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The Sleepy Eye Herald Dispatch - Sleepy Eye, MN
  • School district approves new STEM program, will provide hands-on training

  • The District 84 Board of Education met on Nov. 14 where it discussed a new hands on initiative for students starting in December among other items.
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  • The District 84 Board of Education met on Nov. 14 where it discussed a new hands on initiative for students starting in December among other items.
     
    Good news items of the meeting included the well attended elementary music concert, as well as the St. Mary’s football team competing in the Metrodome.
     
    Board Member Bryan Sellner presented details of the STEM program (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) which will begin next month. Sellner said various individuals at four 3M plants in New Ulm, Hutchinson, Alexandria, and Fairmont, are working with the Sleepy Eye School District to help with the new program.
     
    “The purpose of the program is to bring a ground level hands on training to the students in the class to spark their interest in science, engineering and technology,” Sellner said.
     
    Sellner mentioned there will be 10 machine-like trainers that will be placed in Sleepy Eye Public classrooms for students to learn with. Sellner said he is excited about the program because it will help students with real life situations learning how to work with machines. He also said the program will help bridge the gap between the students and the community. Sellner reassured there is no school cost for the program.
     
    Board reports include Casey Coulson, who attended a negotiations meeting. Coulson said the negotiations committee and the Sleepy Eye teacher’s union are pretty far apart as far as a compromise. Teachers are seeking an 11.4 percent increase while the union is at 5.8. If the union was to agree to the 11.4, it would cost the school another $300,000, according to Superintendent John Cselovszki.
     
    It was reported by Board Member Sheila Wurtzberger that at a facilities meeting, they discussed fixing up the girls locker room, and possibly replacing the bleachers. Principal Laffen mentioned the anti-bully program turned out well, and said there will be someone from the State Patrol coming to the school to talk to students about distracted driving. Finally, Cselovszki and Sheila Schmid overviewed the new mission statement the public school is proposing.
     
    Action items that were approved were:
    • Resignations of Bradd Goede as head tennis Coach, Randy Netzke as assistant wrestling Coach;
    • LPN agreement with Tina Cunningham to serve as a special education student according to IEP;
    • Dan Nelson as JH boys basketball Coach, Karlie Kahlmeier as JH girls basketball Coach, Maria Longoria as special education paraprofessional, Alyssa Stevensen as Musical Technical Director;
    • Accept following donations: anonymous donation of $1,064.81: half to second grade and half to fourth grade, donation from the Lions Club for the “Yes” program for $500 and another $1,000 for the Biz Town program for SEPS and St. Mary’s, and an anonymous donation of $500 to benefit the Elementary Library for purchase of books as specified.
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