Teacher is now semifinalist [UPDATED]Published 9:27am Wednesday, February 20, 2013 Updated 11:32am Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Congratulations to … Marsha Talley, high school mathematics teacher, for being selected as a semifinalist for the 2013 Teacher of the Year program sponsored by Education Minnesota! This is a great honor for Talley and the Fergus Falls Public Schools.
And congratulations to Fergus Falls High School senior, Austin Sandmeyer for being selected as one of 250 finalist in the 2012-13 Coca-Cola Scholars program. Austin is assured of a $10,000 scholarship and that amount could rise to $20,000 depending on a personal interview in Atlanta this coming April.
Fuel Up to Play 60
Kennedy Secondary School was awarded a visit from a Minnesota Vikings player as a result of the NFL’s Fuel Up to Play 60 Oatmeal Super Bowl Challenge submission by student Kayla Hexum.
Ben Leber, a Minnesota Vikings alumni player, will be making a 60-minute guest appearance at Kennedy Secondary School on Thursday, Feb. 21.
Mr. Leber will speak to the seventh-grade physical education class, as well as some students from Mrs. Enderson’s FACS class who participated in the Oatmeal Super Bowl Challenge.
He will also participate in physical activity as part of the physical education class that morning.
The School District made the area headlines for a few items this week. The Fargo newspapers and TV stations did stories on our Adaptive Bowling League and the possibility of having an independent provider agreement with a Clay Target League.
Following the School Board work session last Monday night, The Daily Journal ran a story on the possibility of our District offering an all-day, every-day kindergarten program at no cost to the parent.
The School Board is on the path of offering free kindergarten because they strongly feel it is a great educational option for students and families. The District would also continue to offer the current options of Monday, Wednesday, Friday kindergarten and every-day, half-day kindergarten.
In the half-day option, parents would provide transportation at midday. The District wants to be the number one choice for all the parents and students in Fergus Falls and we believe offering all-day, every-day kindergarten for free would be a great opportunity for both students and parents.
It is anticipated that over the summer months the District will address safety issues at the Adams and McKinley schools.
We are working with Scott DeMartelaere, Design-Intent Architecture, to redesign our entries so that all visitors must first check into the main office. This is one of the key issues of concern that our police department recommended.
And finally, we are seeking the bond referendum on our outdoor facilities. We are asking the taxpayers to support this much-needed facility upgrade. The project would concentrate on the Kennedy Secondary School.
Here are some additional frequently asked questions about the project…
• Why is the project reduced from the November 2012 bond referendum?
There are two reasons why the project is being reduced. The first is due to a state law requiring the amount of the bond referendum to be changed by at least 5 percent if a school district goes out to the voters within six months after an election.
The second reason was based on community input. The School Board heard the project was too large and complex. The project reduces the amount by 14 percent and concentrates just on Kennedy Secondary School.
• So what was removed from the original project and what is going to happen to Cleveland and Roosevelt?
Even though the Cleveland and Roosevelt projects are not on the April 2 bond referendum, the District is intending to improve these sites as future funds allow. The District would like to install an irrigation system on the west side of Cleveland to host soccer, and a grass infield and fencing at Roosevelt. The ice rink would remain at Cleveland.
• With the lower bond referendum amount, how does this affect my taxes?
The 1994 bond referendum for the science wing and media center at the former high school is expiring in 2013. Property owners in the Fergus Falls School District are currently paying $24.16 per year or $2.01 per month on a $100,000 property.
With the 1994 bond expiring and if this new bond referendum was approved, the cost for that same $100,000 property would be $17.69 per year or $1.47 per month.
Jerry Ness is the superintendent of the Fergus Falls Public Schools.