimously approved the March 15 agenda minutes from the February 22, 2021, regular board meeting, and the treasurer’s report/approval of bills. The board also accepted junior high baseball coach Kody Moore’s resignation and extended the contract of in-house substitute teacher Tim Opat through April 30, 2021.
2021-2022 school year
Planning for the 2021-2022 school year is underway. The school asked students, teachers, and parents for feedback regarding what worked and did not work this past year. According to Gina Meinertz, “We got really good feedback and found common themes and hidden voices.”
A sampling of some of the common themes identified: Wednesdays are favorable and preferred; Google classroom is liked, and Zoom is great; more PE in middle school; more outdoor time for middle school; and comfortable seating in outdoor classrooms.
Examples of hidden voices include art better in person, students want access to a microwave, and record concerts.
The spring ACT, AP, MCA, and MTAS testing is scheduled. Please check the school website for specific dates and times for each grade.
Superintendent Udstuen announced that the seniors’ trip to Washington, D.C., will not happen this year. The school will schedule a conversation with the seniors and let students steer the conversation regarding what they would like to do that week.
Based on COVID-19 numbers, prom and graduation can be held indoors. If held outdoors, seniors will invite four guests compared to two if graduation is held indoors.
The Drama Club will be performing Mamma Mia on May 1 at the Fest Building. Watch the school’s website and Fillmore County Journal for more information as it becomes available.
The board unanimously approved the 2020-21 Revised Revenue/Expenditure Budget. Tanya Elton, district accountant, summarized the school’s financial position. “We are deficit spending. We had a healthy fund balance coming into this school year to absorb the deficit.” The school is also anticipating additional federal funds, which have been approved but not released. Superintendent Udstuen added, “We are anticipating spending down some fund balance. Having some will be used for those facility upgrades – science labs, bathrooms.”
The Board accepted the retirement of social studies teacher Al Lochner. Lochner did not request a retirement incentive, which is indicative of teachers that plan to continue teaching. Udstuen mentioned that Lochner intends to apply for the part-time social studies teacher’s position and is interested in coaching.
The next regular meeting of the Spring Grove Public School Board of Directors is scheduled for April 19 at 7 p.m. The school board, administration, and business manager will meet in person (10 maximum). The school will continue to offer the board meetings on Google Meet for anyone else who would like to attend. For assistance monitoring the meeting, contact the district office at (507) 498-3221 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.