As we prepare to welcome back students for the 2022-23 school year, families, staff and community members are invited to share their back-to-school pictures (along with why they are excited for the school year) on Facebook with the #BackToSchoolBears hashtag for a chance at being featured in the next Community e-Newsletter!
In Photos: Creative Minds
Off to a Great Start
While we are having a wonderful last few days of summer vacation, we are also looking forward to a terrific 2022-23 school year! The district-wide Back to School page on the district and school websites provides easy-to-access information, including classroom supply lists, calendars, busing, Applications for Educational Benefits information, attendance maps and how to take part in our Back to School Extravaganza. Families can also learn about our new Student Information System, ParentVUE by Synergy, that supports student demographics, schedules, attendance, grades and more. ParentVUE is replacing Skyward Family Access and is being used for the 2022-23 Online Annual Family Update.
The District welcomed dozens of new staff members last week for orientation. The new "Bears" were given the opportunity to make connections before the school year starts through an ice cream social, interactive sessions and instructional seminars. They also posed for the traditional White Bear Rec T-Shirt group photo and practiced giving a mighty "Go Bears!"
We are excited to welcome staff and students back into our buildings for the 2022-23 school year. Recently students, families, district staff and community members were given a first peek at the new North Star Elementary school building during two open house events. The school, located in Hugo, was built as part of the district-wide comprehensive facilities plan which was made possible through the community’s support of the 2019 bond referendum. You can follow along in the district’s Building Our Future Facilities Process to see all the projects happening right now, what's been completed and the projects still to come.
The White Bear Press recently covered White Bear Lake Area Schools' updated Strategic Plan, with four new strategies developed by a team of community and district representatives. Learn more about our updated Strategic Plan here.
Staff leaders from our middle and high schools took part in a leadership retreat this summer. Some of their activities included team building exercises such as creating a structure with tape and noodles and group discussions on a variety of topics.
Trying Something New
White Bear Lake Area Schools piloted a Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) Freedom School this summer. During the six week program, students explored how they can make a difference through literacy and education, social action and community engagement. Some of the CDF Freedom School activities included art projects, taking field trips to museums, and listening to weekly guest readers, which included school board member Marge Newmaster.
Middle School students learned the art of woodburning during a Community Ed class. Students were provided lessons on safety, how to use the pyrography pen, how to switch tools and different techniques to create some amazing designs.
WBLAHS Career Pathways students took part in various camps and internship programs this summer in a variety of trade industries including automotive, manufacturing, electrical and landscaping. The district's Career Pathways Employer Engagement Breakfast celebrated student triumphs during the 2021-22 school year. Sponsors of the program also learned about new ways they can get involved for the upcoming 2022-23 school year.
Families and community members are invited to mark their calendars and watch for ticket information to be made available later this fall for the White Bear Lake Area High School Fall Musical "Chicago", which will be performed November 11 & 12 and November 17-19. Students can audition for the musical September 13 and 14 at the North Campus theatre. Find more information about audition material, callbacks, and show dates here.
A White Bear Lake Community Services & Recreation softball team, the Hugo Hurricanes, had a big weekend! They played five games in one day and took home the first place trophy at the Girls 12 & Under State Championship. The White Bear Press featured the team in an article here. This team has been playing in our program since second grade. Registration is currently open for fall rec soccer and volleyball. Rec basketball registration opens September first. Community Services and Recreation provides a variety of programs and activities during the fall. Find more information here.
WBLAHS '91 grad Josh Cassada is a member of NASA's SpaceX Crew-5, which is preparing for a mission to the International Space Station. Cassada and his team were recently interviewed about their upcoming launch, which is scheduled for no earlier than September 29. Watch the full interview here.
The White Bear Press recently highlighted 2022 grad Jordyn Meyer for her success on the softball field and in the figure skating rink. Meyer plans to play Division I softball at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. Read more about her impressive accomplishments in this article.
WBLAHS 2013 grad Austin Luecke was recently seen on ESPN2 while competing in the US Open for the World Axe Throwing League. Luecke reached the final four among 64 throwers. The White Bear Press highlighted his achievements in this article.
White Bear Lake Area High School's Jack Janicki was highlighted on Sports Illustrated's FanNation for being added to the University of Wisconsin men's basketball 2023 class as a preferred walk-on. Read the full article and watch a video of Janicki practicing here.
The White Bear Press featured several water skiers including White Bear grad Caroline Grubs, who placed first in the swivel skiing category during the Midwest Regional Show Ski Tournament in Albert Lea, Minnesota. Grubs is also a member of the USA Water Ski Show Team.
Extended Day staff and students at Oneka Elementary held their 16th annual food drive as part of their summertime service activity. They donated 487.8 pounds of food plus a donation of $100 to the Hugo Food Shelf. The staff lost a competition between students to see who could gather more donations which resulted in several staff members getting "pied in the face".
It was a successful night of community support during the Bear's Night Out Community Picnic. Those who attended the event enjoyed an assortment of games, crafts, food and the opportunity to interact with local law enforcement officers.
Bear a Bear!
Do you want to be a Bear and make a difference for kids in your community? The White Bear Lake Area School district is hiring for a variety of positions, offering both school-day and out-of-school-time hours. Full and part-time options are available. Visit the employment opportunities page on the district's website to learn more.
This year White Bear Lake Area High School, along with every school in the Suburban East Conference (SEC) is going to online-only ticket sales for all varsity sporting events. All conference schools have partnered with Hometown Ticketing to make it easier for spectators. The easiest way to access our online tickets is by downloading the Hometown Ticketing App or you can access and purchase tickets to our home events by clicking here. An alternate way to view home games is by purchasing adult and/or student pass(es). Please fill out the Google Form here, then you can stop by South Campus to pay for and pick up your passes. All information regarding the passes is included in the Google Form.
Senior community members (age 65+) who live in the District are invited to participate in the Senior Activities Pass program and enjoy complimentary admission to most school activities. Find out how to receive your free pass here.
The Girls Tennis Team is 2-0 after defeating Hill-Murray 5-2 in their season opener. Find highlights from the match here. They also recently beat Simley 5-2 Find those highlights here.
Please contact the Communications Department (651-407-7695) to submit Student News for inclusion in future publications.
School Board News
Upcoming School Board Meetings
At the November 13, 2023 School Board Regular Meeting, the School Board approved the following calendars:
- 2024-25 Academic Calendar
- 2025-26 Academic Calendar
At the February 13, 2023 School Board Regular Meeting, the White Bear Lake Area School Board approved a committee’s recommendation to change the name of Sunrise Park Middle School when it moves from the Sunrise Park neighborhood to the current White Bear Lake Area High School - South Campus building in the fall of 2024. The new name, Mariner Middle School, is a nod to the District’s past.
At the August 8, 2022 School Board meeting, the Board heard an update of the District's Strategic Planning process and approved four updated strategies.
At the March 28, 2022 School Board Work Session, the White Bear Lake Area School Board unanimously approved a Resolution Supporting Commitment to Equity and Inclusion.
The district’s plan for changed attendance boundaries was approved at the Feb. 14, 2022 Regular School Board Meeting.
At its August 12 regular meeting, the White Bear Lake Area School Board approved two purchase agreements for land in Hugo that recently became available.