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School looks to partner with business

By Jean Ruzickajruzicka@parkrapidsenterprise.com The Park Rapids community is invited to attend a "stakeholders" luncheon Friday, a school-business symposium to "further advance the partnership between the business and education communities," exp...

By Jean Ruzicka
jruzicka@parkrapidsenterprise.com

The Park Rapids community is invited to attend a “stakeholders” luncheon Friday, a school-business symposium to “further advance the partnership between the business and education communities,” explained David Collins, of the Hubbard County Regional Economic Development Commission, the host of the event.
The seminar, featuring comments from Park Rapids Area School administrators, will be held from noon to 1:30 p.m. Feb. 13 in the Century School cafetorium.
“We will share what we’re doing and how we hope to further engage the business community in the future, to make it beneficial for the students and community as whole,” superintendent Lance Bagstad explained.
“I’m passionate about this,” he said of the initiative. The difficulty, he admits, will be paring descriptions of the school district’s aspirations and the subsequent listening session to 90 minutes.
“We want to build upon what we’re doing to make a better future for the kids,” Bagstad said of college or workforce career readiness. “We want to ensure that when these kids leave, they will have the skills, the credits… And that doesn’t just begin in high school.”
“We want students to be aware of local opportunities and skills they need to acquire,” Collins said of PRAHS students obtaining jobs locally. “We will continue to look for ways to build a partnership. This is something between the business community and the school that we hope to do more often.”
Among the topics to be discussed are:
n The state of the district
n Preschool and kindergarten readiness
n Reading well by third grade
n Closing the achievement gap
n The Alternative Learning Center
n Technology integration
n College and career readiness
n Developing business and civic partnerships
n And “other exciting initiatives.”
“The only thing we know about the future is that it will be different,” said Bagstad, quoting Peter Drucker.
“We want to engage the business community with what the school is doing, to work together to make it beneficial for the students and community as a whole,” Bagstad said. “These are exciting times.”
Lunch is $10 per person, with reservations requested by noon Thursday, Feb. 12 by calling 732-2259 or emailing shalilee@hubbard countyedc.com
Speakers will include Bagstad, high school principal Jeff Johnson, Century principal Joleen DeLaHunt, high school assistant principal John Schumacher, Century assistant principal Shawn Andress and Community Education director Jill Dickinson.

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