During the Mabel-Canton School Board meeting on September 20, Superintendent Gary Kuphal updated the board on the facilities project that is ongoing and nearing completion. Because September and October usually have at least a few quite warm days in store, he said there’s a possibility that temporary air conditioning units may be needed. Kuphal summarized that if such units as needed, it would cost “roughly $6,000 per month” to have three temporary units used.
Diane Wilder asked for additional discussion of a topic the board had discussed last month. During the August meeting, the board voted to honor Karl Urbaniak, who recently retired after a legendary coaching career at Mabel-Canton. The decision had been to install a sign on the “crow’s nest” at the football stadium. Wilder said she feels that something more should be done to honor Urbaniak. Several others voiced opinions, agreeing with the idea of doing more, but also cognizant of the possibility that eventually, the school district could have other staff members deserving of similar honors.
Kuphal added another factor for the board to consider. He said that following the August board meeting, work began at LetterWerks on a sign for the “crow’s nest” but that Kuphal had talked to staff there, asking how soon a final decision on exact wording of the sign was needed. He said the board needed to make a final decision during this meeting, in order for the sign to be ready for the planned unveiling.
Kuphal shared that he had talked with roughly eight school administrators in the area where longtime service and contributions by staffmembers have been honored in some manner. He summarized that none of the schools he contacted have anything resembling a “standard process” in which to determine when (or how) such honors are bestowed. After a productive give-and-take discussion, the board voted unanimously to install a sign on the crow’s nest, designating the football field as “Karl Urbaniak Field”.
Principal Michelle Wiedemann updated the board on Mabel-Canton’s COVID guidelines. She summarized changes from the guidelines the board had approved in August. She explained that COVID testing is no longer a requirement, but that the school will have such tests available, including some tests that can be sent home with students, if needed.
Principal Wiedemann also said that Homecoming events are right around the corner, with coronation on Sunday, September 25. She added that the football game will be on Saturday, October 1, at 1pm. Regarding the Homecoming parade, she stated, “Our route is going to flip. Usually, we end up at the bank. We are now going to go to the Community Center, and end there, because they will be (them, and the Fire Department) will be donating tailgating for the students this year.”
Kuphal led a discussion about Mabel-Canton’s plans to begin strategic planning. He reminded the board that the expectation is to develop a large and diverse Strategic Planning Committee. He asked each board member to email him three names of potential committee members from the general public. Meeting dates for the fall were set.
The board gratefully acknowledged recent donors, including Larry Gifford ($50 for school supplies), United Methodist Church of Mabel ($100 for Football team activities and $250 for school supplies), Mike & Heather Kleiboer (Cougar Club Football Recognition Sign, $275 value), Karl Urbaniak & Lana Hollar ($20 for recess equipment), Scheie Lutheran Church ($600 for milk break and $50 for school supplies), Marilyn Eiken & Run from the Sun Melanoma Awareness Committee (sunscreen for students and staff), and Lance Rasmussen ($100 to cheerleaders account).
Regarding the recent “clean up day”, Kuphal said there were about 70 who participated, including cheerleaders, volleyball and football players. He stated, “Well attended, everybody worked hard… Thank you to those who were at that.” The board’s next meeting will be Tuesday, October 18 at 6pm. The public is welcome at all open meetings.