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Principals talk about student achievement

Superintendent Chris Lindholm told Pequot Lakes School Board members Monday, Nov. 18, that the district’s three principals are working with leadership teams at each school to improve student achievement.

He cited three areas: core instruction; systems of intervention and enrichment for students who need more help and for students who need more challenges; and school climate.

Each principal shared current information as well as future goals.

Eagle View Elementary School Principal Dave Endicott said this is a work in progress, and he’s finding ways to engage staff in the process. He shared target strategies and goals from last year, noting successes and where improvement is needed.

Endicott wants Eagle View to be a Reward School, in the top 10 percent in the state. That’s achievable in the next two to four years, he said.

Middle School Principal Sue Sergent also shared last year and current year goals, noting where improvements are needed and how to do that.

High School Principal Chip Rankin said Pequot Lakes students scored above average in all MCA categories for the first time.

Lindholm asked how the board could support the principals as leaders at their schools.

“Celebrate with us and help us not be satisfied with where we’re at,” Endicott said, “and trust that we are doing the best we can for our kids and that we believe firmly in what we’re doing for kids.”

Rankin wants to ensure every student is ready for college, saying those who don’t graduate can no longer just go out and find a job because those jobs aren’t there anymore.

Schools can no longer turn out students who barely graduate, Rankin said, noting in his four years with the district he knows 51 students who didn’t graduate. Those students must be reached, and they must leave high school with post-secondary plans to be successful in today’s world, Rankin said.

Student council

Student Council member Henry Liedl talked about the council’s plans to have a student lounge in the commons area outside the former high school gym.

“The goal is to create an area for students to hang out when they don’t have much homework,” Liedl said.

An estimated $1,500 cost is a challenge, as well as determining how to manage the area, which is proposed to have a ping pong or Foosball table.

Liedl also reported there will be a blood drive from 1-7 p.m. Dec. 12, possibly in the former high school gym, though a location is still being finalized.

Winter Ball will be Jan. 11 at the Pine Peaks Event Center in Crosslake.

Liedl said the student council also is talking about what to do with the memorial boards in one of the high school hallways.

Upcoming meetings

Nov. 25: board work session, 6 p.m.

Dec. 9: Personnel Committee, 4:30 p.m.; Project Oversight Committee, 5:30 p.m.; Policy Committee, 6:30 p.m.

Dec. 16: regular board meeting, 7 p.m.

In other business Monday, the board:

• Approved construction bond disbursements for $1,222,520.

• Agreed to provide an advertising opportunity to five companies that donated time and/or materials to the baseball and softball dugouts project.