An otherwise workaday session of the Wauseon Board of Education on Monday was highlighted by a poignant tribute to the school district’s former therapy dog.
Middle School Principal Joe Friess, who could not attend the meeting, contributed a photo montage of Kramer, a Labradoodle that served the district’s students for 10 years. Kramer died of throat and tongue cancer in June at age 12. He was based at the middle school and lived with Friess.
The images of Kramer with students and during visits to residents at Fulton Manor in Wauseon were accompanied by “Terry’s Song,” a Bruce Springsteen song dedicated to a longtime friend who passed away. The lyrics contained a repeated refrain, “When they built you, brother, they broke the mold.”
The school board approved a motion to accept a $710 donation from Haas Door and its employees for the Wauseon Elementary School food pantry. The board also passed a motion to approve a “then and now” certificate for HVAC repairs by Earl Mechanical Services for $4,976.42.
In other business, a motion was approved to name Todd Bingham, Kevin Kreiner, and Chris Zirkle as volunteer archery coaches, and Alyssa Russell as a student pool worker, for the 2017-18 school year.
Board members also approved a motion to accept new and revised polices for various school district areas, as set forth by NEOLA, an educational consulting firm: College Credit Plus Program; employment of substitute educational aides; personal communication devices; attendance; use of medications; drug prevention; amenities for participants at meetings and other occasions; recognition; disposition of real property/personal property; bus driver certification; and the Business Advisory Council.
In building reports:
• Primary School Principal Blake Young said in October students will concentrate on fire safety. They have met with Wauseon firefighters to learn safety skills, and will attend a fire safety assembly sponsored by the National Fire Safety Council on Friday, Nov. 3.
“We have a great fire department here in Wauseon. Those guys are always willing to come over and talk with students,” Young told the school board.
Cabe Cordy, of Cordy Insurance in Wauseon, will donate six fire ladders and two fire extinguishers, to be raffled off among first graders.
Young said this Friday the school will hold its annual Fall Fest featuring both inside and outside activities. High school art and FFA high school students will assist.
He also said each month the school will highlight a character trait, and one student from each classroom will be selected as an example and receive a certificate.
Iowa testing will be held Oct. 30-Nov. 3.
• The elementary school/primary school United Way after school grant allows for continued activities two days per week, according to WES Principal Theresa Vietmeier.
Teachers are using data from STAR and achievement scores and classroom and trend data to determine specific interventions for specific academic skill sets.
Fifth graders will complete Cognitive Aptitude and IOWA testing to determine whether any qualify for gifted services.
The teaching staff visited local businesses to make school and community connections.
Upcoming activities include the fourth grade musical on Oct. 17 and Oct. 19, and third grade AIR testing Oct. 25-26.
• At the Middle School, parent-teacher conferences are scheduled Nov. 16 and Nov. 20.
The first day for the 21st Century Grant program is Oct. 23.
Friday, Oct. 13, is Wauseon Indian Spirit Day. Also, eighth grade students will dress as characters from the book “The Outsiders” to mark the end of that unit.
Parents are reminded that Friday is also the last week of the grading period. Grades can be checked online. They will only be printed out for parents who specifically request it.
• High School Principal Keith Leatherman reported that pre-ACT sessions for sophomores will be administered Oct. 18. The sessions give them an estimated score on how well they might achieve on the ACT test.
An ACT writing field test was given to seniors, juniors, and sophomores who are in English honor courses. Leatherman said the testing is “a way to get some feedback and make some improvements there.”
Upcoming events include: Fall Choir Concert, Oct. 15; senior-parents financial aid meeting, Oct. 16; teacher in-service, Oct. 27; fall Bloodmobile, Oct. 30; parent-teacher conferences, Nov. 16 and Nov. 20; fall play, Nov. 17-19.
The school board entered into executive session to discuss employment of personnel. No action was taken.
Reach David J. Coehrs at 419-335-2010.