your schools, your community summer 2014
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DESCRIPTIONThe print newsletter of Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191 brings you student and staff success stories, partnership information, and district news on a quarterly basis.
Your Schools Your Community
Summer 2014VOLUME 6, NUMBER 3
BHS teacher and alumnus is District 191s Teacher of the YearMark Riggs is a proud graduate of Burnsville
High School who now teaches physical education and health at the school and also advises the Student Council and coaches multiple sports.
The school has been a big part of his life for decades and he is now representing it as the 2014 Burnsville High School Teacher of the Year. Then on May 20, he was named as the 2014 BurnsvilleEaganSavage School District 191 Teacher of the Year in the annual recognition organized by the Burnsville Education Association. Riggs will next be considered for the 2015 Minnesota Teacher of the Year sponsored by Education Minnesota.
My philosophy of teaching is about making the experience of every student a positive one, said Riggs. I always want students to understand the power of knowledge and understand the importance of making lasting
memories along the way. Under his guidance, the Student Council has
developed student leaders who are instrumental in making the high school an inclusive environment for all students. I am proud of the dedication and commitment Student Council members have for school and community. They truly represent our community in a positive way and strive to make our school ONE, said Riggs.
The same could be said of Riggs, who also volunteers through several community organizations including the Minneapolis Miracle, which provides holiday gifts for children in need, the Special Olympics Polar Plunge, the Burnsville Fire Muster and the Burnsville Athletic Club.
In addition to teaching and advising, he has coached football, wrestling and track and field. He currently serves as the athletic coordinator, supervising events in the winter and spring.
Filing opens July 29 for BoardFiling dates are July 29 through Aug. 12 for four
fouryear terms on the BurnsvilleEaganSavage School District 191 Board of Education.
Candidates can file from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. from July 29 through Aug. 11 and from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Aug. 12 with Jami Kenney in the Superintendents Office in the Administrative Services Center, 100 River Ridge Court, Burnsville. The filing fee is $2.
There is no primary election. All those who file for office will be on the ballot for Election Day on Tuesday, Nov. 4, unless they file an affidavit of withdrawal by 5 p.m. on Aug. 14.
A candidate must be: An eligible voter; At least 21 years of age when the term begins, and A resident of District 191 within 30 days before the
general election.The terms of board members Abigail Alt, Dan Luth,
Jim Schmid and Bob VandenBoom expire on Dec. 31. Newlyelected board members will begin their terms in January 2015.
Others on the sevenmember school board include DeeDee Currier, Ron Hill and Sandy Sweep. For more information, call the district at 9527072005.
Partnership provides coding experience at MetcalfThanks to a partnership this
spring with media and information company Thomson Reuters, students at Metcalf Junior High in Eagan got a sixweek introduction to coding using the programming language Python.
F o u r T h o m s o n R e u t e r s employees introduced students to the language, walked them through practice exercises, and helped them build their own code in a weekly afterschool class that began in April.
Metcalf Associate Principal Bill Heim, who provided the connections and legwork to get the partnership in place, said demand for the class was high.
We are really fortunate to have this partnership with Thomson Reuters, he said. Im excited about the opportunities this lets us provide to our students.
The Metcalf coding class is the latest addition to programming opportunities at schools in BurnsvilleEaganSavage District 191 that includes everything from coding clubs at several elementary schools to advanced computer science classes at Burnsville High School.
Thomson Reuters employee Rianna Donahue helps students in the Metcalf Junior High coding class with their work.
Mark Riggs, the District 191 Teacher of the Year, is pictured on the ball field with a physical education class playing softball recently.
Best wishes to all graduates in Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191 as they take the next steps in their lives and go on to colleges, universities, tech schools, the workplace, military or other life paths. We are proud of you! Top students at Burnsville High School were announced during the commencement ceremony on June 6. They are, back row, from left, Molly Calhoon, Ryan Kibler, John Walker, Kristen Resvick; and front row, from left, Molly Dunn, Sarah Ruckes, Kaycie Hagen, Betsy Peterson and Emilie Bachrodt. All are valedictorians, except Walker, who is salutatorian. Photo courtesy of LifeTouch
BHS students collect oral historiesWith the City of Burnsville now observing its 50th anniversary, Burnsville High
School teacher Kristina Aars saw a learning opportunity for her students in American History classes.
Its important for students to see history as a living science, she said. We are all part of it, and we all help to write it.
She assigned them to research local history by interviewing experts at sites related to Burnsvilles past. Students devel-oped questions and fanned out to meet with people at Burns-ville City Hall, Skatev-ille, Fairview Ridges Hospital, Mediterranean Cruise Caf, Buck Hill, St. James Lutheran Church and other local land-marks. They talked with long-time residents and newcomers and asked them why they chose to live and/or work here. Questions focused on what has changed over the years, what residents love to do here and what makes the city unique.
Students wrote individual summaries of their interviews and also contributed to a class presentation that focused on decade-by-decade changes in the city. Read some of the oral histories at www.isd191.org.
Students Joe Davidson, center, and Bryan Soto interview long-time Burnsville resident Len Nachman in the history exhibit at the Ames Center.
Congratulations to the Class of 2014
2STUDENTS SUCCEED Burnsville High School junior Jack Hanson and senior Jeremiah Stubbs earned second- and third-place awards, respectively, for their entries into the Congressional science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) competition in Minnesotas 2nd Congressional District.The competition asked stu-dents to create a software application for mobile, tablet or computers on a platform of their choice. Jacks app, called Easy Trigonometry App allows users to calculate the length and angle measure-ments of any triangle by analyzing a picture on their mobile devices. Jeremiahs app Pre-Calculus Tutor is designed to help students struggling in pre-calculus.
Carrie Mannila, a sophomore at Burnsville High School, and her sister Jennifer, a Metcalf Junior High student, are members of a three-person team that qualified for the Improvisation challenge Destination Imagination Global Finals in Tennessee recently. In the challenge, the team acts out a skit in which their characters solve a problem given to them by the judges. Carrie says the team has conducted a lot of research and practiced all kinds of different possible scenarios with their coach in order to prepare for the unexpected. This is her fourth trip to Global Finals.
STAFF ACHIEVE Steven Orth of Metcalf Junior High was among nine educators selected as recipients of a 2014 Fox 9 Top Teacher Award. He was nominated by the parent of a former student, who praised Orth for always being available for his students. Orth received $900 from Royal Credit Union to use in his classroom. Its been a notable year for Orth. In the spring, he was among 33 teachers selected as semi-finalists for Minnesota Teacher of the Year.
Karra Hartog, food service manager at Gideon Pond Elementary in Burnsville, recently received Honorable Mention for the Dakota County Individual Award for Promoting the Health of the Public. She was recognized for her work as a Smart Choices Student Wellness Champion and for going beyond expectations to promote healthful eating for students. Hartog has more students eating breakfast since she created a grab and go cart.
Artwork by BHS students selected for MVTA busesArtwork created by Burnsville High School stu-dents in Tyler Krebs interactive design class will soon adorn the interior of Minnesota Valley Transit Authority (MVTA) buses. Senior Bakar Elmis work was chosen in the school spirit category; senior Nina Pecks panel was selected in the transit category, and sophomore Jonathan Vang designed the panel chosen to celebrate the City of Burnsvilles Beyond the Yellow Ribbon program.
Todays high school students are very creative and sophisticated in using graphic tools and techniques to complete their projects, said Robin Selvig, MVTA Customer Service Manager. It is exciting to see what the students create and we appreciate the opportu-nity to partner with Burnsville High School.
Several students also received honorable mentions: school spirit senior Alicia Nong and sophomore Jonathan Vang; transit junior Luke Schommer, sophomore Scott Tinkham, junior Vettia Seak, senior Bakar Elmi, and sophomore Quandale Norman; and Beyond the Yellow Ribbon junior Luke Schommer and sophomore Scott Tinkham.
Achievement: We are focused on learning and we get results
National group will help college dreams come true Burnsville High School senior Asha Farah has dreams for the future that include going to college and becoming
a medical doctor. The Michael & Susan Dell Foundation wants to see her dreams come true. They have selected Asha for the Dell Scholars program which will provide her with a $20,000 scholarship and other support she needs to complete a college degree including technology, a mentor, and a national network of other recipients.
The Dell Scholars program was created to recognize students who have overcome significant obstacles to pursue their educations.
Asha will attend St. Catherine University in St. Paul next fall and plans to become an actuary to pay her way through medical school. Eventually, shed like to open a hospital in a developing country.
Asha is going to change whatever community she eventually calls home for the better, said teacher Jenna Gomer. I cant wait to see whats next for her. Shes aiming high and there is no doubt in my mind that she will reach all of her goals.
BHS junior wins local art show, now heads to nationalsBurnsville High School junior artist
Paul Nongs work titled Summer Skies won the Creative SelfExpression juried art show at The Great Frame Up in Burnsville in May.
The show featured artwork by Burnsville High School students and is part of a national competition. Pauls artwork will compete against 16 other pieces that won local competitions held by The Great Frame Up stores around the country.
This is the second significant honor Nong has received for his artwork recently. In April, Nong was named the Minnesota state winner of the Doodle4Google competition sponsored by the Google company. His doodle was a national finalist in that competition.
Paul Nongs artwork has earned notable national recognition.
Metcalf Chess Teams excel at national competition
Students from Metcalf Junior High in BurnsvilleEaganSavage School District 191 shined once again at the National Junior High Chess Championships, held April 2527 in Atlanta.
The Burnsville schools championship team took sixth overall, behind scoring team members Alex Gude, Pratik Nehete, Brian Billman, Zander Gorton and Matthew Helke. Alex also won the trophy for top player under a 1400 rating.
The Under750 team won the national title in its division, beating out 56 other teams from around the country. Its team score of 25 out of 28 was a national record. Noah Helke led the team, winning the national individual title with a perfect 70 record. Collin Ridgeway placed third and also went undefeated. Jackson Reichert took fifth place and Josh Holtzleiter finished in 22nd.
The Under1000 team tied for third. On that team, Sammie Stadick placed fifth individually. The Under1250 team placed ninth, led by a 23rdplace performance by Spencer Robinson. In the Blitz, or speed chess, competition, Metcalf took third place as a team, with Pratik Nehete as the teams top individual in 13th place. Metcalf math teacher Brian Ribnick is the teams coach.
Look for artwork by Bakar Elmi in MVTA buses.
Colleges honor six outstanding juniors at BHSSix highachieving juniors received Junior Book
Awards from prestigious colleges during a ceremony at Burnsville High School (BHS) in May.
Colleges present the awards each year across the country to 11th grade students in recognition of their outstanding academic accomplishments, dedication to learning, leadership, school involvement and community service. Each award recipient receives a book that is connected to the college in some way, often written by a professor or alumnus.
Burnsville High School students who received Junior Book Awards this year are: Sydney Botz Yale University; Evan Fuller - University of Minnesota; Sam Johnson - Dartmouth College; Jasmine Lim - Harvard University; Tessa Nania - Wellesley College; Lauren Warmka Columbia University. Junior Book Awards went to, back row, from left, Sam John-
son, Lauren Warmka and Jasmine Lim, and front row, from left, Even Fuller, Tessa Nania and Sydney Botz.
Asha Farah has dreams of becoming a doctor and opening a hospital in a developing country some day.
Sky Oaks students are winners in poster contest
Six fifthgrade students from Sky Oaks Elementary in Burnsville were named as winners in the Clean Air & Biodiesel Poster Contest, administered by the American Lung Association in Minnesota.
Each participating fifthgrade class had first and second place finishers:
Sheila Czechs class: first place,Tin You; second place, Hanna MuozHalvorson
Michele Griffins class: first place, Lupita Pena Chavez; second place, Sage Magras
Jennifer Walls class: first place, Joshua Acevedo Avila; second place, Melissa Datres
For their work, students who took first place in their classes received a $50 gift card, and second place students received a $25 gift card.
Three Sky Oaks students were also named as overall winners of the contest. Tina You took first overall, Joshua Acevedo Avila placed second, and Hanna MuozHalvorson placed third. Sky Oaks students also swept the top overall spots last year.
The contest, which is also sponsored by the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council, was open to fifth and sixthgrade classes in Minnesota schools.
3Community Connections: Together everyone achieves more
SCHOOL DISTRICT 191BOARD OF EDUCATIONJIM SCHMID, Chair ....................................(952) 882-1651 [email protected]
BOB VANDENBOOM, Vice Chair ..........(651) 454-9516 [email protected]
DEEDEE CURRIER, Clerk ..........................(952) 882-7746 [email protected]
ABIGAIL ALT, Treasurer ............................(612) 239-3421 [email protected]
RON HILL, Director ...................................(952) 440-1016 [email protected]
DAN LUTH, Director .................................(952) 440-1290 [email protected]
SANDRA SWEEP, Director .......................(952) 250-7097 [email protected]
SANGEETHA SHREEDARAN, Student Advisor
Joe Gothard, Superintendent ..............(952) 707-2001 [email protected]
School District 191 does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, disability, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, sexual orientation, age, family care leave status or veteran status.
A B O U T T H I S N E W S L E T T E RThis newsletter is sent periodically to all residents in Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191 to provide information about schools, which are a cor-nerstone of the community. If you have comments, send them to Ruth Dunn, district communications director, at [email protected] or call 952-707-2020.
C O N N E C T W I T H U SBurnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191 strives to keep residents informed and involved in their public schools. Check out the districts TV channel 18 to see programs like Superintendents Spotlight and other news and information.
To get news, pictures, events and more delivered to you where you want them, Like us on Facebook, or/and follow us on Twitter.
Residents may also sign up for the District 191 e-Newsletter.
D I S T R I C T C O N TA C T I N F OPhone: 952-707-2000 Web: www.isd191.org E-mail: [email protected] Welcome Center (Enrollment): 952-707-4180
Like to plan ahead? The school calendar has been approved for the 2014-15 school year in Burnsville-Eagan Savage School District 191 and can be viewed at www.isd191.org. It shows important dates including start dates, holidays and breaks.
Free summer meals available for children
Thanks to a federal program, meals will be provided to children, ages 1 to 18, free of charge this summer at several schools in Burnsville-Eagan-Sav-age School District 191. Meals meet nutritional stan-dards of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Children do not need to be residents of the district in order to participate in the summer food service program. Adult meals will be available for a fee.
Breakfast will be served from 7:45 to 8:45 a.m. and lunch will be 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. All sites will be closed on July 4. Menus are available on the district website at www.isd191.org.
Meals at these sites will be open to the public: Hidden Valley Elementary School, 13875 Glendale
Road, Savage, Mon.Fri. from June 11 to Aug. 22. Nicollet Junior High School, 400 East 134th St.,
Burns ville, Mon.Fri. from June 11 to Aug. 22. Vista View Elementary School, 13109 County Road
5, Mon.Thurs. from July 7 to 31. Burnsville High School, 800 East Highway 13, Burns-
ville, Mon.Fri. from June 11 to Aug. 22, lunch only from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Enjoy free outdoor concertsSummer is a great time to enjoy free outdoor concerts in a park setting. The Wednesday in the Park concerts begin at 7 p.m. in Civic Center Park near Burnsville City Hall. They are brought to you through a long-time partnership of the City of Burnsville and Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191 Community Education. For more information, visit www. commu-nityed191.org.
Concert schedule: July 9: The Percolators rock from the
60s on upJuly 16: The Dakota Valley Summer
Pops and ChoraleJuly 23: The Zinghoppers Group (espe-
cially fun for kids!)July 30: Machinery Hill American folk Aug. 6: Remembering the King, Steve
and Tommy Marcio
Tutors needed for preschool programs
Tutors are needed in BurnsvilleEaganSavage School District 191 to help children succeed in school by giving them the extra support they need to read. Minnesota Reading Corps the nations largest state AmeriCorps program trains tutors to impact students in schools across Minnesota.
Preschool literacy tutors are sought for early childhood programs at Diamondhead Education Center, Hamilton in Savage, and Rahn Elementary in Eagan. Commit to a year of service and receive a living stipend and an education award. For more information contact: Kay Shogren at [email protected]
Harriet Bishop Service Club earns state awardThe School Service Club at Harriet Bishop Elementary
in BurnsvilleEaganSavage School District 191 received the 2014 Lt. Governors Red Wagon Award in recognition for its work increasing civic engagement and showing exemplary leadership in the community.
Started in 2012 by then thirdgrader Shrey Pothini, the studentled club now has 90 members who have collectively volunteered more than 2,500 hours on a variety of service projects. Students in the club meet twice per month after school to learn about a local
nonprofit organization and its needs, and then plan a project to provide support. The clubs motto is Young but Powerful.
During the 201314 school year alone, the club has sent educational supplies to schools in Guatemala, organized adults and students to donate hair to make wigs for cancer patients, written 250 cards to injured military service members, tied 100 fleece blankets for the Minnesota Animal Humane Society, and much more.
Six volunteers selected for Coskran Award in District 191
Six individuals received 2014 John Coskran Volunteer Awards in BurnsvilleEaganSavage School District 191 in May. They are Greg Amell, Erica Jensen, Betsy Kauffman, Tom Marlow, Jill Miller and Sherry WagnerSmith.
We thank these exceptional volunteers for the positive difference they make in the lives of our students every day, said Superintendent Joe Gothard. Their dedication and support is extraordinary and so is their focus on
academic success for all students. This is the 13th year of the awards which are named
in honor of John Coskran, a former school board member and longtime advocate for volunteerism.
Read more about the recipients and get information on how you can become a volunteer by going to www.isd191.org and click on the Volunteering link under Community or contact Ruth Dunn at (952) 7072020.
DARTS connects volunteers with schoolsAre you looking for a rewarding volunteer experience that provides you
with a way to have a positive impact on your community? Volunteers are needed this fall to help enhance reading, math and science skills of students in all 10 elementary schools in BurnsvilleEaganSavage School District 191.
The DARTS Learning Buddies Program has served Dakota County communities since 1997 by connecting older adults with elementary students to support academics, share experiences, and learn from one another.
T h i s i n t e r g e n e r a t i o n a l program makes it easy to volunteer by providing training, transportation and ongoing support. For more information about becoming a Learning Buddy, please visit www.dartsconnects.org/learningbuddies or call Erin Walloch at (651) 2342227.
Bryant Benjamin has been a DARTS Learning Buddy since 2006.
Recipients of the 2014 John Coskran Volunteer Awards are, from left, Betsy Kauffman, Jill Miller, Tom Marlow, Greg Amell, Erica Jensen and Sherry Wagner-Smith.
A mural for McColl ELC
Fifth-graders at Hidden Valley Elementary School in Savage learned about food chains and ecosystems and then created tiles for a mural that was installed at the City of Savages McColl Pond ELC in May. Mayor Janet Williams, left, cut the ribbon at the unveiling of the mural. The learning project that integrated art and science was taught by the schools science specialist, Pat Mosey, center, and art teacher Lynn Pauly (not pictured).
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In this issue: Teacher of the Year . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 1
Candidates can file for Board . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 1
National art success . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 2
Metcalf earns more trophies . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 2
Six receive volunteer award . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 3
Free summer concerts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 3
Your Schools Your CommunityPrincipals will read to children over the summer
Elementary principals from Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191 will be reading wonderful books at 11:30 a.m. on Thursdays at Nicollet Commons Park in Burnsville Heart of the City through the Rockin Readers program.
Just look for the rocking chair and come enjoy the sto-ries!Books are geared toward elementary and preschool chil-dren. Stay for the free Rockin Lunch Hour concerts sponsored by the City of Burnsville.
The line-up of principals: June 26: Shannon McParland from Sioux Trail July 10: Jon Bonneville from Hidden Valley July 17: Brad Robb from Vista View July 24: Drew Goeldner from Sky Oaks July 31: Lyle Bomsta from William Byrne Aug. 7: Jeff Nepsund from Marion W. Savage Aug. 14: Elizabeth Vaught from Edward Neill Aug. 21: Barbara Borer from Rahn
Cheers to the amazing Class of 2014
Hardworking. Determined. Goal oriented. Artistic. Service minded. Athlet ic . Motivated. Confident.
These are just a few of the words that come to mind when I think about the learners and leaders who make up the Class of 2014 in BurnsvilleEaganSavage School District 191. I have been
impressed, whether communicating with them via Twitter, recognizing their accomplishments at school board meetings, speaking to their classes, hearing their beautiful voices or instrumental talents in concerts, watching them act on stage or seeing them compete as Blaze athletes. I have come to appreciate and admire these awesome graduates.
I felt tremendous pride when looking out at them during this years commencement ceremonies for the BEST transition program, Burnsville Alternative High School and Burnsville High School. It has been
a privilege to lead District 191 in this, my first year in the BurnsvilleEaganSavage School community. It was an honor to share in their high school commencement along with their families and friends.
These graduates are part of the unique tradition of this great high school and community. We stand behind all of them in their future pursuits and are confident that they can and will accomplish their dreams. Their journeys would not be complete without the support of their families, friends and mentors. And I thank our amazing staff throughout the district for their tireless efforts to provide the best educational and extracurricular opportunities for every student.
Our entire community is proud of our graduates and supports their future goals and aspirations as they attend a number of different colleges and universities, enter the workforce directly or serve proudly in our nations military each of them living out our districts mission of Each Student RealWorld Ready.
I wish continued courage and resilience to all graduates as they navigate the important choices awaiting them. I hope they know they have a community behind them that believes in their talents, compassion and ability to succeed. Go Blaze!
Lyle Bomsta, principal at William Byrne Elementary School, is pictured reading to students last summer.
Congratulations to the Burnsville High School Class of 2014 as they head off to colleges, universities, tech schools, the workplace, the military or wherever their plans will take them. We wish you all the best in life!
Are you new to the district? Enrollment for all new students takes place online at www.isd191.org or at the districts Welcome Center, lower level, of Diamondhead Education Center, 200 W. Burns-ville Parkway. For more information, call the Welcome Center at (952) 707-4180 or email at [email protected]
Cheers to the amazing class of 2014In last para: I wish continued courage and resilience to all graduates as they navigate. . . Cutline under graduate photo: Congratulations to the Burnsville High School Class