August 12, 2018

Student News

  • In photos: Embracing summer adventures!
  • Pedaling away
  • Summer explorations
  • Community compassion
  • Hands-on learning
  • Activities updates


School Board News

  • School Board Meetings


District News

  • General Information
  • Awards and Honors


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In photos: Embracing summer adventures!


Student News

Pedaling away

One pedal after the next, students hopped on their bikes and enjoyed exploring the beauty and nature of the White Bear area. A partnership with BikeMN (Bike Alliance of Minnesota) allowed staff to offer a Wheely Cool Bike Camp to community and Extended Day students at Birch Lake Elementary. Highlights included teaching bike safety (Walk! Bike! Fun! curriculum) and putting it into action by bilking around the Birch Lake Elementary neighborhood. Participants also enjoyed destination bike rides to Lincoln Elementary, Podvin Park, Yost Park and Cup and Cone! Students reflected on what they learned and enjoyed the most about the camp, which was the ABC (air, brake, chain) Quick Check, ice cream treats and just getting to go on many fun adventures! One student said they couldn't believe their legs could bike so much, so far! 


While some students pedaled away, others learned about pedals in a different way. Students transformed into Gardening Gurus after a class where they focused on learning about soil, the types of plants that grow best in Minnesota and other secret gardening tips at Birch Lake Elementary. Each student was able to take home a plotted plant that they learned all about. In other fun news, families are invited to join the White Bear Lake Area Schools Indian Education staff and American Indian Parent Advisory Committee members as they celebrate the beginning of the new school year at an exciting Back to School event. There will be food and family-friendly activities at the event that will take place on Monday, August 20 at 5:45 p.m. at Lakewood Hills Park. View this flyer for more details about the opportunity. The American Indian Parent Advisory Committee is a parent driven initiative that meets regularly throughout the school year and focuses on working collaboratively with representatives of White Bear Lake Area Schools toward better outcomes for all self-identified American Indian students. More information about the initiative can be found on the District's website.

Summer explorations

Students at Otter Lake Elementary had the opportunity to interact with and learn about some unique animals through Tori and her Precious Pets. They had the chance to learn about, touch, and observe turtles, tortoises, hermit crabs, lizards and other small animals. Exciting visitors continued to stop by the elementary school as Deputy Mary Bergstrom, of the Ramsey County Sheriff's Office, also met with students at Otter Lake Elementary to talk with them about safety and community helpers. Students learned about Deputy Bergstrom's job, and all the ways that law enforcement officers help to keep the community safe. They also were able to discuss ways in which their actions contribute to safety. Students excitedly explored the law enforcement vehicle that Deputy Bergstrom drove to Otter Lake Elementary. While students enjoyed learning more about the Ramsey County Sheriff's Office, community members enjoyed the sounds and experiences of the Ukulele Group.

The fun experiences continued as a Norwegian exchange student who studied at WBLAHS in 2016-17 took an exciting trip back to White Bear this summer with their family. During their visit, they were able to explore White Bear Lake Area High School - South Campus and other places they made memories at during their time a couple years ago - including finding their name on a framed 2008-2017 student list that was a retirement gift to Dr. Lovett! Staff also enjoyed spending time out in the community on Thursday nights for Marketfest this summer. Every week, community members and staff had the opportunity to enjoy conversations together at the White Bear Lake Area Schools Marketfest booth. The summer fun was captured in this video. In other fun news, everyone is invited to participate in the 2018-19 #BackToSchoolBears Facebook Challenge by posting why they are excited for the upcoming school year for a chance to win a Cup and Cone treat, hand-delivered from Bear. Learn more about how to participate and have a chance at being the winner!

Community compassion

Speaking of hands-on experiences, Extended Day students were busy cleaning for a cause. Students had fun washing and drying cars, as well as hosting a snack stand, for the Suds, Snacks & Service event. This is an annual service opportunity that is held to benefit the White Bear Area Emergency Food Shelf. The event was a success, as they raised $269 and collected 252 pounds of food! Other Extended Day students and staff at Oneka Elementary also have been working to collect food for others. They enjoyed their annual staff versus student food drive where they celebrated their success with the initiative at a pie toss. Also, students who participated in the summer reading Bookawocky program were able to get their names drawn for prizes. The kindness continued as other students and community members put their feet forward for a cause. The community gathered for the White Bear Lake Area Relay for Life event to show support for those impacted by cancer, such as White Bear Football Coach Ryan Bartlett. The coach walked the Survivors' Lap along with family, friends, and a sea of orange supporters who wore Team Bartlett t-shirts to show their support. Students have been stepping up in many ways to support their coach, such as showing up at the White Bear Lake Area Relay for Life Marketfest booth where they sold orange "Team Bartlett" bracelets and had a football toss game. In other Bearified news, there is Bear spirit wear available to purchase during the first session of the Homecoming online store through Friday, September 7, which will be ready for distribution during the week of September 24. There is a second session that will open on Monday, September 10 and close on Monday, October 1, which will not be delivered in time for Homecoming.

The rewarding opportunities continued as several freshmen have been embracing their roles as interns in the FLEX program this summer. FLEX is afterschool programming for middle school students during the school year, and full-day programming is offered on most non-school days and during the summer. The interns are able to enjoy fun activities with students, field trips and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics) opportunities. During FLEX, the interns are able to serve as role models in a program that is focused on encouraging leadership in a choice-based, student-driven and relaxed environment. The interns said they have learned new skills such as how to fix lockers, be even more understanding and compassionate. Other students have the opportunity to learn more about growing their leadership and relationships skills through the 2018 Spotlight on a Cause program, which is a program that strives to teach students about being a leader in their local community and greater world through the original production "Jelly Beans the Cheetah and Hope." Learn more about the opportunity. In other theatre news, community members were able to recently enjoy successful performances of "Big Fish, A New Musical," which was a production of the alumni-founded White Bear Lake Community Players Theatre, which also had ties to the District's Community Services and Recreation Department.

Hands-on learning

Students were invited to St. Paul College to experience advanced manufacturing and welding first-hand at the Imagine it, Design it, Make it Camp. During the opportunity, students were able to learn some welding and basic machining. In other Career Pathways news, several students enjoyed their time in the MN Trades Academy, which is a paid summer construction internship program for those who are selected to participate in the Twin Cities Area. Hard hats, hammers, ladders, and all, students are able to get hands-on experience in this program that prepares youth for life-long learning in hopes of getting them access to good jobs in the construction industry. Other White Bear students embraced their time at FireFly Computers where they could learn more about technology through the business that offers school computing solutions to customers including Chromebooks and laptops. Students, staff and families recently celebrated students' hard work and commitment during the Gen Z Connections program at a closing ceremony. Gen Z Connections focuses on ensuring students receive hands-on experience and gain manufacturing skills through paid internships. White Bear Lake Area Schools and the Career Pathways Program also embraced an exciting experience, as the community came together for an Employer Breakfast where industry partners could learn more about the opportunities offered to students and community partnerships through the expanding program. Check out the latest edition of the WBLAS Career Pathways Newsletter and the Special Edition

The innovative experiences continued as District Digital Learning Specialist Ryan Clark embraced the topic of "How might we make learning feel more personal?," at the Google Innovator Academy in July. Ryan was one of just 36 educators from around the U.S. who was chosen to attend. The Google Innovator Academy is just one part of a whole year of programming, including a year-long formal mentorship with an established innovator, designed to support iterations of the minimum viable product that they designed at the academy. During the experience in Venice, California, innovators were able to learn about each other's projects, connect, find inspiration, and immerse themselves in a Google-focused culture. Other district leaders were also able to embrace an educational trip in July, as three district staff members visited iconic locations from the Civil Rights Movement in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Tennessee and Mississippi. The learning experience was made possible through a WBLAEF Glasrud Fellowship. Read more about their reflections and time on their journeys. 


Activities Updates

Central Middle School seventh grader Lily Pederson qualified for the national elite gymnastics competition and won the bronze medal on beam and placed fourth in the all-around, earning a spot on the HOPES National Team. Lily has also been named to the National Development Team and will begin training with the National Team Training Staff in Tennessee for a week at a time beginning in October. 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 Meetings
School Board meeting agendas, packets, minutes highlights and videos/audio files can be found here.

Date Type Time Location
August 13 Regular 7 p.m. District Center
August 27 Work-Study 5:30 p.m. District Center 
September 10 Regular 7 p.m. District Center

For highlights from the most recent Board meeting, click here