By Deanna Wakkinen, I-O Reporter
The October school board meeting had a great kick off with student recognitions for student of the month. The room was filled to the brim with three generations of family there to support the five students from the four schools.
Kendall Griggs introduced the high school honoree, Kara Bandow. Griggs cited multiple teachers with comments from Tammy Jones stating that Bandow is an “excellent role model” that exhibits “kindness to others”.
Carol Brownell presented the Utterback Middle School students of the month who are Shane Larson and Jenna Rodriguez. Jones commented that Larson is “so focused” and “does not make excuses”. Craig Barringer noted that Rodriguez has an “internal drive” while Monica Tomayer commented on her “heart of gold”. Both UMS students of the month honorees are National Junior Honor Society members.
Val Kellogg presented with Madeline Crisco representing Prairie View School. Crisco is a fifth grader who is a “gem to have in class” according to Kellogg.
Linda Garnett presented a very enthusiastic and excited Lakota Becker as the Meadowlark student of the month. Garnett mentioned Becker’s “ever present smile” as one of her great characteristics.
Student council presentations were next with the absence of an UMS representative because elections were still ongoing. Amber Stenson reported for the high school stating that they were mostly working on homecoming and have had a great turn out with school spirit. Stenson noted that the pep rally has moved to Friday and that they were excited to invite all schools to the rally. The high school is gearing up for Breast Cancer Awareness week and Red Ribbon week this month.
Staff presentations came next with Ken Larson introducing Cindy Boles who has been in the health and wellness field for 12 years. Boles stated that she helps students with depression, anxiety, gives them support during the bumps in the road and helps with defiant disorders. Boles is with Alticare, an outside agency to help counsel students in need.
Greg Jensen gave appreciation to Samantha Johnson, who is soon to be an Orcutt, for her second year with the Conrad school district.
Barringer introduced Mary Behr who helps with preschool and K-2 specialized students and the Special Ed resource program. He also noted Tiffany Riley, who also works with Alticare. Riley works within the schools to counsel students.
Chairman Jan Carter made note of Lynn Utterback’s absence as he deals with an ill family member.
Phil Springer presented a fund raiser idea to the board. His Science Bowl team would like to sell pizza made by Coach’s Corner. Springer’s concern was that it might overwhelm residents with the Spanish Club already distributing a frozen version. The board decided that with how small both clubs are, only about 10 members total, there was no reason for both clubs to not sell pizza. Springer hopes to raise between $700 and $800 for the Science Bowl state competition. Conrad has placed as high as third in previous years.
Principal reports, with Barringer starting, came next. He first noted the amount of hours the Conrad school district attends school versus the state requirements. He later requested five early out days that were allowable based on the amount of extra hours student will attend this year. The reason for these early outs include tournaments being hosted by the high school and multiple holidays.
Barringer also showed that last year’s Title One funds were used to purchase primary tests for kindergarten through second grades. These are the MAP, Measuring Academic Progress, tests that have previously only been taken by third through tenth graders.
Barringer noted other events, such as, Debby Perry organizing a new student luncheon, which was a success. He showed that magazine sales were now completed and that only about half of their normal average was sold. They will still receive around $5,200. He was also excited for Project Pals to start this week.
Prairie View Principal Jensen gave his presentation next. He was satisfied with a couple of very worthwhile field trips this past month. The fourth graders enjoyed going to the First People’s Buffalo Jump, but not all enjoyed the three and a half mile hike they endured. The fifth graders went to The Walk of the Cedars in West Glacier. They met park rangers and were guided on a tour. They most enjoyed riding in a cruiser with Byron Carter, who is in his 12th year with the Conrad School district.
Jim Carroll, transportation director, later presented a great list with all of the bus drivers and their history with our district. Nine drivers have been with us for 10 years or more, whether as substitutes or activity drivers.
Jenson noted that the Transportation Museum did an excellent job presenting their exhibits to classes with emphasis on the NASA exhibit. He said that the fire department also came to the school for Fire Prevention Week.
Prairie View is gearing up for Red Ribbon week and their annual Fall Harvest Celebration. They also plan an annual meal for veterans on Nov. 11. Kim Hofstad organizes the meal and has so far hosted a breakfast and a lunch.
Larson filled everyone in on the happenings at the high school. FCCLA had a district meeting and Jones did great during her first year. The College Fair went well with Debbie Ostertag and Larson in attendance. Training was held during a Sept. 29 early out which emphasized on goal setting and Infinite Campus. Cheerleading try-outs resulted in 10 cheerleaders.
Larson gave more updates on Homecoming.
Larson presented two ideas that had been brought up to him. The first, which was approved by the board, is a donor recognition board from the Dollars for Scholars. Dede Brown is heading the project. This board will stand in the vicinity of seven feet tall and will be constructed from the hardwood of the old gym floor. It will also include LED lights and a digital picture frame. Dollars for Scholars will be in charge of the upkeep.
Rick Kronebusch was another person to approach Larson with the idea of installing a trophy case for “Shelby to look at” every time they enter our facility. The case would be in the 21 foot range and include lights. Kronebusch Electric and Tom Durnell would be involved in the installation and it would all be donated. The approval of this project will be declared after plans are viewed. The trophy case and the donor board will be placed in the commons.
The third idea to be donated to the high school is a plaque honoring the members of the Conrad Community Education Fund. This “plaque” will be seven feet wide and sit above some existing book shelves in the entry of the commons from the library. The plan for this design will also be reviewed before a final decision is made by the board.
The high school is gearing up for All State band and choir in Missoula as well as Red Ribbon Week and three separate volleyball tournaments, two of which CHS is hosting. The fall concert is scheduled for Nov. 2.
Carol Jones stressed her short term goal plans and her desire to incorporate two new committees to accomplish them.