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In Photos: Bear Power!

Student News

Learning Experiences

Students at Birch Lake Elementary enjoyed a musical performance. The Julius Quartet professional music group stopped by a few classrooms. They performed several pieces of chamber music as students learned about different string instruments, what a melody is and what each of their roles are in the group. This visit was highlighted in a recent video issue of "The Week in 62.4 Seconds" here. 

First graders at Lakeaires Elementary were able to see their creations come to life, thanks to a partnership with a group of art students from WBLAHS - South Campus. The students drew 2D monsters and the high school students turned their art work into 3D stuffed animals! 

Students at Lincoln Elementary took part in a fun activity in their new multipurpose lab. They practiced writing Chinese charaters using calligraphy. This lesson is an important step as they learn more about Chinese culture in their World Language class. You can see this lesson come to life in a recent video here.  

At Transition Education Center, students are learning important classroom lessons. Some learned about health and wellness. Others participated in lessons focused on social emotional learning, learning how to handle different points of view. See their lessons in action in a recent video here.

Some of the district's youngest Bears enjoyed a meal together in their pj's. Preschoolers in Ms. Jackie's class at Normandy Park held a friendship feast. The students are learning about how to be a good friend and sharing ways to be kind, which is an important skill in any classroom! 

WBLAHS students in Manufacturing 1, a concurrent enrollment course with Century College, received a special lesson on 3D technology. The students heard a presentation from a Century College instructor, who then scanned their heads with a 3D scanner.  The students spent time editing the files which Century then printed using a 3D printer. The high school students took a field trip to Century, where they received a tour of the Engineering spaces and got the 3D prints of their modified heads. They were also able to work with Robots, 3D printing technologies and material identification systems.

High school students who are members of the Superintendent’s High School Student Advisory met with Dr. K and other district leaders over lunch. A number of important topics were discussed, including an overview of the district’s Career Pathways program, an update on the district’s student information system, and highlights of furniture and high school projects included in the district’s Building Our Future facilities process. This advisory meeting was highlighted in a recent video here. 

Community members stopped by Caribou Coffee for an informal chat during the first of three “Coffee with Dr. K” events. These periodic get-togethers are great opportunities to sit down and discuss district or community-related topics. Join us for similar events later this school year - on February 10 and May 10. This event was also featured in a recent video issue of "The Week in 62.4 Seconds" here.

Members of the community also gathered recently for an evening Drum and Dance event sponsored by the WBLAS American Indian Education Program. The group recently issued a Save the Date for similar events, with the Little Earth Singers performing on the drums, that will take place from 6-7:30 p.m. on Dec. 9 and Dec. 13. Additional details will be available closer as the event approaches.

District Kudos

Six WBLAHS students signed National Letters of Intent, committing to play sports at the college level at a combination of D1 and D2 schools throughout the country. The students who took part are pictured below (from left to right) Lauren Eckerle - Soccer, South Dakota State University (D1), Jordyn Meyer - Softball, Creighton University (D1), Brock Ollilla - Lacrosse, Rockhurst University (D2), Shea Raeburn - Lacrosse, Maryville University (D2), Alexis Smith - Soccer, Stetson University (D1), Derrick Smith - Baseball, NC-State (D1).

The Boys' Cross Country team placed 10th out of 16 teams at the 2021 MSHSL Boys Cross Country Championships. Senior Ernie Mattson finished the 5K course in 15:36 earning 5th place out of 160 athletes. This accomplishment also earned him an all-state achievement. Other runners competing in the State Meet were sophomore Luke WIlliams who finished 39th in 16:47,  Senior Michael Hoffman who finished 59th in 16:59, freshmen Isaac Kolstad who finished 74th in 17:20, freshmen Vaughn Larson who finished 75th in 17:21, Senior Sador Wondeson who finished 76th in 17:22, and Junior Dru Pingale who took 102nd place.

The Girls' Swim and Dive team placed 5th out of 7 teams at the 2021 Section 4AA meet. Leading the team was sophomore Lucy Borofka who placed 4th in the 50 Freestyle and 5th in the 100 Freestyle. Senior Gianna Mcleod placed 4th out of 19 divers at Sections, advancing her to the MSHSL Swimming and Diving Championship. There, Gianna placed 31 of out 32 divers. Read the White Bear Press article about the team here. 

The White Bear Lake Area Educational Foundation awarded 31 teachers with the 2021-22 Brosious Teaching Grant, including Transition Education Teacher Jessie Prissel (pictured below). The purpose of the Brosious Teaching Grant is to enhance the rigor of the curriculum or instruction within the school district.

A White Bear Lake Area High School grad is heading into space next year! Josh Cassada, '91, will captain SpaceX crew five to the International Space Station in September, 2022.  Read the White Bear Press article about this impressive feat here. 


At Normandy Park Education Center, members of the community enjoyed a Veterans Day program to honor those who have served and are serving our country. Photographer Jay Grammond gave a detailed presentation of different veteran memorials he has visited throughout Minnesota, through shared stories and photos he has taken. This event was featured in a recent video here. 

All students at Vadnais Heights Elementary took time to honor Veterans Day. Students gathered around the flagpole and discussed the meaning of Veterans Day and what the colors on the flag represent. Several 5th graders also sang a song while cub scouts raised the flag. See this program come to life in a video here. 

Three Central Middle School seventh graders were recently named winners in the VFW's Patriot's Pen essay contest. Essays written by Amelia Storelee, Charlie Stepnick and Addison Andrekus are advancing to the district level in this annual contest. The essay theme this year is: How Can I Be a Good American? District students have a long track record of participating in this community activity, and of having their essays fare well in the contest.

Important Reminder

Even though free meals are available to all for this school year, it is still very important that families who may qualify for free or reduced-price meals complete the meal application as soon as possible. The meal applications not only qualify your family for free meal benefits, but also provide additional benefits that may include discounts for: internet access, college application fees, sports/activities fees, and AP test registration fees. Find a flyer that describes the many benefits to completing the Application for Educational Benefits here. Contact the Nutrition Services Department at or 651-407-7524 with any questions.

screenshot of Application for Educational Benefits flyer

 Activities Updates

The Boys' Cross Country team finished 10th out of 16 teams at the MSHSL Boys Cross Country Championships. Senior Ernie Mattson finished in 5th place of our 160 athletes. Read their article here. The Girls' Swim and Dive team finished 5th out of 7 teams at the Section 4AA meet. Leading the team was sophomore Lucy Borofka who placed 4th in the 50 Free and 5th in the 100 Free. Senior diver Gianna Mcleod placed 31 at the MSHSL Swimming and Diving Championships. Read their article here. The Girls' Hockey team defeated Mahtomedi 4-1 in their season opener. Read their article here. The Cheerleading Team will host a kids clinic on December 3. This is open to all students in grades K-5. Please visit and click on "Youth Clinics" for more information.

Along with season passes and punch cards, the WBLAHS Activities office is now offering digital ticketing to all regular season, home athletic events. Information is available 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.

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