In its Monday, Oct. 19, meeting, the Pequot Lakes School Board unanimously agreed to add Walker-Hackensack-Akeley to the Northern Lakes girls’ hockey co-op, but just for this year.
To do this, the board first had to vote to dissolve the current co-op of Pequot Lakes, Crosby-Ironton and Pine River-Backus before voting to approve a new co-op of those three schools along with Walker-Hackensack-Akeley.
W-H-A was only seeking a one-year co-op agreement for its small number of hockey players. After this season, it hopes to join a co-op with more nearby schools like Park Rapids.
“They have a couple of players that need a place to play for one year,” Superintendent Chris Lindholm said. “This is a one-year Band-Aid for them and for us, because our numbers are low and we could use those two players for a year before our younger grades with more numbers work their way up in the program.”
The board will have to take similar actions next year to allow W-H-A to leave the co-op.
The board also agreed to suspend its remodeling project of the new STEM campus, which was formerly the Echo Journal building, for the remainder of the 2020-21 school year. This action was done due to a loss in school funds stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic.
In other action Monday, the board:
Approved a hold harmless in an effort to stabilize funding for the fiscal year after seeing enrollment figures 60 students below projections, likely due to COVID-19.
“School districts statewide have lost significant enrollment due to COVID and strongly feel like enrollment will be back,” Lindholm said, “But for one year, there will be a big hit to revenue.”
Approved an “E-Learning Plan” that can be used to offer remote learning opportunities when the school must be closed due to inclement weather.
Approved a contract agreement between the district and noncertified employees effective July 1, 2020, through June 30, 2022.
Accepted four donations. Three are grants for various programs, and the fourth donation is a “large quantity” of school supplies for students in need.
Approved the resignation of assistant trap coach Chad Nelson.
Hired paraprofessionals Caleb Burggraff and Ashley Wendt.
Approved extended leaves for van driver Karen Johnson, paraprofessional Doris Young, speech pathologist Teri Kaminski-Peterson, van driver Lori Larson and teacher Ali Ross.
The board will conduct a special meeting at 6 p.m. Monday, Nov. 9, to canvass election results, with its regular work session to immediately follow. Interim member Brandon Andersen will join the board at that time.
Dan Determan may be reached at 218-855-5879 or email@example.com. Follow him on Facebook and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/@PEJ_Dan.