June 23, 2019
Our school principals, district administrators and Board members look forward to having terrific conversations with community members at Marketfest this summer. Please be sure to stop by the district’s booth Thursdays through July 25 in Downtown White Bear Lake to receive a free pencil and Bear Paw temporary tattoo. Also, watch for other district-related booths and scheduled entertainment in the fun Downtown White Bear Lake summertime tradition. In other fun summer updates, District students who won the "Bears That Shine" Manitou Days Writing Contest represented the district in the recent Manitou Days Parade. Their essays were published by the White Bear Press! Other students had fun handing out candy as they walked the route and sported their Bear gear! Go Bears!
It was an exciting time for students, as they were able to get hands-on construction opportunities at a Learn2Build experience! Learn2Build exposes middle school students to a variety of career possibilities in Minnesota's Construction and Skilled Trades Industry. Students learned how to measure, cut, read blueprints, operate machinery, and use construction related skills to build! Students worked individually and in teams to learn about construction concepts and designs. They built take-home projects replicating real-world construction materials and processes. The experience included a combination of industry professionals, team competitions, and hands-on projects. WBLAS Career Pathways students are embracing the opportunity in the GenZ Connection Program which is a paid, experiential learning program that allows students to see all the career possibilities in Manufacturing, Engineering, and Automotive industries. This is a positive learning experience for students due to a collaborative partnership with local employers, organizations and WBLAS.
Student Sophie Davis has been hard at work advocating for Race 2 Reduce water conservation programming for four years now, which has had a positive impact on students throughout White Bear Lake Area Schools! The Race 2 Reduce curriculum has helped students acquire knowledge about water resource issues, and they have also developed advocacy skills, changed personal behaviors and influenced others to be more conservation minded.
Sunrise Park Middle School students were recently in Washington, D.C. for National History Day. Student Calvin Weier earned a National Honorable Mention Award, finishing in 11th place, and received a NHD medal for the outstanding state entry for their individual exhibit on the 1992 Los Angeles Riots. Every state selects one outstanding junior division and one senior division entry that best represents the state. Back in Minnesota, three White Bear educators are getting to embrace the opportunity to enjoy externships at local organizations! Seth Salenger, Katie Marsh, and Colleen Dunnigan were all selected by White Bear Area Chamber of Commerce to work as teacher externs this summer where they have been matched with employers related to their classroom instruction for one week. The White Bear Area Chamber of Commerce Business Education Network (BEN) seeks to narrow the workforce skills gap by better connecting employers with high school and college students. They are getting to work with employers at HealthPartners, Press Publications and CHIPS to bring back what they learn to their classroom!
A multi-generation alumni committee is currently planning an All-School Reunion, intended for former students, staff members and all community members. The celebration will take place on the weekend of Homecoming 2019 - Saturday, September 28 - with activities such as a pancake breakfast, an alumni car show, tours of District Center and the dedication of the Washington School Bell, which was recently celebrated with a groundbreaking ceremony.
WBLAHS Homecoming events that will take place that weekend as well are the Homecoming parade and football game on Friday evening and the Homecoming BearPower 6.24K Family Fun Run/Walk on Saturday. Official details will be announced by the Alumni Association as they are finalized, but community members are invited to mark their calendars to attend!
Students were recognized at the June 10 School Board Student Recognition Ceremony for state-level honors in boys' golf, boys' and girls' track, HOSA and adapted softball. Go Bears!
Find a complete list of all WBLAHS Activities, Athletics and Fine Arts here.
Please contact the Communications Department (651-407-7695) to submit Student News for inclusion in future publications.
School Board News
School Board Recognitions
Before the June 10 School Board Meeting, the School Board congratulated the following students and staff members for their accomplishments with:
- Boys’ Golf (not pictured)
- Girls’ State Track (not pictured)
- Boys’ State Track
- Adapted Softball
- Facilities Planning FAQ - Complete information about the Facilities Planning process can be found on the district's website.
- School Board authorizes administration to develop parameters for a November bond referendum - At the June 10, 2019 regular meeting, the White Bear Lake Area School Board unanimously approved a motion to authorize district administration to develop parameters for a November 5, 2019 bond referendum to address building needs across the district. The parameters will be discussed at the June 27 work-study meeting and acted upon at the July 15 regular school board meeting. Learn more.
- ISD 624 recognized for accounting and financial reporting for 19 consecutive years - The White Bear Lake Area School Board recently received an Excellence in Financial Reporting award from the Association of School Business Officials (ASBO) and the Government Finance Officers Association’s (GFOA’s) Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting, the highest forms of recognition given in the area of governmental accounting and financial reporting. ISD 624 has received the awards for 19 consecutive years. Learn more.
- School Board approves contract for Central Middle School principal - At the May 13, 2019 Regular Meeting, the White Bear Lake Area School Board approved the contract of Cathryn Peterson. Peterson will serve as the new Central Middle School Principal, a position that will be vacated when current Principal Tim Schochenmaier becomes superintendent at Central Public Schools (Norwood Young America, Minn.) on July 1, 2019. Learn more.
- Cone with Dr. K - Community members are invited to stop by and chat with White Bear Lake Area Schools Superintendent Dr. Wayne Kazmierczak over an ice cream treat from 2-3 p.m. on Tuesday, August 13 at Cup and Cone (2126 4th Street, White Bear Lake). There is no set agenda, so please feel free to order a treat from the server and find Dr. K at a reserved table to join the conversation!
- Sauer Family Foundation Grants - Colleen O’Keefe, Executive Director for the Sauer Family Foundation, was in attendance to present grants to Willow Lane, Vadnais Heights, and Birch Lake Elementary Schools to support trauma sensitive schools programming. With the generous support of the Sauer Family Foundation, we will continue the Alive! Program at Willow Lane and we are able to expand the program to Vadnais Heights and Birch Lake Elementary schools for the 2019-20 school year. In addition to funding the Alive! Program, Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) received a grant from the Sauer Foundation to implement, Conscious Discipline, in all of the White Bear Lake Area Schools Early Childhood Programs.
- Nutrition Services updates:
- Request for Refund - If your student is graduating or moving out of the district and still has money in their meal account, please complete the Request for Refund Form. For information on the Nutrition Services Angel Fund, please visit the Nutrition Services webpage and view "Angel Fund and Donations" under the "Meal Costs and Payments" tab.
- Free Summer Meals - There are free summer meals available throughout the community for kids and teens who are 18 years old and younger. Learn more.
- Party in Park - The Community Services and Recreation department is hosting a Party in the Park for all families from 5-7 p.m. on Wednesday, June 26 at the Stellmacher Park Pavilion (3930 Linden Street, White Bear Lake). There will be a picnic dinner, sports, games and crafts. Check out this flyer for more information about this free event.
- Tamarack's Summer Offerings - Families are invited to play and learn at Tamarack Nature Center this summer. Learn more about the opportunities.
- We Are Hiring! - The district is hiring for a variety of positions. Find the online application page here.
- Stay connected! - Join White Bear Lake Area Schools' social media circles - Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
- Calling all baby models - We're looking for "Born to be a Bear" photos! Email photos to us here and you may find your little one featured in District publications!
- July Recognitions:
- July 4 - Independence Day
Please contact the Communications Department (651-407-7578) to submit District News, General Information, Opportunities or Awards & Honors for inclusion in future publications.
The WBLAS Community Services and Recreation Department provides a wide range of services and opportunities that enhance the quality of life for all members of ISD 624.
- Seasonal catalogs are available now! You can find them here.
- Digital Backpack information is emailed to parents every other Thursday and available here.
- The Senior Program has two guides available for seniors. Read the 2019 White Bear Area Guide to Senior Housing and the 2019 White Bear Area Guide to Senior Transportation.
- Check out the latest edition of the Senior Voice.
- The latest edition of the Community Bridge Consortium newsletter is available.
The White Bear Area Senior Center is a program of the White Bear Lake Area Schools Community Services & Recreation Department.
- FREE Activity Pass for Senior Community Members (age 65+) - White Bear Lake Area Schools offer a variety of activities - home athletic contests, concerts, and theater productions to name a few. Join us! Call the Superintendent's Office at 651-407-7563 to request a FREE Activity Pass for home athletics events and a District Activities Calendar. Find the application here. The Activities Pass is available to residents of the White Bear Lake Area School District who are age 65 and older. The FREE Activity Pass for community members can now be picked up at the Senior Center (2484 East County Road F, White Bear Lake), as well as the District Center (4855 Bloom Avenue, White Bear Lake)!
- Be a Bear! The district currently has many staff openings available! Find the online application page here.