November 20, 2022
A message of thanks
With Thanksgiving Break rounding out our week in a few days, I want to take a moment to thank our families and community members for the many gifts you bring to the table in support of our students and staff members. Whether you're in the stands at activities, in the classroom as a volunteer, or in the community showcasing Bear pride, your efforts are greatly appreciated.
Dr. Wayne Kazmierczak
In Photos: Exciting Opportunities
Birch Lake Elementary students have a new space to play together outside. To complete his Eagle Scout project, a local Boy Scout built a brand new sandbox with support from the PTA. Students love their new playground addition, which can been seen in a recent video issue of "The Week in 62.4 Seconds".
The White Bear Lake autonomous vehicle, Bear Tracks, drove into the White Bear Lake Are High School - South Campus parking lot. Our high school students are some of the first in the state to incorporate the vehicle into our curriculum. The lesson was featured in this video. Students were able to ride Bear Tracks around the building and learned about the technology behind the vehicle.
North Campus art students are tackling a new project. They are painting and drawing self-portraits which can been seen in this video. Students took photos of themselves to show their personalities and display the skill of foreshortening which they will bring to life in their creations.
Professional trombone quartet, The Paper Clips, visited third, fourth and fifth grade music classes at Oneka Elementary last week. One of the musicians, Chris Allen (pictured far left) is a 2010 White Bear Lake Area High School grad. The group played several songs for students, demonstrated different instruments in the trombone family and how to play them. Watch the musical experience come to life in a recent video issue of "The Week in 62.4 Seconds".
The WBLAHS Theatre Department recently wrapped up two weekends packed with performances of its Fall Musical: Chicago. The energetic and thrilling show filled with razzle-dazzle was highlighted in the White Bear Press.
At Central Middle School, students gathered in the auditorium to learn about Veterans Day. During the program, they sang the national anthem and listened to several Veterans who shared their experiences and answered questions. Their program was highlighted in this video. At the end of the program, Major Barry Henriksen announced the winners of the Central Level of the VFW Patriot's Pen Essay Contest. The three winners, Zoe Siverson, Brigid McVeigh and Sadie Blauer, will move on to the District Level of the contest.
Students at Vadnais Heights Elementary also took time to honor Veterans Day. The entire school gathered around the flagpole on November 11. Students learned what the red, white and blue colors on the flag represent. Several students also invited their families members who served or are currently serving our country, to be recognized and honored.
The district's Senior Center honored those who served our country. Members of the VFW and Auxiliary Members of Post 1782 lead a group in remembering and honoring veterans from past wars and more present deployments.
Lakeaires Elementary Extended Day students celebrated Veterans Day by wearing red, white and blue. They created a thank you sign, complete with candy, which they all signed. Lakeaires Extended Day does this activity every year for the White Bear Lake VFW Post 1782.
In The Spotlight
Six high school student-athletes took part in National Signing Day at South Campus. This exciting event is the first day when student-athletes can officially commit to an NCAA Division I or Division II school that has offered them a scholarship to play for a sports team. The six students who signed letters of intent are:
- Chloe Barber - Softball, Wichita State
- Tim Boncher - Baseball, University of Minnesota-Crookston
- Wyatt Hawks - Basketball, St. Cloud State University
- Jack Janicki - Basketball, University of Wisconsin-Madison
- Sydney Johnson - Soccer, Mankato State University
- Jack Setterlund - Baseball, Concordia University
The district's Adapted Soccer team ended their season in playoffs last week, going into the contest as a 3rd seed but losing to North-Tartan. The White Bear Lake Unified Special Olympics team participated in the State Bowling Tournament last weekend.
Central Middle Schoolers were sent to Donut Detention last week. Staff nominated students in each grade who demonstrated Bears' Essentials and went above and beyond during the first quarter by showing kindness, positivity, perseverance and selflessness. Students were called down to the commons area to receive a message from the staff member who nominated them and enjoy a donut together!
WBLAHS '91 grad Josh Cassada took his first space walk as a member of NASA's SpaceX Crew-5, which boarded the International Space Station in September. The space walk was streamed live on NASA's youtube channel.
District voters approved the district’s Capital Projects Levy Renewal request on the November 8th ballot. We are grateful for this renewed vote of confidence and support in our schools, our staff, and our students. Thank you to everyone who took time to learn about the levy renewal, share information with others and go to the polls. The full press release can be found here.
Thank you to the community members who stopped by for an informal chat during last week’s “Coffee with Dr. K” event. The event was highlighted in this video. These periodic get-togethers are great opportunities to sit down and discuss important district and community-related topics. Join us for similar events later this school year; from 12-1 p.m. on Wed., February 8 and 4-5 p.m. on Tues., May 2 in the meeting room of the downtown White Bear Lake Caribou Coffee.
Name recommendations are currently being accepted for consideration related to Sunrise Park Middle School, which will close its doors on Cedar Avenue and be relocated to the McKnight Road site that was once home to Mariner High School and is currently home to WBLAHS - South Campus. Recommendations will be accepted through Nov. 28. Find the submittal form here.
WBLAHS hockey coach A.L. Wegwerth recently published a book, “I'm Going to Be a Hockey Star,” about a hockey player who arrives at his first hockey practice and starts to imagine his life as a hockey star. The White Bear Press recently interviewed the author about the book, where to find it and her future plans.
White Bear grad Dan Jones was recently named creative director for the White Bear Lake Area Historical Society. Read the full White Bear Press article about his new position here.
The Girls Swim & Dive Team wrapped up their season with a fifth place finish at the Section 4AA meet. Several swimmers & one diver qualified in the top 16 and top 8. Six WBLAHS student-athletes signed letters of intent during National Signing Day on Nov. 9. The White Bear Lake Unified Special Olympics Team participated in the State Bowling Tournament last weekend.
Registration for Winter Sports is open on SmartSchoolK12. If you need help with registration, please email Tomilee Reinhardt in the high school Activities Office or call 651-773-6206. Your student MUST have an updated physical on file with the school district before they will be able to register for a winter sport. Click Here for information on Winter High School Team Tryouts or Winter Team First Week of Practice, or search the High School Activities page on the District Website for the link.
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).
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.
Please contact the Communications Department (651-407-7695) to submit Student News for inclusion in future publications.
The Week in 62.4 Seconds
School Board News
School Board Student Recognition
During the November 14 School Board regular meeting, School Board members recognized students who represented the district at state-level contests in Girls' Soccer and in Boys' and Girls' Cross Country. The Cheerleading Team was also recognized for earning a spot in a National competition that will take place in February. Watch the Student Recognition video here.
Upcoming School Board Meetings
Past Meeting Highlights
Nov. 14 Regular Session
Oct. 24 Work Session
Oct. 10 Regular Session
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.
A revised 2022-23 Academic Calendar was approved at the July 11, 2022 School Board meeting.
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.