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Herald JournalHerald Journal, April 25, 2005

Lester school board looks at changing election year

By Ryan Gueningsman
Staff Writer

Looking at something the Glencoe-Silver Lake School District recently did, the Lester Prairie School Board discussed changing its elections from odd years to even years, to coincide with the general elections at its meeting last Monday.

Lester Prairie Schools Superintendent Joe Miller said there are advantages to changing it, as well as advantages to leaving things the way they currently are.

Should the district decide to change its election year, this would result in a cost savings to the district because it would not have to get its own election judges or print its own ballots.

Miller sees an advantage to keeping the school district elections separate from the general elections because if it’s separate, it becomes a more “important” election, rather than getting lost in the jumble of everything else that may appear on a ballot.

If the board would decide to change its election year, all of hte current board members would remain on the board for another year.

Responding to crisis

In light of the recent death of a Lester Prairie High School senior, Miller expressed appreciation for the amount of support that was received by the administration, staff, and local authorities.

He said the day the student died, the administration began meeting with staff.

“They did a good job of preparing for what we knew were going to be some tough times,” Miller said. The school made the students aware that several members of local clergy, as well as a representative from the Hutchinson Community Hospital were available to speak to students.

Miller said the main goal of the administration was to provide the support needed for students, and at the same time, provide schooling, and keep things as routine as possible.

Principal Pam Lukens commended the students who participated in the play last weekend, noting it “allowed people to laugh during that week.”

Coaching to change lives

Lester Prairie Schools teacher and head football coach Joe Scoblic gave a presentation to the board on a program he is involved in called “Coaching to Change Lives.”

The program encourages character building, and shows that the coaches are concerned for the all-around well-being of the students, rather than just the performance on the field or court.

Scoblic said he is exploring ideas for community service projects for his team, such as a “pick up Lester Prairie day” and a visit to a local nursing home.

The board appreciated Scoblic’s efforts and encouraged him to work to get other teams and students involved in the program.

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