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ISD 709 News

posted Feb 11, 2014, 10:34 AM by Communications ISD 709   [ updated Feb 12, 2014, 6:46 AM ]

Last Week for Think Kids! Your ideas matter – share them through a Think Kids meeting or through the Online Survey at through February 14.

If you can’t make a meeting in your school or neighborhood, feel free to attend one at another location.

Tuesday February 11:

11:30AM – 12:15PM Evergreen Senior Center, 5830 Grand Avenue

Wednesday February 12:

11:30AM – 12:15 PM Portman Community Center, 4601 McCulloch Street

4:00PM – 5:30PM Homecroft Elementary School, 4784 Howard Gnesen Road

6:30PM - 8:00PM Lowell Elementary School, 2000 Rice Lake Road

Thursday February 13:

4:00PM – 5:30PM East High School, 301 North 40th Avenue East

6:30PM – 8:00PM Lakewood Elementary School, 5207 North Tischer Road

For discussion:

FY 2015 Budget Planning: With increased support from the state and passage of the 2013 Education Levy, funds are being earmarked to support lowering class size, raising student achievement, and curriculum updates. Using resources wisely must continue to be a priority and the district is looking for ways to be efficient and effective and to realize non-classroom savings.

Reducing class size, balancing elementary enrollment: Enrollment at most ISD 709 elementary schools is at capacity. A few schools are below capacity. Based on projected enrollment trends, in 2-3 years several elementary schools could potentially reach over-capacity and impact the ability to balance class size. Taking steps to balance enrollment at each elementary school could help. Such steps could include adjusting attendance areas, reviewing the transfer policy, providing incentives for families to attend under-capacity schools, capping enrollment, or other strategies.


ISD 709 Receives $10,000 from Kwik Trip to Support Digital Fabrication Labs

   Kwik Trip District Leader Layne Froehlich and CFO Scott Teigen presented the donation to Superintendent Bill Gronseth and School Board Chairperson Mike Miernicki at the Duluth Chamber of Commerce offices.

   The donation will be used to help fund digital fabrication laboratories, also known as “fab labs.” ISD 709 is in a two-year process to establish the fab labs in Denfeld and Duluth East High Schools. These labs are being adopted by schools as platforms for project-based, hands-on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education. Plans are underway to install equipment and begin training by September 2014. High school students and community members would begin accessing the fab labs by September of 2015.


Congratulations to East High School Junior Tim Renier. His science fair project, Sick of Getting Sick is headed to the International Science Fair! Tim received several awards at the 2014 Northeast Minnesota Regional Science Fair at UMD:

· American Psychological Association Award: Top project in behavioral and social sciences

· 1st place project: Advancing to Minnesota State Science and Engineering Fair (MSSEF): March 31- April 1, Bloomington, MN

· 1st place paper: Advancing to state Junior Science and Humanities Symposium (JSHS) : March 29-30th, Bloomington, MN

· Genius Olympiad Award: Selected to submit project for the Genius Olympiad International Competition in Oswego, NY: June 15-20

· Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF): Project advances to the Intel ISEF in Los Angeles, CA: May 11-16


From Elise Kuutti:

Duluth East Daredevils Robotics Open House
On Thursday, February 13, from 6:00PM – 8:00PM, Duluth East High School will host the annual Daredevil Robotics Open House in the school’s Library/Media Center, 301 North 40th Avenue East. The event will begin with an overview of this year's game, Aerial Assist, presented by Daredevil team members, and afterwards they will have past robots on display. At approximately 6:45PM – 7:15PM they will unveil and demonstrate this year’s new robot in the mezzanine.

Student-Run Restaurant Food For Thought Opens March 4

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.

Entrees 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.

--Open Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 12Noon to 1:00PM beginning March 4.

--Reservations are required: reserve and preorder 24 hours in advance by calling 218-336-8975 ext. 4055 or 218-336-8845 ext. 4055.

--For a full menu go to, choose the Duluth East website and click the link at the top of the page.

--Upcoming Features:

March 4, 5, 6: BBQ Baby Back Style Ribs for $10.00

March 11, 12, 13: Old Fashioned Chicken & Dumplings for $10.00

March 18, 19, 20: Tuscan Roast Leg of Lamb for $11.00

March 25, 26, 27: French Herb Crusted Rack of Pork for $11.00

April 1, 2, 3: Beef Wellington for $14.00

Weekly features are served with choice of soup or salad, homemade focaccia bread and choice of beverage.


Staff Development Activities

Secondary Teachers and several Early Childhood Teachers met at Duluth East High School to gain knowledge and skills pertaining to the collaborative construction of Common Assessments in all Content Areas. Presenters for the day were UMD Faculty Dr. Julia Williams and Erin Peplnjak. Specific Content Area work was facilitated by District Content Coaches and Secondary Principals.

Special Services Staff met at Denfeld to collaboratively work on rubrics related to their evaluation processes and/or on specific curriculum work. Their activities were coordinated by Laura Fredrickson and Jason Crane.



--Madeleine Monson Geerts, Duluth East High School, was chosen as the 2014 Duluth Youth Orchestra Hester Scholarship Winner. Madeleine is a cellist in East’s Symphony Orchestra.

-- Becca Jago, Bailey Manisto, MacKenzie Tucker, and Livia Redenbaugh, Denfeld High School, had their work selected for an art show at UW-Superior. The show features K-12 student creations and will be on display through March 6th in the Krook Gallery on the UWS campus.

--Students from Duluth East High School are on their way to State with their One Act Play "My Client Curley!" Maddison Nachtsheim, Taylor Vezina, Marianne Peterson, Eric Sampson, Thomas Landgren, Noah Cornwell, Kier Zimmerman, Jenna Pitoscia, Graham Godfrey, Paul Manning, Zane Biles, Meghan Jarecki, Calise DeRoche, Sanna Berdahl and Barry Toland placed first at the Sub-section 7AA One Act Play Contest at St. Francis. They will participate in the State One Act Play Festival, Thursday, February 13 at The O'Shaughnessey in St. Paul, located on the campus of St. Catherine University.