Chairman Aaron Solum called the Spring Grove, Minn., School Board September 18 meeting to order at 7 p.m. Board members present included Stephanie Jaster, Kelly Rohland, Rhan Flatin, Aaron Solum and Angie Solie. Board member absent was Aric Elton.
Student Council Representative Liam Rohland announced that Spring Grove’s homecoming is the week of October 9–13. Coronation is scheduled for Monday morning at 8:30 a.m. and the public is invited to attend. Friday morning, October 13, students in 7th-12th grade will build floats on the one-way street. The parade will kick off on Friday afternoon at 2 p.m. and will head down the main street to Viking Memorial Park followed by presentations. The DJ for the dance after the football game on Friday evening is the new Social Studies teacher, Thomas Dunkle.
Superintendent Rachael Udstuen introduced Taylor Reinhardt and her role on the school board. Reinhardt will represent the students on the board. In the future, Udstuen and Reinhardt will meet prior to the board meeting to discuss the meeting agenda and where Reinhardt might want to express her perspective on a specific topic. Udstuen added that the board is welcome to ask Reinhardt for her perspective as well on a subject matter. Udstuen did say that Reinhardt can let the board know that she will get back to them if she would like to have more time to think about the question.
The school board unanimously approved the consent agenda in its entirety, including the meeting agenda, the August 21 regular board meeting minutes, and the treasurer’s report and bills totaling $454,051.54.
The consent agenda included authorizing Udstuen to act as the Official with Authority for the Spring Grove School District as required by the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE); approved contracts with Rachel Storlie, elementary music teacher; Tom Dunkle, Washington D.C. advisor; Lexi Thorson, yearbook advisor; Melody Oakes, dishwasher; Morgan Buckland, assistant cook; and Tim Morken, junior high boys basketball assistant coach. The board accepted the resignation of Peggy Landsom, assistant cook.
Principal Luke Kjelland reviewed the 2022-23 Bluff Country Collaborative annual report with board members. He announced that 17 students are enrolled in flex courses through Edgnuity, and students are enrolled in animation, criminology, nutrition and wellness, agribusiness, plus other classes.
Assistant Superintendent Gina Meinertz updated the board on her weekly meetings with new staff, which are proving to be extremely helpful. She reported that the school purchased the book “Uncovering the Logic of English” for each teacher, and that there are about 10 students who are interested in the heavy equipment apprenticeship pathway program. She is coordinating the preschool/head start program, supporting community partnerships, providing leadership coaching, and is activating the rural grant.
MDE Commissioner Willie L. Jett II signed the commissioner’s review of the proposed “two question bond referendum on November 7, 2023. Udstuen noted that it was published in the September 18 issue of the Fillmore County Journal as required. Early voting starts Friday, September 22, for the upcoming school referendum. If parents or community members have questions, they are encouraged to contact Udstuen.
In other business, the board:
• Approved the Minnesota School Boards Association (MSBA) student directory information.
• Passed the resolution to waive 2% of the school’s basic revenue for staff development.
• Approved the proposed 2023 payable 2024 property tax levy at the maximum level. It was noted that this allows for any changes between now and the end of the year.
• Adjourned the meeting at 7:52 p.m.
The next regular meeting of the Spring Grove Public School Board is on Monday, October 16 at 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) 98-3221 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.