Congratulations--This summer, students from Denfeld High School participated in the Scott D. Anderson Leadership Forum.
The Forum provides high-quality, values-based leadership training and development opportunities for youth. Participating students: Ryan Benson, Lucy Billings, Kaitlin Marsaa, Brianna Montgomery, Thomas Stolee, Zane Peterson, Tyler Eaton, Liz Bergh, Crystal Armstrong and Chloe Conito- Page.
--The Duluth East Daredevils Robotic Team received a $5,000 check from the Lahti Foundation during a Duluth Huskies Baseball game in July. The Daredevils brought their robot, Control Y, to throw foam Huskies baseballs for children to catch on the field.
--Jake Turner, Duluth East, was named to the Minnesota State High School League Baseball Coaches Association All State Team for 2014. Turner was also honored as the Duluth News Tribune’s baseball player of the year. Chris Olson, Frankie Hanson and Jake Turner, Duluth East, were named to the Tribunes All Area Team for 2014.
--John Rudolph, Duluth East Baseball coached was recently honored by being named to the Play Ball Minnesota North coach staff. He coached the north squad with Kyle Wojtysiak of Proctor and Frank Ivancich of Ely.
School Board Recognizes ISD 709 Child Nutrition Department
During their regular July meeting, Duluth
School Board members took time to recognize the ISD 709 Child Nutrition
Department for passing rigorous federal and state audits. Representatives
accepting the award include:
--Pam Bowe, Manager and
--Sheila Oak, Area Supervisor
--Betsy Sislo, Site
--Kathie Johnson, Cafe
Manager, Duluth East High School
--Debbie Mckowski, Cafe
Manager, Ordean East
--Liz Russell, Cafe Manager,
--Jodi Puff, Summer Cafe
Manager, Lester Park
--Patti Barber, Cafe Manager,
Laura Mac Arthur
--Wendy Wakefield, Cafe
--Susan Geissler, Cafe
Earlier this year, food service programs at
Duluth East, Lakewood and Ordean East passed a rigorous Federal/State audit by
the Minnesota Food and Nutrition Department.
The ISD 709 Child Nutrition program also passed a Summer Audit and
Review conducted by the US Department of Agriculture with flying colors. School
district food service programs are regularly audited and must pass to remain
part of the USDA food service program.
The audits reviewed many areas including,
but not limited to: Student applications; Daily
business procedures in the kitchens, managers’ office and Child Nutrition Main
office; HACCP compliance; Health Department Reports; Breakfast
and lunch menu analysis (both nutritional and financial); ISD 709
Wellness policy, sanitation, daily meal counts, the monthly financial claim and
The auditors were complimentary
of the systems in place to serve appetizing meals to students within USDA/State
Accepts National Award for Think Kids Project
During its annual conference
in July, the National School Public Relations Association presented ISD 709
with a 2014 Gold Medallion Award for the Think Kids Community
Conversation. Superintendent Bill
Gronseth accepted the award on behalf of all those who worked on this important
“There were many people
involved in helping make Think Kids successful, from city, business and
non-profit leaders to parents, students, teachers and staff,” said
Gronseth. “We know amazing things can
happen when the community works together to support education and Think Kids is
a great example.”
The Gold Medallion Award is the
highest award given by the Association in recognition of outstanding school communication programs.
Social Studies Adoption
The K-5 Social Studies
Committee has completed the curriculum review process for Elementary Social
Studies. As a result of this extensive
review, which included curriculum writing, review/aligning benchmarks, and evaluating
materials from several vendors, it was determined that the components required
for Social Studies delivery, as well as content literacy needs, will best be
met with the purchase of the Pearson-Prentice Hall My World Social Studies
The components of this
program fit the need for social studies delivery as well as content literacy
and allows for flexibility in terms of instructional texts and leveled readers
to promote growth in reading among diverse learners. The total cost of the adoption is
7 and 8 Social Studies Adoption
The Middle School Social
Studies Committee, including all middle school social studies teachers, has
completed the curriculum review process for Middle School Social Studies. Based on an extensive review process, which
included reviewing/aligning benchmarks, curriculum writing, and evaluating
materials, it was determined that Pearson-Prentice Hall American History and My
World Geography are the best fit with regards to benchmarks.
For example, the American
History text fits the unique time period set out by the benchmarks as it is a
custom Minnesota version and the overall layout of the text and individual
pages is student-friendly and at the appropriate level. Differentiated reading level materials are
available and included. The total cost
of the adoption is $122,048.64.
YouthTheatre presents “Constellation
Revelation and the Big Space”
Students in the Hillside
Youth Theatre program at Myers-Wilkins Elementary School are excited to perform
an original musical play production, Constellation Revelation and The Big
Space. The public is invited to attend.
Matinee Performances: July 23, 24, and 25 at 1:00PM
Performances: July 24 (special
fund raising event beginning at 5:00 with appetizers, music, and
auction, $15 donation; play performance 7:00PM) and July 25 at 7:00PM
Performances will be held in the Myers-Wilkins Auditorium at East
High School (301 N. 40th Ave. East)
Admission is free (with the exception of the July 24 evening
must be accompanied by an adult.
The script, written by local playwright Jean
Sramek, takes the audience on a comedic adventure as they explore the mysteries
and wonders of space through different historical and cultural perspectives.
Mythology and science entwine as characters take you on an adventure
through the universe to unravel the mystery about the true identification of
For More Information: Jen Eddy,
Ph: 218-336-8860 x8 or Jen.firstname.lastname@example.org
Minnesota Immunization Laws
laws protect everyone because high immunization levels prevent disease
outbreaks. Minnesota has various laws requiring immunizations for children
and adults enrolled in child care, school, and college settings. Legal
exemptions are allowed - both for medical reasons and conscientiously held
Laws require all students to provide documentation of vaccination or a legal
exemption in order to enroll or remain enrolled in school or in a childcare
--Students whose families do not provide documentation of
vaccination or a legal exemption may be excluded from school.
--We want all children to be in school – please take steps to
provide documentation of vaccination or to file legal exemption with your
new state immunization requirements for schools, child care and early childhood
programs begin September 1, 2014. They include new requirements for students
entering 7th Grade and students enrolled in childcare and early childhood
--For a list of required immunizations, check the August
ISD 709 Back To School Packet for a list of Frequently Asked Questions and
the “Are Your Kids Ready?” Immunization Schedule. Or, check the
Minnesota Department of Health Website: www.health.state.mn.us/divs/idepc/immunize/arekidsnew.pdf
--To obtain documentation of your child’s vaccinations,
contact your healthcare provider or call the Minnesota Immunization
Information Connection at 651-201-5503 or 1-800-657-3970.
--To have your child immunized contact your healthcare
provider or the St. Louis County Department of Health at 218-725-5210 or toll
-- Parents may file a medical exemption signed by a health care
provider or a conscientious objection signed by a parent/guardian and notarized.
Notary services are
available at no cost through ISD 709 Administration. Please call to make an
--ISD 709 Office of the Superintendent: 218-336-8752
--ISD 709 Human Resources: 218-336-8718
--ISD 709 Business Services: 218-336-8704
Notary services may also be available at low or no cost from
banks, county government centers, local city hall or city managers.
Information Available from the MN Department of Health:
Board Approves FY 2015 Budget Investments to Reduce Class Size, Raise
Achievement and Update Curriculum
During the June 17 meeting, the
School Board approved the budget for the fiscal 2015 school year. Investments
include priorities identified through the Think Kids initiative, including about
$1.45 million to hire additional teachers to reduce class size, $150 thousand
for enriching and renewing curriculum, and $200 thousand to go towards improving
student achievement. Together, they represent the $1.8 million gained through the second
education levy question.
About $3 million will be held
and used to keep those investments in place over time and provide financial
stability, given there’s no guarantee of an increase in the state formula beyond
the 2014-15 school year. The Board also approved $275,000 toward aligning
curriculum with State benchmarks and standards over the summer, $85,000 to
support state mandated changes to employer contributions for pension plans,
$200,000 for the modified closed high school campuses and about $275,000 in
By choosing to invest
conservatively, steps taken to reduce class size and impact student achievement
and curriculum can be maintained over a longer period of time.
2014-15 General Fund Reserve Projected at $9.6
The ISD 709 General Fund Reserve is
projected at about $9.6 million for 2014-15.
Board policy requires maintenance of a reserve of about 10% of
expenditures and building the reserve comes with
recommendation from Moody’s Investor Service and the ISD 709 Community Finance
Committee in order to provide financial stability.
School Board Honors Pheasants Forever of St. Louis/Carlton County for Outdoor
During their regular June
meeting, members of the Duluth School Board took time to recognize Pheasants
Forever of St. Louis & Carlton County for its work in creating the Habitat
for Homecroft outdoor classroom and donating curriculum and equipment to the
school. Phil Storsteen, Chapter President; Matthew Bremer, Chapter Vice
President; and David Lood, Chapter Youth Director, were present for the
Habitat for Homecroft
helps provide hands-on learning about wildlife ecology, conservation and biology
within a natural environment. Curriculum and equipment donated by Pheasants
Forever will allow all grades to explore, photograph and study nature with a
"hands-on" approach in the outdoor
classroom. During the meeting Pheasants Forever presented a check for $2,500 to ISD 709 to support the Lester Park Elementary School Forest bridge project.
709 Teachers Work Together To Align Curriculum
Nearly 100 ISD 709 elementary,
middle and high school teachers are working this summer to review and revise
curriculum documents used to demonstrate alignment to the latest Minnesota
standards and benchmarks. Aligning curriculum is akin to creating a map which
shows, step by step, where classrooms are going with each subject and how
they’re going to get there.
Both the Minnesota Department
of Education and school districts review and update their curricular “maps” for
mathematics, English language arts, science and social studies on a regular
“This is the real work of
educators,” said Superintendent Bill Gronseth. “To be in deep discussions about
what we want our students to know and be able to do as a result of their
educational career in ISD 709 and how we ensure all students have continued
access to an excellent education.”
Aligning curriculum to state
standards is an important goal in the ISD 709 4-year Continuous Improvement Plan
and is an expectation of the Minnesota Department of Education. Once alignment
is complete, formative assessments will be created and teachers will take part
in staff development related to the standards.
Biology Curriculum Approved
The K-12 Science Curriculum
Review Committee completed the review process for General and Honors Biology and
presented their proposal for the adoption of textbooks and supplemental
materials. The Committee recommended and the School Board approved investing
$103,176 toward purchase of Glencoe Biology by Mader from
Youth Educational Systems (AYES) Curriculum Approved
Members of the Automotive
Program Business Advisory Committee have completed the Curriculum Review process
for updating and maintaining national certification. The Committee recommended
and the School Board approved purchase of the CDX Automotive Curriculum for
AYES provides opportunities for
real-life applications of knowledge gained in the classroom, especially math,
science and communication skills, and offers academic and on-the-job challenges
in accordance with the highest standards for automotive technical programs in
We Play” Coaches Training Event
Over 100 coaches and
administrators from Denfeld, Duluth East, Cloquet, Hermantown, and Proctor
gathered at Denfeld High School for a training event called, “Why We Play.”
Staff from the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) presented the
conference, organized by school activity directors.
Jody Redman, Associate Director
of the MSHSL, and Tom Cody, Hall of Fame basketball coach, led a discussion that
participating schools hope will influence a culture, approach and philosophy
intentionally focused on students first, and athletes that want to challenge
themselves beyond winning.
Redman said that while winning
is certainly a goal, the purpose of an athletic/extra-curricular activity is to
help students challenge themselves emotionally, socially and behaviorally, to
compete and grow beyond winning.
“It’s really about creating
awareness around doing what we do,” Redman said. “It’s human growth and
development of kids and connecting them to their schools. Our goal is to win,
we’re going to plan, prepare and do all those things to try to win but it is not
Redmond added that
youth-level parents and coaches might benefit from answering four questions
asked in Joe Ehrmann’s book, “Inside Out Coaching;” Why do I coach? Why do I
coach the way I do? How does it feel to be coached by me? How do I define and
“If we’re only
concerned about how a kid dribbles a basketball, then we’re missing an
opportunity to teach kids lessons that will sustain them for their lifetime,”
--Taneasha Muonio, recent graduate of Denfeld High School, is the
recipient of a 2014 Clayton Jackson McGhie Memorial, Inc. Scholarship of
$2500. An avid dancer and musician, a volunteer in several organizations
including Boys and Girls Club Snacktime, Take Back The Night, Blood Drive and
Food Shelf, among others, Taneasha earned and maintained a 4.0 GPA while working
several part-time jobs throughout her high school
--Nikolai Breimon, Lincoln Park Middle School, received the
Apollo-Gilruth Continuum Award for academic excellence. The Duluth
Aviation Institute along with the Lincoln Park Middle School science teachers
presented eleven lessons in aviation science this past semester. Nikolai
excelled in all classroom activities, extra credit projects, 11 plane quizzes
and the post-test. The top 15% students who excelled throughout the program were
rewarded with a Young Eagles Flight from Sky Harbor Airport in
Ordean East Middle School Destination Imagination team- Lauren Nyenhuis, Kianna
Donnellan, Pearl Elliot and Andrea Plewa - competed at Global Finals in
took 19th place, out of 80 teams!
The team participated in the
Pandemonium Improvisational Challenge, which requires participants to create an
original five-minute improvisational skit, develop the interaction between a
character from the past and a contemporary character, show how those characters
work, using the time period, their occupations and skills, to deal with
Pandemonium, and use stage makeup to create, develop, and/or enhance one skit
16,000 people attended the global event and the girls visited with teams from
around the US, as well as Qatar and Mexico.
--Jake Turner and Chris Olson, Duluth East High School, were recently
elected by the Minnesota State High School Baseball Coaches Association to
participate in the Play Ball Minnesota All-Star Series. Jake and Chris were
selected based upon their strong 2014 season. Jake Turner is 6-1 with a 0.88
earned run average. Chris Olson was batting .528 when selected and finished with
a strong .370. They are playing for the North
Lincoln Park Students
Work On Community Improvement Projects
Park Middle School 7th grade students participated in the Kids in the
Community Day. Students, teachers, and chaperones gathered in the auditorium
for a sendoff by Mayor Don Ness and Officer Mike LaFontaine of the Duluth Police
Department. They then headed into the community, focusing on West Duluth, to
work on projects such as trash clean up, trail maintenance/building, gardening,
tree planting, and more!
provided an opportunity for students to give back to their community and learn
outside of the traditional school learning environment. Each student received a
Kids in the Community Day t-shirt which was designed by their classmate,
Lily Bolt. Lincoln Park is looking forward to making this an annual
Denfeld, Duluth East
Students Receive 2014 Hase Family Scholarships
Kemp, Denfeld, and Trygve Rennan, Duluth East, will each receive a $2,500
scholarship from the Hase Family Scholarship Trust. The Trust
honors Fred Hase, who graduated from Duluth Central High School in 1915 and
provides an annual scholarship for two Duluth high school graduates who are
enrolling in a post-secondary school in the fall. Names of
eligible students from each school are provided and two are chosen by random
drawing to receive the scholarships.
Lowell Elementary Service Learning Project Helps Animal
Kindergarten and 3rd grade students from Lowell Elementary helped out
with a Bark and Bake for Animal Allies. Nearly 30 students rolled
dough and cut dog bone shapes to help create animal treats and then helped bag
and label them for use at the annual Walk for Animals event in Duluth.
According to a letter from Animal Allies, “The other part that is so
great is the participation by families in the making of dough and the parental
help the day of the event. It’s so nice to see the teamwork of
teachers, parents, students to do such a positive thing for animals.”
ISD 709 Teachers Receive Grants for Creative Classroom
careful review of
grant applications, the
the Duluth Public Schools Fund (managed by the Duluth
Superior Area Community Foundation)
are pleased to announce awards of over $14,000 to the following
--Elizabeth Chelseth, Laura MacArthur Elementary School - iPads for
Kindergarten: Purchasing of iPads
and educational applications to be used with kindergarten students struggling
with reading or math.
--Adair Ballavance and Ethan Fisher,
Denfeld High School - Senior Wisdom Retreat: The Wisdom Retreat
is a special day for seniors and the culmination for the day helps bring closure
to not only the year, but closure to their public school education.
--Leann M. Udesen, Ordean East
Middle School - Global Access: Purchasing 6
Chromebook computers and a world interactive globe.
--Sheila Larsen Darker, Duluth East
High School - Teaching a Flipped Classroom: Purchasing
Chromebook computers to support a flipped classroom model for teaching
mathematics to high school students performing below grade level.
--Gwyn Curran, Congdon
Park Elementary School - Individual Leveled Learning: Purchasing iPads for kindergarden
students to increase reading, math and writing levels.
--Tanya Hallgren, Laura MacArthur
Elementary School - Literacy in Kindergarten: Purchasing of appropriate level
books and other hands-on literacy tools in a kindergarten
--Tanya Hallgren, Laura MacArthur
Elementary School - Social Studies for Kindergartners: Purchasing Social Studies
discovery tools -- a hands-on way to promote learning and the development of
higher level thinking skills.
--Nathan Norman, Ordean East Middle
School - Closing the Achievement Gap: Purchasing a license to use the
web-based ALEKS mathematics software.
--Tanya Hallgren, Laura MacArthur
Elementary School - Scientific Kindergartners: Purchasing
Scientific discovery tools -- a hands-on way to promote learning and the
development of higher level thinking skills.
--Tanya Jackson, Piedmont Elementary
School - Lego Robotics at Piedmont: Funding support for
a Lego Robotics Club at Piedmont Elementary School.
Since 1996, the DPSF has distributed grants within ISD
709 ranging from
show creativity and
classroom experiences for
Duluth Public School students. Since it
began making grants, the
Duluth Public Schools by over
For more information about the
Duluth Public Schools Fund, its
grant program, or
how to contribute to
the Fund, please contact Chairman Scott Fisher at
Jon Blevins, Development Officer, Duluth Superior Area Community
218 726-0232 (email@example.com) or http://www.duluthpublicschoolsfund.com
--Lauren Hesch, Duluth East High School, is the recipient of
Lowenstine Honors Scholarship from Conserve School. This scholarship, valued
at more than $15,000, is awarded on a competitive basis to students who
demonstrate academic achievement, character, and commitment to environmental
Duluth East, is the recipient of a Minnesota Agriculture in the Classroom Grant
for School Gardens. The award of $400 will be used to purchase
soil for the Duluth East High School Garden. The garden is a school-wide project
led by students in the Agriculture Science classes and FFA.
Elementary Grandparents Day/Memorial Day Event
Last week, students
at Lowell Elementary held a special day to honor grandparents. They invited
their elder relatives and friends to visit the school and take part in several
activities, including an outdoor program in honor of Memorial Day. The program included raising of the American
flag, several student speakers, singing of the National Anthem and an honor
Volunteers Needed for 6th
Annual Congdon Trail Run May 31
Volunteers are needed to help out the day of
the 6th Annual Congdon Cougar Chase Trail Run, Saturday May 31, 2014, through
the beautiful trails of Lester River Park. Events start at 8:00AM and include a
0.5 Kitty K, 1K, 5K run/walk, and 10K run. Proceeds will be used to purchase
Chromebooks and a charging cart for Congdon Park Elementary. If you’re willing
to help, visit congdoncougarchase.com to sign up or visit Facebook for more
information and registration.
Ordean East Middle
School Duluth History Projects On Display May 29
Ordean East Middle School 6th graders are
having an open house to show off their hard work creating amazing Duluth
History projects. The event will be held in the Ordean East Middle School
Cafeteria, 2900 East Fourth Street, on Thursday, May 29th from 3:30PM - 5:30PM.
Students will have their exhibits up and will be there to answer questions.
Duluth’s Aquatic Facilities
SUPERVISED OPEN SWIM
Cost: $3, bring your own suit and towel
Perfect for families
and groups. Call first if your group
is 8 or more persons.
Lincoln Park Community Pool, 3215 West Third
June 9 – July 31, Monday – Thursday 1:00PM to 3:00PM
(no open swim June
30 – July 4)
Ordean East Community Pool, 2900 East Fourth
June 9 – July 31, Monday – Thursday 1:00PM – 3:00PM
(no open swim June
30 – July 4)
For more information:
Students Identify Recipe for School Cafeteria Use
and Consumer Science students at Lincoln Park and Ordean East Middle Schools
took part in a Hummus Recipe Test Kitchen project. Students learned about bean
varieties and cultivation, then taste tested beans and executed 5-7 different
hummus recipes to identify a final recipe for use in ISD 709 middle school
project grew out of a request from the ISD 709 Child Nutrition Department for a
new way to use canned beans. The hummus
test kitchen project was coordinated by the Duluth Community Garden Program’s
Healthy School Food Coordinator.
709 is the recipient of a Minnesota Department of Agriculture Farm to School
equipment grant of $24,000, which provides light processing equipment to
increase use of Minnesota and Superior grown produce. The hummus recipe developed by the middle
school students will be among the first used to train middle school food
service staff on this equipment.
Youth Flag Football League Registration Open Until June 6
Flag Football is a non-contact sport which
teaches boys and girls in grades 2 through 5 the fundamentals of football. More importantly, it teaches kids
sportsmanship and how to participate in sports while still having fun. Last year, over 150 students signed up for
this fun activity. Games will be played
primarily on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. All games are played at the Wheeler
Softball Field Complex at 3501 Grand Avenue. Registration fee is $60. Deadline
to register is June 6th. For
more information or to obtain a paper application, call Jesse in the City’s
Parks and Recreation office at 218-730-4314.
-- Congdon Park teacher Cindy Miller
received a $400 grant from the Minnesota Agriculture in the Classroom
Foundation. The money will be used to purchase tools and supplies to sustain a
Three Sisters Garden Integration project. Students will explore the cultural
significance of the survival gardens as well as companion gardening and then
implement what they learn in the Congdon School Community Garden.
-- During East High School Honor Night, the Lakewood School
Foundation and the Lakewood American Legion Post 571 awarded a $1,000 dollar
scholarship to Ashley Herman for her participation and leadership in school and
community activities. This award will be an annual practice. The Lakewood
American Legion provided funds for this scholarship, which is given to former
Lakewood Elementary School students.
2014-15 Calendar Will Be Available at www.ISD709.org
2014-15 Calendar has been revised and was approved by the Duluth School Board
May 20. The new teacher contract, approved by the School Board last month,
provides three additional student contact days at all grades - the calendar has
been changed to reflect the contract.
East Student Receives $3,000 MSBA Scholarship, School Board
During the regular May School Board meeting, representatives from the
Minnesota School Board Association (MSBA) presented Erik Thibault, Duluth East
High School, with their 2014 Student Scholarship of $3,000. MSBA
presents the scholarship to two high school seniors who served as student school
board members - Erik served as a student representative to the Duluth School
Board last year. The Duluth School Board also recognized Erik for
taking 1st Place in the category of Discussion at the 2014 MSHSL
State Speech Tournament and receiving the Wells Fargo Spotlight
on the Arts Award of Excellence.
week, readers of the local newspaper saw an article and a few opinion page items
geared toward discussion of ISD 709 curriculum, particularly music at all
schools and advanced language at Denfeld. Superintendent Bill
Gronseth shared two pieces of information about these topics.
our spring budget planning we invested in music for the coming school year as
opposed to cutting. About $216,000 has been allotted, or the
equivalent of about 2.4 full time music teaching staff, to our middle
regards high school class schedules, staffing decisions are still in
process. Denfeld will be able to offer Spanish V next year, in
part because of additional Federal funding provided for students who receive
free or reduced price lunch. This funding also allows Denfeld to
invest in lower class sizes, additional course sections and other
Gronseth said budget investments for the September 2014 school year are
tied closely to community priorities identified through Think Kids and supported
by passage of the November 2013 Education Levy. For example, next year’s budget
invests about $1.45 million in helping lower class sizes. An
additional $150,000 is invested in updating curriculum, starting with Biology
and with preparations to update Social Studies materials. Funds
have also been allotted next year for proven strategies to help close the
achievement gap – such as professional learning communities to formally bring
teachers together to study individual student data and identify strategies to
“Through the Think Kids community conversation, we know amazing things
can be accomplished when people from our city, business, non-profit and
education communities work together in support of Duluth’s public schools,” said
& Duluth East Robotics Teams Unite at State Tournament
Nation Automation and the Duluth East Daredevils participated in the 2014
Minnesota State High School League/FIRST Robotics State Championship.
After qualification rounds, Denfeld Nation Automation became a team
captain and selected alliance partners Duluth East and Alexandria.
The team quickly became known as “The Duluth Alliance” and placed 4th in
the tournament. Kudos to both teams for their work to
advance the word on Science, Math and Technology!
Receives Donation from Local Pheasants Forever Chapter
Pheasants Forever of
St. Louis & Carlton County, based in Duluth, MN, donated $2,000 worth of
supplies to Homecroft Elementary School. The curriculum and
equipment donated will allow all grades to explore, photograph, and study nature
with a “hands-on” approach in the Habitat for Homecroft outdoor
classroom. Pheasants Forever is a
501.3c non-profit conservation organization dedicated to the protection and
enhancement of wildlife populations in North America through habitat
improvement, land management, public awareness and education.
Congdon Park Students
Study Three Sisters Garden
Park students in Mrs. Miller's 5th grade and Ms. Gallinger’s 3rd grade classes
are studying the history and cultural significance of Three Sisters Gardens. A
grant funded through the Duluth Public Schools Fund provided an opportunity for
students to cook with a Duluth Grill Gardner and Duluth Community Garden Board
Member using corn, beans, and squash.
Students will visit the Ojibwe Demonstration Garden in Cloquet to learn
traditional planting methods and will apply what they learn by growing a Three
Sisters Garden within the Congdon School Community Garden.
Save the Date: the Congdon Annual Plant Sale is
Friday, May 30th. Organic edible & perennial plants, all at great prices!!!
Proceeds go towards sustaining the Congdon School Community Garden.
Cherry & Early Producing Tomatoes * Sweet Peppers * Chilis * Squash *
Fennel * Herbs * Alpine Strawberries * Watermelon & More. Help
Save the Bees & Butterflies with Native Flowers: Purple Cone Flower, Blazing
Stare, Coreopsis, Cosmos.
2014 Summer Meals
summer ISD 709 will provide breakfast and lunch service at several schools,
funded by the USDA Summer Food Service Program. Meals will be provided to all
children 18 years of age and under without charge. Breakfast will be served from
8:00AM to 10:30AM and lunch served from 11:30AM - 1:00PM each day from June 10th
until August 22nd (no service on July 4th) unless otherwise specified below.
Meals are served at the following school cafeterias:
--Denfeld High School, 401 North 44th Avenue West (July 7 – August
--Lincoln Park Middle School, 3215 West Third Street (June 10 - July 3)
MacArthur Elementary, 720 North Central Ave.
Elementary, 5300 Glenwood Street
2000 Rice Lake Road
--Myers-Wilkins Elementary School, 1027 North 8th Avenue
--Piedmont Elementary, 2827 Chambersburg Avenue
715 - 101st Ave. West
Also Available: Brown Bag Lunches at the Lincoln
Park Boys & Girls Club, 2407 West 4th Street!
Menus include a variety of
food items: hot entrees, salads, sandwiches, vegetables, fruits, bread, milk,
and dessert items.
-- ISD 709 FCCLA-HERO students did well at the
State Leadership Conference in Brooklyn Park, MN. State Officer
Sara Lemon, Duluth East, qualified for Nationals in Texas 2014 for her
Distracted Driving Campaign.
Individual winners include:
Children: 2nd, Megan
Borich (Denfeld), 3rd Tevia Stromgren (East)
Maricris Mudek and Brittany Heskin (both Denfeld)
Unlimited: 1st Sara Lemon, 3rd
Dylan Glader (Denfeld)
3N's-nature: 1st Tevia Stromgren,
3rd Brittany Heskin
Total Look in
Cosmetology: 1st Megan Borich, 3rd
Sara Lemon, Honorable Mention Sarah Anderson (East)
Decorating: 1st Brittany Heskin,
2nd Maricris Mudek, 3rd Sarah Anderson, Honorable Mention - Sara
Brittany Heskin, 3rd Megan Borich
Demonstration/Presentation: 1st Sarah Anderson,
Honorable Mention Dylan Glader
Opportunities: 1st Sara Lemon
Community Service and FCCLA planning process, 3rd Sarah Anderson Community
Service and FCCLA planning process, Honorable Mention Sarah Anderson Medical
National Programs in
Action- Distracted Driving: Silver
Award, Sara Lemon
Shining Star Award for
Membership Excellence: Tevia Stromgren,
Immersion Open House
interested families are invited to hear more about the program and receive
Wednesday May 28,
5:15PM – 6:00PM
School, 2000 Rice Lake Road, Duluth, MN 55811
Students from Denfeld High School presented stained glass windows to the Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans (MACV). The windows were created as part of a service learning lesson in which students were asked to do a project that would benefit a community group or organization. Students chose MACV which is located near the school and helps veterans. Students incorporated images into the window designs to convey collective gratitude and a sense of Minnesota serenity.
Receives National School Communication Award
ISD 709 has been
selected to receive a 2014 Gold Medallion Award from the National School Public
Relations Association (NSPRA) for the “Think Kids: Community Vision &
Executive Director, Rich Bagin, APR, said of the project, “This district’s work
to build a community vision for its public schools is exemplary. This is a great
example of a win-win for the community and schools through proactive,
intentional community engagement.”
Superintendent Bill Gronseth expressed thanks to all citizens who
participated in the Think Kids initiative, which informed the ISD 709 Community
Vision and 4-Year Continuous Improvement Plan. He also thanked community leaders
and staff who helped create and implement the conversation.
amazing what can be accomplished when people from our city, business, non-profit
and education communities work together in support of Duluth’s public schools,”
NSPRA’s Gold Medallion Award is the highest
award given by the Association in recognition of outstanding school public
relations programs. The standards are high, as the judges look each year for
those special programs, projects and campaigns that are truly outstanding – that
combine insightful assessment, superb planning, creative communication and
for the Future Host Community Forum on Bullying
May 19, 6:00PM – 8:00PM, Central Hillside Community Center (12 East 4th
Students for the Future will host a
pro-active community forum addressing what Minnesota new safe
school/anti-bullying legislation could mean for students attending ISD 709
includes a 14 minute documentary on diversity, speakers, a presentation on the
specifics of Minnesota’s anti-bullying legislation and brainstorming around the
ideas connected with the video and safe schools. Please think about attending
this important discussion planned and hosted by local youth.
Drive 4UR School” Fundraiser Saturday, May 17th between 10:00AM –
3:00PM at Denfeld HS. This
no strings attached fundraiser is an easy way to test drive a Ford
vehicle and support Denfeld High School activities at the same time.
Test drive a Ford
vehicle in the school parking lot – Denfeld earns $20.
Participants must be
18 or older and have a valid driver’s license.
The $20 donation is
limited to one per household.
This is truly a NO
STRINGS ATTACHED fundraiser – you will not be added to any mailing lists, email
lists or pressured to buy a Ford vehicle.
$6,000 can be raised
if we get 300 people to test drive a vehicle.
Please stop by the
Denfeld parking lot between 10:00 am – 3:00 pm on Saturday, May 17th
to help support Denfeld activities. Contact Tom Pearson at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any
2014-15 ISD 709 Health
Insurance Costs Lower Than Projected
Health insurance costs for ISD709 will be about $450,000 lower than
projected next year. Information received from the Public Employees Insurance
Program (PEIP) indicates a 1.7% increase, most of which is related to the
national health care program.
District employees receive health insurance coverage through the PEIP
Advantage Plan, a group which now includes 64 Minnesota school districts. Since
signing on with this plan in 2010, savings have been realized through lower
fixed costs, higher negotiated discounts, spreading risk over a much larger
group and making employees more accountable for their health care decisions.
Students in the Duluth East and Denfeld CTE Graphic Arts Program designed
logos for the CTE Agriculture/Natural Resources Science Program.
A design created by students Katie Plachta and Kelsey Brantley was
selected for the FFA Forestry Farm logo. The logo will be used for publicity and
labels for the maple syrup made and sold by students in FFA.
Trapp, Duluth East High School, is the recipient of a 2014 Hobey Baker High
School Character Award. The
recognizes, and rewards exemplary character and sportsmanship demonstrated by
high school players.
Elementary School students Darian Lewandowski, Riley Onofreychuk, and Adler
Wormuth received awards at the Inventor’s Fair in Duluth and were invited to
participate in the State Inventor’s Fair in Minneapolis. At
the State competition, Riley and Adler received the Kids Choice Award for their
heated hockey bag.
--Homecroft Elementary School students raised $836.83 for the
Childhood Cancer Fund. Kathy Stenehjem, a
student at Duluth East High School and Key Club member, worked with students to
help raise the funds.
Matthew “Phil” Rannila, Denfeld High School, is
the recipient of the 2014 Goldfine Gold Star Teacher Award. Andy Goldfine, son
of Manley and Lillian Goldfine, made the announcement at a reception Wednesday
evening during which he presented Ranilla with a trophy and a $5,000
Rannila has been an ISD 709 Automotive Systems and Tech teacher
since 1998, after working 9 years in the business industry. An enthusiastic
educator, he uses innovative classroom techniques and equipment to challenge
students and facilitate learning.
His philosophy: “If I allow students
to learn, they will.” He combines the best of both book and hands-on learning,
using state-of-the-art, industry approved technologies and equipment. Students
learn the ins and out of the high tech world of automobile technologies, an area
which, in the United States, enables more than 250 million cars to operate. The
ISD 709 Auto Systems and Tech Program has received superior ratings and is one
of only eight operating in Minnesota.
Rannila dedicates his life,
inside and outside of school, to his profession. According to Principal Jim
Arndt, “Phil not only shares his wealth of knowledge and love of learning with
students, he builds long-term relationships, a rapport that will last a
lifetime.” He has taught and coached winners of the SkillsUSA State
Competition, a pinnacle of achievement in the high school automotive world.
Phil’s colleagues describe his gift for working with students who don’t “fit the
mold” and reference his ability to cut through red tape and get things done. He
partners with higher education and the business community to create increased
opportunities for students to learn and use their skills in real world
He holds a Bachelor’s degree, ASE Master Tech Certification
and is a certified Chrysler technician. He is Chairperson of the Automotive
Business and Education Board, comprised of former and current students, business
organizations and community members with interest and expertise in the
automotive industry. Phil remains current in his field, attending at least 40
hours of seminars and workshops each year. Phil is actively engaged in NATEF
(National Automotive Education Technical Foundation), which allows the program
to be certified at the college level.
Six Duluth Public School middle
and high school teachers were nominated for the award based on several criteria,
including impact in the classroom, school and community, and their efforts to
pursue professional development. Phil Ranilla was selected for the award by
committee through a competitive application process.
Manley and Lillian
Goldfine established a fund for the Gold Star Teacher Award in 2006 through the
Duluth Superior Area Community Foundation, to honor inspirational teachers for
their dedication, skills and hard work. Last year elementary school teachers
were nominated for the award; this year secondary school teachers were
Duluth School Board Approves 2013-15 and
2015-17 Teacher Contracts
During a meeting held May 6 in Historic Old
Central High School, the Duluth School Board approved two teacher contracts
which add time to the school year and provide an opportunity for further
discussion regarding strategies to support student achievement.
“Having the contracts in place provides for
long-term planning and stability,” said Superintendent Bill Gronseth. “The
additional instructional time will benefit our students."
--Provide an additional nine minutes of student time at the high
schools and three
additional student contact days at all grades
--Provide compensation for curriculum work that will take place
over the summer of 2014
--Help manage health insurance costs by raising the threshold for
coverage and maintaining HRA contributions at current levels
--Provide an additional $500 for elementary teachers instructing
more than one grade in a class
--Provide a salary schedule of 0% and 2%/plus 1% for additional
student time in 2013-15, with 2% and 2% provided in the 2015-17 contract.
ISD 709 Child Nutrition Programs Pass Rigorous Federal/State Audit
Food service programs at
Duluth East, Lakewood and Ordean East passed a rigorous Federal/State audit by
the Minnesota Food and Nutrition Department this winter. School district food
service programs are regularly audited and must pass to remain part of the USDA
food service program.
The audit reviewed many
areas including student applications; daily business procedures in the
kitchens, managers’ office and Child Nutrition Main office; HACCP compliance,
Health Department Reports; breakfast and lunch menu analysis (both nutritional
and financial), as well as the ISD 709 Wellness policy, sanitation, daily meal
counts, the monthly financial claim and special diets. The auditor was
complimentary of the systems in place to serve appetizing meals to students
within USDA/State regulations.
Student-Run Restaurant Food For Thought May Features
Enjoy delicious gourmet salads, sandwiches,
entrees and desserts at Duluth's student-run restaurant Food for Thought,
located at East High School, 301 North 40th Avenue East.
range from $7 to $14 and are prepared and served by Denfeld and Duluth East
culinary arts students under the supervision of Chef Glenn D'Amour, CEC and
Michael Emerson, front of house.
Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 12Noon to 1:00PM.
are required: reserve and preorder 24 hours in advance by calling 218-336-8975
ext. 4055 or 218-336-8845 ext. 4055.
a full menu go to www.ISD709.org, choose the Duluth East website and click the
link at the top of the page.
6, 7, 8: French Herb Crusted Rack of Pork for $11.00
13, 14, 15: Beef Wellington for $14.00
28, 29: Classic Prime Rib Roast for $13.00
Weekly features are served with choice of soup or salad, homemade
focaccia bread and choice of beverage.
--Camille Murphy, MA, RN, was selected as a
nominee for the 2014 CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Award. This
annual award recognizes local immunization champions for their outstanding work
in the area of childhood immunization. Camille has been a school nurse with ISD
709 for 14 years. She provides immunization information to families and has
dedicated significant time working with other school nurses to update the
immunization policy for the school district.
ISD 709 Area Learning Center has been recognized by the MN Association of
Alternative Programs as its featured school for May 2014.
Joe Schingen and the entire Duluth ALC staff was nominated for Teacher
and Staff of the Year and recognized at the State conference.
--The Northland Foundation's KIDS PLUS Youth
in Philanthropy Board has approved a grant for $995 to Woodland Hills Academy -
ISD #709 for the Real-World Science project.
from Ordean East Middle School took part in the 2014 History Day Competition at
the University of Minnesota Campus. Thirteen History Day scholars presented
exemplary revised projects - Cami Fischer, Karin
Berdahl, Shelby Johnson, Elisabeth Walker, Alison Lee, Peyton Vogt, Emily
Carver, Olivia Rawylk, Maggie Geidner, Grace Hollander, Abbigail Hagen, Anika
Lakhan, and Emma Anderson. Three entries
received Honorable Mention Medals as part of the final round of competition for
Cami Fischer, Junior Individual
Exhibit: "They Moo When Something
Shelby Johnson and
Elisabeth Walker, Junior Group Exhibit: "The Holocaust"
Vogt, Junior Individual Website:
"John Peter Zenger: Rights to Freedom of the Press"
Duluth School Board Honors Duluth
Aviation Institute for STEM Program
During their regular April meeting, Duluth School Board members
took time to recognize the Duluth Aviation Institute for its support of STEM
(Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) education through its Path to Aviation
program. Founder Sandra Ettestad and Institute Aviation Instructor Marcel
LaFond accepted the award on behalf of the Institute.
In collaboration with area school districts, the Duluth Aviation Institute
provides in-class STEM education for sixth graders. The Path to Aviation
lessons provide an opportunity for students to have a real-world educational
experience designed to inspire interest in science, technology, engineering and
math. The top 15% of students who excel in the program are rewarded with a
Young Eagles Flight from the Sky Harbor Airport.
Congratulations 2014 Goldfine Gold
Star Teacher Award Nominees
Manley and Lillian Goldfine established the $5,000 award in 2006
in their belief that great teachers lay the foundation for the future success
of their students in further education, productive careers and well-rounded
enjoyment of life. This year the award will go to a secondary school teacher;
last year it went to an elementary school teacher.
Ginger Backus, Ordean East Middle
Cindy Grindy, Duluth East High School
Jane Ness, Residential/Day Treatment
Matthew "Phil" Rannila,
Denfeld High School
Karla Winterfeld, Lincoln Park Middle
Peg Zahorik, Area Learning
Center/Unity High School
Nominees will be honored and the final Award recipient announced
at a special ceremony May 14, 2014. Teachers are nominated and selected for the award
through a competitive application process based on several criteria, including
impact in the classroom, school and community, and their efforts to pursue
Annual Plant (and Maple Syrup)
Sale! Mark your calendars!
When: Wednesday, May 14, 9:00AM - 4:30PM
Where: East High School Greenhouse, 301 North 40th Avenue
We have beautiful geraniums, vegetables, herbs and many
flowering annuals this year.
NEW PRODUCT: Maple Syrup! Two awesome Forestry, Fish and Wildlife
students, David Rowe and Nick Feldhake, have been tapping our maple trees in
the East School Forest! They will be selling pints of syrup at the sale for
Please come to our sale and support our FFA and fabulous
For More Information: Jennifer Madole, 218-336-8845 ext. 4039
Myers-Wilkins and Lowell Elementary
All Aboard The Peace Train!
May 1 at 10:00AM and 6:00PM & May 2 at 12:45PM and 6:00PM
in the Myers-Wilkins Gymnasium, 1027 N. 8th Avenue East
With gratitude, we acknowledge the
generosity of organizations that support our programs: City of Duluth Parks and
Recreation, CDBG-Community Development Block Grant, College of St. Scholastica,
Duluth Youth Agency Council (DYAC), Essentia Corporate Contributions, ISD#709’s
Office of Educational Equity, Lloyd K. Johnson Foundation, Kiwanis Club of
Friendly Duluth, Minnesota Literacy Council (VISTAs), Minnesota Power Foundation,
MDE 21st Century Community Learning Centers, Northland Foundation, Ordean
Foundation, Pohlad Foundation, United Way of Greater Duluth,YMCA, Youth of
Duluth, YWCA, and individual donors.
From the City of Duluth:
--Champions Building Champions
At the Duluth Heritage Sports Center, 120 S. 30th
Play sports activities on the Turf! Free Opportunity for Youth Age
7 – 17
Activities are facilitated by collegiate athletes who focus on
building constructive relationships
With the youth involved while teaching the basics of sports and
Spring Schedule: Thursdays 4PM – 6PM,
April 17 – May 22
Summer Schedule: Thursdays 3PM – 5PM,
June 19 – August 21
For information: James at 727-1939, Sponsored by Men As Peacemakers
--ULTIMATE (frisbee) for KIDS!
This is an opportunity for youth ages 10-15 to learn the game of
Ultimate and play games run by parent volunteers on the indoor turf at the
Duluth Heritage Sports Center. Participants will have opportunities to learn
the basics, practice new skills and play informal pick-up games with others.
Skill development and practice
Wednesdays, May 7, 21, 28, 7-8pm (no
session May 14)
Sundays, May 11, 18, 25 and June 1,
For more information, please call 723-4322.
--The Denfeld Nordic Ski Teams were honored for academic
excellence! The Denfeld Girls Nordic Ski Team earned the Gold Award for an
average combined GPA of 3.83 and the Boys Nordic Ski team earned the Silver
Award with an average combined GPA of 3.71.
-- Cheryl Lien, Duluth East, has been selected Assistant
Principal of the Year by the Minnesota Association of Secondary School
Principals, NE Division.
-- Bea Kehr, ISD 709 Driver Education Instructor, received the
Matt Berry Award of Excellence from the Minnesota Driver and Traffic Safety
Association. The award recognizes outstanding contributions to traffic
safety education.. Bea received the award at the organization’s annual
conference for her leadership in the field and her ongoing dedication to
helping Duluth teens become safe drivers.
--Piedmont teacher Elizabeth Kersting-Peterson received
recognition at the Go Boldly Expo for her accomplishments in inspiring
students in the area of science. The event, held in St. Paul, featured
astronauts Dr. Buzz Aldrin, Dr. Jack Schmitt, and Dr. Karen Nyberg.
--Duluth East High School Teacher Jon Flaa is the recipient of
a 2013-14 Star of Innovation Award from the Minnesota Association of Secondary
School Principals. He received the award for his “Prescription for Success”
program, which offers an opportunity for students who are falling behind in
coursework or who need extra help to get back on track.
--Ordean East students Danielle Likar, Olivia Pawlyk, Rebecca
Miles and Katie Carlson created a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math)
project around improving school safety and have been selected as an
eCYBERMISSION Regional Finalist. If selected as a National Finalist, each
team member will receive a $2,000 US Savings Bond and an all-expenses paid trip
to Washington DC.
--Students from Piedmont Elementary have advanced to the MN
Student Inventors Congress State event to be held in May at the Minneapolis
Convention Center. As part of the 57th annual Invention Expo, which is the
oldest annual, continuous running, invention convention in the world, they will
show off their inventions among other students from Minnesota and hundreds of
adult inventors from across the country.
--The Piedmont Elementary PTA
received the Diamond Award at the Annual Minnesota PTA convention for a 164%
increase in membership for 2013-2014. The Homecroft PTA also received this
award with an increase of 135% in membership. The
award recognizes the increasing support and investment from parents and
teachers in our schools who volunteer their time to enhance our children’s
educational experience and community connectedness.
View Denfeld High
School’s 2014 Lipdub Video “Good Time,”
organized and produced
by Denfeld students
Lincoln Park Middle
School is proud to announce its Ziigwaan
Niimi'iding Spring Powwow.
Please join us for miijiim (food), nagamowin (singing),
Aaniin api (When): Friday April
25, 5:00PM - 8:00PM
Aaniin di (Where): Lincoln
Middle School, 3215 W. 3rd Street
Onaagoshi-wiisiniwin (Dinner): 5:00PM –
Round Dance: starts at 5:30PM, and Grand Entry is at
Free and Open to the
Public - Please help spread
information: Diana Anstett , Integration Specialist
Office of American Indian Education
Brought to you by:
Duluth Public Schools - American Indian Education, Office of Education
Spring Play: “These Shining Lives”
Melanie Marnich, graduate of Morgan Park High School
May 1 – 3
at 8:00PM in the Denfeld Auditorium
44th Avenue East
Tickets: $7 Adults, $5 Students &
chronicles the true story of The Radium Girls, four women who contracted
radiation poisoning from painting watch dials with glow-in-the-dark paint at a
watch factory in the 1920’s. The women were told the paint was
harmless; they later challenged their employer in a legal case that established
the right of workers who contract occupational diseases to sue their
Healthy Wildcat Night
at Lincoln Park Middle School
Students and their friends and families are gathering for Healthy Wildcat
Family Night, to be held on Thursday, April 24th, from 5:00PM to
7:30PM. Guests will be invited to join student lead, fun
activities and a healthy fair. There will be a FREE dinner including healthy
selections for the entire family. Family nights are always filled
with fun and it is a great opportunity to see the school and meet student
leaders and staff. Please RSVP the number of people attending to
our AmeriCorps office at 218-336-8880 x3340.
is hosting ‘College Affordability Resource Nights’ at schools around the state
so parents and students can:
· Learn how to save and
pay for college from local college financial aid experts
· Get information on how
to apply for federal financial aid and fill out the FAFSA
· Hear what is going on
at the federal level regarding college affordability
meetings will be led by Senator Franken’s Minnesota Education Advisor, Dan
Solomon. The Senator will use input from these meetings to help prepare for
ongoing debate on the critical issue of college affordability.
Meetings are free and open to the public.
Monday, April 28 from
School (Meet in the Media Center)
401 North 44th Avenue
West, Duluth, MN 55807
RSVP’s not required but
appreciated at email@example.com .
For questions, or directions, please contact the office at (651)
graduates Joe Hodapp and Alex Van Lo are among students from Saint Benedict and
St. John’s University who will be inducted into The Theta of Minnesota Chapter
of Phi Beta Kappa.
-- The Duluth East Nordic Ski Teams earned honors for
academic excellence! The Duluth East Boys Nordic Ski team
earned the Gold Award and the Girls Nordic Ski team earned the Silver Award from
the Minnesota State High School Coaches Association. The Boys and Girls teams
both advance to State where the Boys took 3rd place.
Students from Stowe Elementary and Laura MacArthur Elementary created Empty
Bowl necklaces out of clay to help raise money for the Northern Lakes Food
Bank. Laura MacArthur students raised over $1,000 and Stowe
students over $600.
Several students from Ordean East Middle School won awards at the Minnesota
State Science Fair held recently in Bloomington: Olivia
Nelson/Special Award from NOAA; Zarar Hayee/2nd Year Award; Josie Peterson/2nd
Year Award, Grand Award and Middle School Paper Award; Haylee Mizia-Larue - 2
Special Awards and Grand Award; Kianna Donnellan- 2nd Year Award,
Grand Award and Middle School Paper Award.
students from Denfeld and Duluth East High Schools received recognition at the
SkillsUSA Championships, held in Bloomington, MN. The
conference is a showcase where more than 800 outstanding career and technical
education students competed in 80 hands-on trade, technical and leadership
contests. Congratulations to Nicholas Chambers (Denfeld) Safety and Sean
Lindblad (East) Job Skill Demonstration A.