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Red Wing School Board briefs

Middle school could get flexible scheduling

Twin Bluff Middle School teachers would get more flexibility with class time and more time to meet with each other under a new schedule that Principal Chris Palmatier proposed to the board Monday.

The schedule would have students divided into groups of about 100. Those groups would then rotate between four teachers each day. This means that teachers would have groups of about 25 students at a time.

Those teachers would work together to make sure student objectives and expectations are consistent. The teachers would be allowed common prep times every day. This would allow time for collaborative lesson planning, meeting with parents and students or coordination of assignments.

The proposed flexible block schedule would allow teachers to choose class periods of either 45 or 90 minutes, depending on their needs and lesson plans. They would work with their group's other three teachers to coordinate this.

In addition, the schedule includes something called "What I Need" time, which is a half-hour every day that can be used for enrichment, remediation, independent reading and advisory, among other things.

"I feel this is a much better way to work with our students," Palmatier said. He added that it would make schedules more consistent across fifth, sixth and seventh grades.

Palmatier said he would return in the fall with more information about the schedule and how it might affect staffing.

Food service prices set for 2013-14

The board approved new food service prices for the 2013-14 school year. Elementary full-priced breakfasts will go up 10 cents to $1.55; lunches will go up 5 cents to $2.35. Middles school full-priced lunches will go up 5 cents to $2.40. High school full-priced lunches will go up 5 cents to $2.55. All adult lunches will go up 10 cents. Milk prices will remain steady.

Finance Director Brad Johnson said that the district typically raises food prices every two years; this year's increases fall on that schedule. He added that with new federal school food guidelines, the district's cost per meal is up 20 cents over this year.

District to hire aquatics director

The board voted 5-0 to approve the hiring of an aquatics director/head swim coach.

Activities Director Matt Schultz said that the new position will combine duties currently split up between three hourly-wage employees. It would cover physical education aquatics, head swim coach and certified pool operator.

It would also provide consistency for the swimming program.

The aquatics director would work from Aug. 1 to April 1, Schultz said.

"Right now, we have had five or six swim coaches in five years," Schutlz said.

The aquatics director would be considered a program supervisor. The salary range would be between $30,000 and $48,000 a year. He hopes to have the position filled before the 2013-14 school year.

As a result of the new position, the board voted to eliminate a current pool coordinator/lifeguard position. As a result, they terminated the employment of Pat Kiczula effective at the end of the school year.

In other news ...

• The board voted 5-0 to make Red Wing Public Schools an official member of the Big Nine Conference. It also authorized the district to submit necessary paperwork related to inclusion in the conference.

• The board voted to adjust the 2012-13 school calendar from 175 instruction days to 171 instruction days. The reduction was due to snow days.

• The board approved a memorandum of agreement with the Red Wing Education Support Personnel Association that will allow employees to trade two days of unused personal time for their daily rate of pay at the end of this school year. The MOA is necessary because the district is still negotiating with the group for their 2011-13 contacts, Supt. Karsten Anderson said.

Personnel changes

The board approved the following personnel changes:

New hires: Caleb Rosenow, substitute van driver for RWHS, effective May 6; Mitchell Paulson, counselor at RWHS, effective Aug. 24.

Extended leave: Susan Moore, student supervisor at TMBS, effective May 2 through June 15.

Reassignment: Lynnette Nadeau, paraprofessional at RWHS, effective April 29; Cameron Forsberg, paraprofessional at TBMS, effective April 29; Carrie Hansen, special education teacher at TBMS, effective 2013-14 school year.

Recall from unrequested leave of absence: Karin Meyer, special education teacher at Colvill Family Center.

Resignation: Sarah Gorski, first-grade teacher at Sunnyside, effective June 7.

Meeting watch

Monday's meeting lasted about one hour and 40 minutes. Board members Mark Ryan and Janie Farrar were absent. Board member Steve Anderson left about 10 minutes early.

- Compiled by Sarah Gorvin, staff writer