Note from the Superintendent
We’ve recently had great conversations with community members regarding the Nov. 5 Bond Referendum, both at three public meetings and at PTA/PTO presentations throughout the district. The Public Meeting presentation and materials are available online at www.isd624.org/Bond2019.
Voting is now open. Find information below about how you can vote in person, by mail or on Election Day:
Absentee ballot applications are available at all school offices or online at www.isd624.org/bond2019. Complete and submit an absentee ballot application for the county where you live, as noted on the back of the application. Once you submit the application, a ballot will be sent to you with instructions. Ballots must be received by Nov. 5.
Polls will be open on Nov. 5, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Your polling location is determined by where you live and may be different from previous elections. Visit www.mnvotes.org or call 651-407-7563 to find your location. Note: There is no school on Election Day.
Check out more fun pictures of just a few of the many Homecoming opportunities, including the parade, football game and Homecoming BearPower 6.24K Family Fun Run/Walk event, on the district's Facebook page.
The Homecoming excitement filled the community! There was a great time had by many as community members, graduates, students, staff members and families gathered for all of the Homecoming-related celebrations! Students were able to get full of Bear-pride at their Pep Fest events, which can be seen in this video. Central Middle School students kicked off the Homecoming Day with their Central Kindness in Chalk activity. This was a fun way for students to greet their fellow classmates by writing positive messages with chalk on the sidewalk and cheering them on as they entered into the building! Check out the excitement in this video. Later in the Homecoming Day, the community was invited to enjoy the parade in downtown White Bear Lake while then being able to head to the football game against East Ridge!
The weekend festivities didn't stop there! The next morning, all were invited to continue showing off their Bear spirit at the Homecoming BearPower 6.24K Family Fun Run/Walk event. Many families attended and Lakeaires Elementary is taking home the trophy for having the most participants at the 2019 event! After the running event, families could relax and enjoy the All-School Reunion that was taking place at District Center. At the All-School Reunion, attendees could enjoy a pancake breakfast sponsored by the Lion’s Club, alumni car show, District Center tours, photos with Bear and the Bell, and a book signing with author David Gehrenbeck. Graduates were also able to pick up some unclaimed diplomas if they were available.
There was even a special surprise in honor of Homecoming week! The White Bear community received a special shoutout from Thomas Valles and Johnny Sameniego who were runners on a cross country team whose stories inspired the McFarland, USA film. Spanish Teacher Mary Hellmark has been showing the McFarland, USA movie in their class for 14 years. The film is described to be based on real life events of students in an underprivileged, Latino community (McFarland, California), and showcases how a teacher heads up their first ever cross country team. The team and coach end up gaining nation-wide recognition and numerous championship titles. Mary had travelled to McFarland a few years back and tagged McFarland High School on Facebook, and they have remained virtual friends! Recently, they sent a video to share with White Bear Lake Area Schools wishing all good luck on Homecoming activities! It was a great wrap-up of another successful Homecoming week.
Community members were recently invited to attend three Bond Referendum Public Meetings. A video snippet of these meetings can be seen in this video. The presentation from the meetings can be found here and a video along with answers to questions asked during the time will be available at www.isd624.org/Bond2019 soon. From one community-building experience to the next, Central Middle School’s 6th, 7th, and 8th-grade AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) students went to the Trollhaugen Aerial Ropes Course for a fun-filled day of camaraderie, facing challenges, and building confidence. Students sailed through the tree canopy on ziplines and climbed platforms and swaying bridges off of the ground!
Speaking of fun-filled days, Lakeaires Elementary students were recently able to enjoy art lessons! Students learned about endangered animals and created a neon tiger line drawing to acknowledge the beauty of the animal and appreciate nature! The exciting experience can be seen in this video.
Lincoln Elementary was recently named one of 362 schools throughout the country to be named as National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2019. The recognition is based on a school’s overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups. Only ten schools in Minnesota are being recognized in the program this year. The award affirms the hard work put in to creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging and engaging content. Lincoln was recognized as an Exemplary High Performing School as being among Minnesota’s highest performing schools as measured by state assessments or nationally normed tests. Lincoln Elementary will be celebrated along with other honorees at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C. later this fall. This spring, the school community will host a more formal Blue Ribbon celebration at the school to thank those, past and present, who positively impacted students within the learning community. Check out the full press release and additional information about the Blue Ribbon program can be found here.
In other exciting news, congratulations to WBLAHS - South Campus student, Skylar Lamminen for receiving the Young Entrepreneur Award from White Bear Area Chamber of Commerce. Skylar is currently a Junior who runs Bear Nutrition in White Bear Lake with their family. Another congratulations to Career Pathways Navigator Jenny Moore for receiving the 2019 Business Achievement Award for Excellence in Student Workforce Development. WBL Career Pathways is excited to continue creating and aligning educational opportunities for our local industry partners. The accomplishments continued as Assistant Superintendent Sara Paul recently spoke at the Vadnais Heights Econcomic Development Corporation's Women in Leadership series!
Hard work paying off
Sunrise Park Middle School students have been and will continue to be applauded for all of their positive contributions to the school throughout the week! Staff have been writing students positive referrals where they then are recognized for all of the great actions they take! The staff members also then notify students' parents to let them know about all of their awesome work. Building staff members say this is a great way to showcase and reward students for all of their kindness and helpfulness. The positive referral experience can be seen in this video.
From one positive student experience to the next, it was all about scrubbing up recently at WBLAHS - South Campus. Students in the CNA class had the opportunity to practice making beds, CPR and putting on their scrubs and gloves. The classroom experience will help them be successful in their upcoming clinical hours at Cerenity Senior Care. The hands-on learning can be seen in this video. Outside of the classroom, families enjoyed a Family Feast - Intentional Social Interaction event at Willow Lane Elementary. This was an important evening where families gathered over a meal to have great conversations while collaborating about creating positive experiences for students and the community. In other positive community news, fifth grade students at Birch Lake Elementary recently said a big "thank you" and shared their gratitude to the Meet Market in White Bear Lake for donating towards their Wolf Ridge environmental trip. This annual experience allows students to explore new interests, take on new adventures and bond together as a class at the learning center.
The WBLAHS boys' cross country team recently won the 34th annual Roy Griak Invitational, the biggest meet in the country, against strong teams from many states. Check out their accomplishment in this White Bear Press article. 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.
The Week in 62.4 Seconds
Enjoy The Week in 62.4 Seconds videos highlighting weekly district activities throughout the school year.
School Board News
Board Passes Resolution Confirming No Eminent Domain for High School Project
At its September 23 Board meeting, the White Bear Lake Area School Board unanimously passed a resolution confirming that the district will not use eminent domain for additional land around the current White Bear Lake Area High School - North Campus if the November 5 referendum is approved by voters. View full press release.
- Building Bond 2019 Referendum Update - On November 5, White Bear Lake Area School District residents will vote whether to provide funding for building needs across the district. If approved, the bond funding would provide space for our growing enrollment, improve school safety and security, address deferred maintenance needs and update classrooms for more flexible learning spaces. We invite you to become more familiar with the bond referendum, which impacts all of our buildings and students, by visiting the district's website (www.isd624.org/Bond2019).
- Board Passes Resolution Confirming No Eminent Domain for High School Project - At its September 23 Board meeting, the White Bear Lake Area School Board unanimously passed a resolution confirming that the district will not use eminent domain for additional land around the current White Bear Lake Area High School - North Campus if the November 5 referendum is approved by voters. View full press release.
- Voting Information - Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Election Day. Absentee voting began on Sept. 20. Find complete Early Voting information here. The district’s website - www.isd624.org/Bond2019 - houses the most complete and up-to-date information regarding the bond referendum.
- Bond Referendum videos - Check out the Why and the What videos to learn more regarding the 2019 Bond Referendum.
- Coffee with Dr. K - Community members are invited to stop by and chat with Superintendent Dr. Wayne Kazmierczak (Dr. K) over a cup of coffee at the Downtown White Bear Lake Caribou Coffee. There is no set agenda, so please feel free to order from the barista and find Dr. K in the meeting room to join the conversation!
- Upcoming “Coffee with Dr. K” events:
- 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. on October 23
- 4:30-5:30 p.m. on January 9
- 7:30-8:30 a.m. on March 3
- 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. on May 5
- Upcoming “Coffee with Dr. K” events:
- Safety Information Night - Parents are invited to Safety Information Night from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, November 6 at WBLAHS - South Campus. The free Information Night is an opportunity for parents to enjoy a free dinner and learn more about mental health, human trafficking, internet safety, youth drug trends and awareness, teen driving laws and safety. Free childcare is available for those in need. To register for daycare, please email Sergeant John Vette at JVette@whitebearlake.org and include your children's names and ages. Learn more.
- Early childhood opportunities:
- Free Community Baby Shower - You and your baby are invited join other parents of new babies, birth to six months old, for a free Community Baby Shower from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 15 at Normandy Park Education Center. Learn more.
- Children's Sleeping Habits - Families are invited to learn more about children's sleeping habits at a free early childhood event from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 7 at District Center. View this flyer for more information.
- Monthly Mental Well-Being Series - District staff and families are invited to attend monthly presentations focused on mental well-being throughout the school year. The second presentation will take place from 7-8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 10 at the District Center Community Room 112. The topic will be Understanding Eating Disorders by Emily Program, Jillian Lampert, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.D., L.D., F.A.E.D. Find more information on the district's website.
- Movie Night - White Bear Indian Education will be presenting Movie Night at 6 p.m. on Oct. 16, Nov. 20 and Dec. 18 at District Center! View this flyer for more information.
- Career Pathways Newsletter - Please enjoy the October 2019 Career Pathways Newsletter!
- 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!
- Congratulations to Career Pathways Navigator Jenny Moore for receiving the 2019 Business Achievement Award for Excellence in Student Workforce Development. WBL Career Pathways is excited to continue creating and aligning educational opportunities for our local industry partners.
- October Recognitions:
- National Principals Month
- Oct. 2 - National Custodial Worker Day
- Oct. 5 - World Teachers Day
- Oct. 8 & 9 - Yom Kippur
- Oct. 14-18 - National School Lunch Week
- Oct. 14 - Indigenous Peoples Day
- Oct. 15 - End of Hispanic Heritage Month
- Oct. 16 - National Boss’s Day
- Oct. 21-25 - National Safe Schools Week/National School Bus Safety Week
- 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! Check out the Fall 2019 Community Services Catalog.
- 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.
- Senior Voice - Check out the latest edition of the Senior Voice.
- 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.