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Menahga School forming new teacher, parent groups

One is a teacher advisory group, the other an elementary school parent advisory committee.

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Menahga School
Shannon Geisen / Park Rapids Enterprise
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Menahga School’s new administration is setting up new committees for greater parent or teacher involvement. They were announced at a Sept. 12 work session.

Superintendent Jay Kjos is forming an advisory committee with teacher leaders and all administration. It would meet monthly to discuss teachers’ needs, desires and wants at the district.

“The purpose of this is to create a culture of trust,” he said.

Kjos said there would be a formal selection process, with a two-year term limit. “There’s going to be certain expectations,” he continued, like attending all meetings and maintaining confidentiality. “In order to ensure open dialogue, we have to follow that.”

Kjos spoke with the teacher union representative, who expressed excitement about the idea.

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“A lot of the staff I talked to are really excited to have a table to bring concerns, and we’re going to listen. … If we can fix it and it’s something we can do right, we’re going to do it,” he said.

Committee members would not receive compensation, Kjos explained. Meetings will be held after school and they will report to the school board.

Elementary Principal Margaux Hylla is establishing a parent advisory committee (PAC).

Interest is high, she said. “The feedback I’m getting is that the community would like something initiated by the school.”

Kjos explained that the PAC would be an outside entity. “We wouldn’t hold any funds for a group like that. It’d be like a booster club.”

At this point, Hylla said the PAC would not have a fundraising element. She simply would like to get parents involved.

Board chair Andrea Haverinen said it could evolve into an educational foundation in the future. “I’m all for getting more people involved, always,” she said.

Hylla will send a letter of interest.

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Shannon Geisen is editor of the Park Rapids Enterprise.
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