STMA takes action regarding ice arena project

By Peg Craig

Contributing Writer

The St. Michael – Albertville School Board met to make decisions about the upcoming construction projects.

The board also recognized student athletes, and heard about Title IX and teacher licensure.

CONSTRUCTION UPDATES

Representatives of the Cities of Albertville and St. Michael and the St. Michael Albertville School District have been meeting to revise their joint powers agreement before an addition with a second sheet of ice is built adjacent to the current ice arena.

Currently each of these entities owns a third of the building and pays a third of the expense. The Arena Board, with equal representation from all three, makes decisions regarding the arena and makes budgeting recommendations which both cities and the school board have to agree on. By contract the City of Albertville manages and schedules the arena.

By state statute the addition to the arena must be totally owned by the school district. Both ice sheets will be regarded as community assets and a new agreement will define how expenses will be divided and decisions will be made. The original ice sheet will still be equally owned and each entity will pay a third of the costs. Common equipment used by both arenas will be owned 1/6 by St. Michael, 1/6 by Albertville and 2/3 by the School District. The new arena board will have two members from each city and three from the school district.

The City of Albertville will manage both arenas. Before the new structure opens the Arena Board will purchase a new Zamboni using capital funds with any additional funds coming in the new ratio. The girls team will return to the local arena and the high school teams will use both sheets after school until 6 p.m. After that both ice sheets will be available for other teams.

In connection with the building project a new refrigeration unit will be purchased to replace the current one which is coming to the end of its expected life. Replacing the unit and connecting it to the new one will be a great savings over probable replacement costs in the future. The School Board agreed to pay a third of the cost of a new unit because it will serve the original ice sheet.

The board has also agreed to have Breitbach Construction Company as its Construction Manager for all the projects associated with the bond referendum. They will assign a representative to oversee the projects and meet regularly with the district staff and the Core Project team. They will manage the various contractors and order the materials needed to complete each part of the projects.

The board began a discussion of having advertising on the scoreboards in the new sports facilities. Other districts have done this and it has allowed them to purchase more expensive scoreboards. After the scoreboards are paid for by the funds from advertising, the advertising revenue can be used for the sports programs.

Superintendent Ann-Marie Foucault said that several area businesses have already expressed interest in buying scoreboard ads. The school board will make a decision at a future meeting.

STUDENT AWARDS

In further matters, two teams took top honors in the state for their sports. The STMA Clay Target League Team competed in the 2017 Trap Shooting Championship in Alexandria, and took first place. They competed against 39 teams and 100 athletes. The team has been competing for six years and includes girls and boys. Board Chairman Drew Scherber congratulated the team and their parents saying, “success does not come easy and is the culmination of hard work, commitment and determination.”

The STMA track and field teams competed at Hamline University at the Class AA track meet and the girls took first place. Anna Keefer competed in the 100 yard dash, the 200 yard dash and set a state record in the long jump. For her accomplishments at the state tournament and during her high school career she was named Gatorade Female Track Athlete of the Year for Minnesota. She has signed a letter of intent to attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill next fall.

The STMA School Board gave recognition to the State Championship AA Track and Field team. Left to right are Izzy Ferrozzo, Sophia Weston, Grace Steffens, Paige Joslyn, Annalise Davis, Anna Tschida, Katelyn Tschida, Anna Keefer, Mia Camp and Emma Frauendienst.

TEACHER LICENSURE AND TITLE IX

In other developments, Doug Birk, Director of Administrative Services, reported on the new Teacher Licensure Law passed recently by the State Legislature. It addresses the teacher shortage in Minnesota by enabling teachers in other states and people in related fields to be able to teach in Minnesota while working toward full licensure. Birk says it will be a non-political system and will create a structure that is “a little more common sense and has more flexibility in dealing with local needs.”

Birk then gave a report on the Title 9 program. The state requires that School Boards receive periodic Title 9 training and Birk has just returned from his training as the Title 9 Coordinator for the district. Title 9 is a federal law, an extension of the Civil Rights Act. It is intended to address “the issue of discrimination or harassment on the basis of your sex or gender as it pertains to any educational program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”

It applies to students and employees. The Title 9 Coordinator is responsible for investigating any allegations of sexual harassment/sexual misconduct and take action to stop, remedy and prevent it.

OTHER NEWS

In other news, Suzanne Gallagher, Administrative Assistant to the Superintendent and secretary to the School Board, will be leaving her position at the end of the month and beginning a similar position with the Fridley School District.

She will have a longer commute but will not have to attend school board meetings.

The STMA School Board gave recognition to the State Championship AA Track and Field team. Left to right are Izzy Ferrozzo, Sophia Weston, Grace Steffens, Paige Joslyn, Annalise Davis, Anna Tschida, Katelyn Tschida, Anna Keefer, Mia Camp and Emma Frauendienst.