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Park Rapids School to add fifth kindergarten section

Park Rapids School's stable enrollment is calling for a fifth kindergarten class again this fall, the board approving advertising for an additional teacher.

Century assistant principal Jeff Johnson reported since kindergarten round-up, numbers are at 124 students, with an additional six or seven students a possibility.

At four sections, there would be 31 per class, with five sections, 25 students.

Superintendent Glenn Chiodo concurred. "I think Jeff's right," he told the board. "The numbers are higher than a year ago when we added a section."

The board approved continuing with five sections of kindergarten as well as replacing 1.5 Title I teacher positions, following the resignation of Mitch Peterson and part-time teacher Kathy Peterson. These positions are for a year only, funded by stimulus money.

The board will advertise for a first grade teacher, Mary Frahm retiring this year. Initially, a kindergarten teacher was to have moved into the position.

The district will also advertise for a speech-language pathologist, following the resignation of Tabitha Petrowski.

In other action, the board:

n Approved teacher tenure for Jeremy Anderson, Tom Coborn, Patrick Deegan, Robert Kapsner, Jamie Katzenmeyer, Jared Larson, Dawn Leeseberg, Aaron Morris, Kathy Peterson and Jack Williams.

n Approved a bid of $43,350 from Lance Edelman to purchase the student built house.

"We're not making much, but we're breaking even," high school principal Al Judson reported.

n Learned the school year ended with three less students than September's numbers, 1,541 at the beginning of the school year, 1,538 at the conclusion.

"This is the first time I've seen this kind of consistency, start to end," Chiodo commented.

n Approved the resignations of speech coach Deb Davis, assistant gymnastics coaches Aarin Galzki and Brianne Morris and JV girls basketball coach Christina Ridlon.

n Awarded bids for the asbestos abatement project in the high school to the Asbestos Control and Consulting Team, Cloquet, $41,010, and MacNeil Environmental Services, $15,600.

n Recognized contributions from the PTA, which include funding and assisting with field trips and other activities, putting together the elementary yearbook, purchasing supplies and collecting pop tops.

"It's awesome what the PTA does for the district," school board chair Sherry Safratowich commented.

n Will convene a special meeting at 6 p.m. Monday, June 14 in the media center to award bids for high school improvements.

n Set a school board goal setting session for 5:30 p.m. July 19.