October 5 Update

Published on Wednesday, 30 November -0001 00:00
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Mark Messman,

Superintendent,

Eden Valley-Watkins Schools

Building Project:

We had a very productive early October construction meeting with the contractors, managers, and vendors. The Fine Arts staff continues to work with administration and vendors on plans and placements of electronics and lighting. The masonry crew will be wrapping up with some interior block walls in the mechanical rooms of the gymnasium, and then cleaning and packing up for their next project. Interior work continues with the office and bathroom walls and ductwork. Due to the placement of some plumbing cleanouts, we had a minor delay in pouring the gymnasium floor. We plan to pour and heat the gymnasium floor during the week of Oct. 8. The roofing phase is complete and the perimeter will be capped when the lobby is finished.

Please stop in for a visit with your questions and comments, and be sure to exercise caution when you're in the proximity of the construction zone.

Target Take Charge of Education:

Target Stores are presently providing an excellent opportunity to financially support Eden Valley-Watkins Schools. According to the "Take Charge of Education" program, families and friends who use their Target Visa, Target Credit Card, or Target Debit Card will have a portion of their sale purchases donated to school. Specifically, Target will donate 1 percent of your REDcard purchases made at Target stores or at Target.com. Money earned will be used to subsidize student activities. Please consider supporting this program and Eden Valley-Watkins Schools.

Homecoming:

Homecoming activities took place from Sept. 30-Oct. 5. Congratulations to our Homecoming King and Queen, Zach Blonigen and Kaylee Forcier. Other members of the royal court included Brianna Kalahar, Austin Berg, Kayla Kuechle, Alex Geislinger, Baylee Lahr, Mitch Lease, Brianna Plantenberg, and Cole Stang.

The annual parade took place on Friday, Oct. 5, and began at the Eden Valley Elementary School and ran through town with a final destination at the Secondary School. I'd like to commend the administrative team, EV-W staff and students, and all of our advisors for their involvement and energy supporting our school activities.

Quote of the Week:

"Human growth and development do not happen in a zone of comfort. Learning requires stretching beyond what you already know, and that is, by nature, uncomfortable."

-Bill Treasurer

Great Schools Begin at the Ballot Box:

The growing dependence on voter-approved school levies for funding basic educational opportunities causes alarming disparity among school districts. Throughout this political season, be sure to ask our politicians how they plan to correct the disparity of opportunity that is based merely on a child's zip code. Things you should know:

• Today, 90 percent of school districts have levies. In 1990, only 47 percent had levies and, back then, they were called excess levies used to provide "extras". Now levies are called operating referendums as this revenue is critical to funding basic educational opportunities.

• The problem with school levies is the cost to the local taxpayer for a levy dollar is based on the individual property wealth of each district, which varies greatly around the state. Without significant commercial or industrial development to broaden the tax base, the cost of a school levy can be very high for local residents.

• Equalization, which is state aid that makes voter approved school levies more affordable for citizens in low property wealth districts has eroded since its inception in 1993.

• The most effective way to reduce the reliance on the referendum levy is adequate and consistent state funding of the general education formula and the special education formula.

• The general education basic formula, which is the per pupil dollar amount that comes from the state, has lagged behind inflation for the past two decades. The gap is over $2,200 per pupil. This is how much less we spend on today's students compared with the children in our schools in the early 1990's.

Ask your politicians to increase the equalization factors so that the local taxpayer cost for a school levy dollar is the same across the state.

Be informed... be engaged... Vote!

Senior of the Week:

The EV-W School District would like to recognize Austin Pelkey, son of Greg and Angie Pelkey. Austin is a well-rounded student/athlete and demonstrates many quality characteristics in the classroom, and on the field, track, and court. He is a three sport athlete and was a State entrant during the 2012 track season. Austin is well respected by his classmates and teachers, and was recognized as the 2012 Sno Daze Prince. Congratulations!