Lindquist named activities director
By Ryan Gueningsman
DELANO, MN Delano Public Schools lost an activities director but gained an assistant middle school principal with Josef Haas being hired for the administrative position.
Long-time middle school principal David Lindeman announced his retirement last month. Haas will move from the activities office to the middle school office, taking over the assistant middle school principal position immediately.
“It’ll be a good thing in the middle school,” said Delano Public Schools Superintendent Dr. John Sweet.
Later in the week, Sweet announced that long-time teacher Mike Lindquist was named as the activities director for Delano Schools.
“Lindquist is uniquely qualified for this position,” Sweet said. “He has 25 years of teaching and coaching experience, 23 years at Delano Middle School. His coaching experience and experience in the visual arts gives him a broad perspective of the total activities program, which doesn’t just include athletics.”
In addition to Lindquist’s duties with the school district, he has been an active member of the community as a member of the parks and recreation commission, Downtown Revitalization Task Force, Highway 12 Bridge and Aesthetics Task Force, and other projects.
“He will continue as head girls’ soccer coach for the upcoming season only,” Sweet added. “The district will be looking for a new girls’ soccer coach for next year and a head boys’ track coach for the coming season.”
Financial reports given to school board
In her report to the board, Business Manager Mary Reeder informed the board that state aid payments of $1.2 million are being delayed, beginning Sept. 3.
Sweet explained the state does this because it could affect its bond rating, and said these delays have forced some districts to have to borrow funds. He said Delano should be able to handle the delays without having to borrow.
“We’re facing unprecedented financial times,” Sweet said, adding he is unsure exactly how the board is going to navigate through that in the next couple years.
“People need to understand that it’s not going to be easy,” he added.
School Board Chairman Peter Brasket suggested setting a board workshop to discuss state aid shifts and also funding moving toward the next biennium.
Sweet also noted a Minnesota Department of Education summer workshop for superintendents coming up that will include topics of changes needed to survive in the current economy.
Program review looks at test scores
Delano High School Assistant Principal Joe Vieau presented a summary of testing results from the schools in the program review portion of the meeting.
He reviewed the elementary, middle, and high school math and reading scores, and gave a GRAD summary, which included the math passage rate of 75 percent, reading rate of 87.6 percent, and writing at 98.5 percent.
Q-Comp goals were also reached in all three buildings, Vieau noted, and also touched on MCA-II science scores. All three grade levels tested exceeded state percentages by at least 8 percentage points.
Odds and ends
In other business, the board:
• reviewed three plans being considered for adding additional ice surface to the Delano Area Sports Arena (DASA), as well as parking.
Crow River Youth Hockey Association Board Member Jim Kruse said the second sheet of ice will be 65x140 feet, which is designed to be used year-round. He said it is hoped the project can be completed within two years.
• approved the hiring of Sarah Bingea and Damon Clare as part-time summer Tiger Activity Center strength and conditioning instructors.
• approved 2010-2012 contracts for Tiger Activity Center/Recreation Coordinator Sarah Farniok and Community Education Director Diane Johnson.
• reviewed bids received for bread and milk for 2010-11, accepting a bid from Kemps for milk, and Sara Lee Baking Group for bread.
• noted the school board candidate filing dates are Tuesday, Aug. 3 through Tuesday, Aug. 17 (see related story).
• heard from Sweet about problems and complaints at the elementary school regarding odors and air quality.
Resource Training and Solutions detected an odor from the air ducts and recommended cleaning and coating the original duct system. The estimated cost is $60,000, and the work will need to be completed before school begins in September.
The board approved moving forward with the cleaning, and noted payment will come from a balance left from energy-savings projects that have been completed.
It was noted earlier in the meeting that there is about $331,000 left that is being used for energy-savings projects as they are identified.
The original energy savings project involved more than $8 million in improvements.
“This included everything from improved lighting system controls, to plumbing improvements to replacing roofing ($400,000) in connection with unit ventilators ($1.2 million), to rooftop units ($2.9 million),” Sweet said after the meeting.
“Energy Services Group bid all these projects on behalf of the school district and the bids came in under budget, so dollars were left over to take care of other things that were not on the priority list, plus things like the indoor air quality problem at the elementary that have come up since the other work was done,” he added. “I am not sure how we would be able to fund the fix at the elementary if we wouldn’t have had money left over from the larger project.”