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School board discusses goals, Community Commons

During its Dec. 18 meeting, the New Richmond School District Board of Education discussed several topics, including the Community Commons and the list of goals the board has been working on. 

“We had a [Community Commons] Committee meeting on Dec. 11, and during that meeting we mostly reviewed the old business, and I also shared with them some of the decisions you (the board) had made at our last meeting,” New Richmond Superintendent Jeff Moberg said. “The building has been amended in so many small ways that you end up with a conglomeration and, even though it has served a good purpose, right now we are trying to unravel it a little bit. We want to try to find another good use for the space and if there is not one there, or it can’t be afforded, then you have to look at other alternatives.”

Moberg also mentioned the creation of a pair of subgroups the committee hopes to put together, such as a group to help define and understand what the Community Commons operational budget is. He also expressed the desire for the board to continue to support the Community Commons staying in existence whether the school district or another entity owns the building. 

The Cuningham Group’s walkthrough of the 1926 portion of the Community Commons was also discussed at the meeting.

After its update on the Community Commons Committee from Moberg, the board discussed updating the School Board Core Values and Goals. At the last work session meeting, the board went through the list of goals and discussed what updates it would like to make. Members then had Moberg take the list to the administration team to be vetted.

“The group had a few suggestions for some tweaking of the core purpose a little bit,” Moberg said. “Their suggestion was to change it to ‘ensure every student achieve to his or her potential.’ The reason they liked ensure over the original inspire was that it is really our job to make sure every kid learns. And that can be tough to do, but at the end of the day that is what it is.”

The board also heard a presentation from the Tiger Quest K-8 Enrichment program, including three students who take part in the group. After a short presentation, the students told board members what it was they liked the most about Tiger Quest and which events they take part in. The program offers a variety of groups and events for students in kindergarten through eighth grade throughout the year, such as Tiger Crew, Math Masters and Battle of the Books.

<B>Other business:<B>

-- The board approved the hiring of four employees as well as five donations from various groups totaling more than $8,200.

-- The board approved the resignation of high school special services teacher Zac Eichten and decided to impose the usual penalty for exiting his contract with the school mid-year.

-- The board approved an added 16 hours of weekly paraprofessional time to help with students working at the Community Commons.

-- The board accepted the 2012-13 District Financial Audit Report.

The board then held a closed session discussion of pending litigation and personnel matters. According to Moberg, there was no action taken after the board reconvened to the open session.

The next school board meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Jan. 20.

Jordan Willi
Jordan Willi is a reporter for the New Richmond News. Previously, he worked as a sports reporter at the Worthington Daily Globe in Worthington, Minnesota. He also interned at the Hudson Star Observer for two summers and contributed to the Bison Illustrated sports magazine at North Dakota State University.
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