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HomeNewsEducationLake Superior School District 381 Meeting - November 29, 2022

Lake Superior School District 381 Meeting – November 29, 2022

Tanner Spawn, Business Manager for the Lake Superior District, was on hand at the November 29th school board meeting to give board members an overview of and an opportunity to discuss the budget and levy plan for fiscal year 2023 – 24. The State’s share of education funding increases gradually, year over year, but has actually stayed pretty flat over the past few years, according to Spawn. The levy accounts for about 21% of district revenue. Because the Lake Superior School District is within the Taconite Tax Relief Area, the local mining industry pays a portion of the district’s yearly budget, offsetting the amount that taxpayers contribute. The Board voted to adopt the 2022 – 23 Levy Certification in the amount of $4,856,425.60.

With Covid complications and the current inflationary environment, school districts around the state have been working hard to respond to the increased educational and emotional needs of students, all while having to operate on tighter budgets. As a former teacher of 38 years, this writer has been impressed by the staff and administration of the district. Though student achievement has taken a hit in reading, math and science over the last couple of years, largely due to Covid 19, the District continues to maintain a graduation rate of 94.2%, significantly above the state average. Having a dedicated staff and a supportive community has served the district and its students well in these challenging times and will continue to do so.

There is always a focus on curriculum development in school districts. Staff and administration in the Lake Superior District are working to improve student literacy skills across the curriculum in all content areas. In addition, Curriculum Director Dan Johnson is working on a sustainable curriculum cycle to ensure that students and teachers have access to curriculum that is updated and rigorous.

The Board was introduced to two teachers who are new to the district. Lee Costley will be serving as a Special Education teacher. Costley grew up in Two Harbors and is excited to be back in the community and teaching at THHS. In addition to his teaching, he works with USA Hockey and has been involved in both the Olympic and National hockey teams. Max Kelley, a recent UMD graduate, is the new Band Director at THHS. He said that he is appreciative of the support he has received from the district and the community. Kelley has a passion for both Pep and Marching Bands and will be working to develop those aspects of the music program.

Readers should know that there are a number of holiday programs coming up at area schools in the next few weeks. On Wednesday, December 7th, William Kelley Elementary held their K – 5 Holiday program at 2:00 PM. Band and Choir concerts will be held at Two Harbors High School on December 12th at 7:00 PM for the high school music program, and on December 19th at 7:00 PM for middle school program. The William Kelley Winter Wonderband concert will also be held on December 19th at 7:00 PM.

Tom Burns, who will be stepping down from the school board, was celebrated for his eleven years of service to the district. Burns received a commendation and was lauded for his advocacy for students, mentorship of other school board members and for his great sense of humor. His presence on the board will be missed. Additionally, Mark Broin took the oath of office as a new member of the board. He will be a welcome addition to the board.

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