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ISD 709 News

posted Feb 24, 2015, 5:29 PM by Communications ISD 709

Duluth School Board Honors Renier for Accomplishments in Science

   During their regular February meeting, Duluth School Board members took time to honor and recognize Tim Renier, Duluth East HS, for his accomplishments in the area of science.  They include, but are not limited to:

--Finalist in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF): advancing to the Intel ISEF in Pittsburgh,


--1st Place Project: advancing to the MN State Science and Engineering Fair in Bloomington, MN

--1st Place Paper: advancing to the Northeast Region Junior Science and Humanities Symposium  in Bloomington, MN

--Genius Olympiad Award: Selected to submit a project for the Genius Olympiad International Competition in Oswego, NY

--U.S. Surgeon General’s Public Health Award

--Mu Alpha Theta Mathematics Honors Society Award

--ASU Walton Sustainability Award: for a project involving social justice, environmental and economic prosperity: nomination for a trip to Arizona for a Sustainability Solutions Festival

--Alpha Delta Community Involvement Award

   Tim is also a recipient of the Scholar of Distinction Award from the Minnesota Department of Education and the Minnesota Academic Excellence Foundation.  The award recognizes exceptional accomplishment, achievement and performance.  It is MDE's highest award and denotes that Tim has a substantial body of work in his content area, exceeded the requirements for graduation standards, engaged in a rigorous course of study and has completed an extraordinarily focused research project.


Former Denfeld Student Leaves $100,000 Donation to ISD 709

   Jerome Clarence Miller attended Denfeld in the 1940’s, and according to his family, he had a great interest in horticulture and carpentry.  When Mr. Miller passed away, he directed that $100,000 should be given to our school district.   In recognition of Mr. Miller’s interests, plans are being made to use the funds in some way to support ISD 709 Career and Tech Ed programs.  


State Releases Last Year’s 4-Year, On-Time Graduation Rates

   This week the Minnesota Department of Education released last year's 4-year, on-time graduation rates for Minnesota schools.   Results are available online for all high school programs in ISD 709 with a breakout for each school and each student group at

   According to ISD 709 officials, the district continues to see a trend of upward and downward movement in the on-time graduation rate over time.  Last year’s overall 4-year, on-time graduation rate was down slightly, in contrast to the upward movement seen in 2013. The 5-year graduation rate was up, the 6-year rate remained relatively stable.

   “We’d like to see more stability and steady increases,” said Ed Crawford, Assistant Superintendent for ISD 709. “We expect that will happen as our schools continue to focus on achievement and on implementation of interventions.  We’ll also carefully review what’s working and what’s not and make changes as necessary.”

   Last spring and fall, several interventions were put into place to support student achievement.  They include, but are not limited to:

--Restructuring the ISD 709 organization to the instruction and support of students

--Professional Learning Communities

--WIN Time for Students

--Aligning Curriculum with State Standards

--Instructional Coaches

--An updated teacher evaluation system

--Professional development for teachers and staff

--Strategies to reduce out-of-school suspensions


2014 4-Year, On-Time Graduation Rates:

All ISD 709 Students:  74.84

Duluth East:  91.52

Denfeld:  78.74

Area Learning Center (Alternative Programs):  14.63


Board Meeting Highlights Importance of School and Community Partnerships 

   The importance of school and community partnerships was highlighted during the February Education committee meeting.  Board members received information about the ISD 709 School and Community Partnership Manual, created through a two year grant from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, and some great work by the Myers-Wilkins Collaborative, United Way of Greater Duluth, Duluth LISC and Community Action Duluth. 


ISD 709 Career and Technical Education Programs Discussed at Committee Meeting

   Duluth school board members received an overview of ISD 709 Career and Technical Education programs this month.  Opportunities for students include, but are not limited to Business, Communications, Medical Careers, Construction Occupations, Vocational Agriculture, Automotive Technology, Technical Careers, and Industrial Arts.  In March, high school students will have an opportunity to attend Construct Tomorrow, an event that provides hands-on experiences related to the construction trades.


Food For Thought Student-Run Restaurant Opens March 3!

   Enjoy 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.  The restaurant opens for Spring semester on Tuesday March 3.

   Entrees range from $7 to $15 and are prepared and served by Denfeld and East Culinary Arts students under the supervision of Chef Glenn D'Amour, CEC.

--Open Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.  Please plan to arrive between 11:20AM - 11:30AM for seating.

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

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

--Upcoming Features (served with choice of soup or salad, homemade focaccia bread and choice of beverage.):

·         March 3, 4, 5:  Halibut Provencal En Papillote for $13

·         March 10, 11, 12:  Chicken Tetrazzini for $10

·         March 17, 18, 19: Tuscan Roast Leg of Lamb for $11

·         March 24, 25, 26: Duck Breast Ala Orange for $11