NEW RICHLAND-HARTLAND-ELLENDALE-GENEVA AREA

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NRHEG School Board

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THANKS, MONSANTO! — Monsanto presented a $25,000 check to the NRHEG school during the high school pep fest on Friday, October 5. Pictured from left: Paul Cyr, Kevin Wellen, Mike Pruat, Anne Feist, Amanda Inouye, Jennifer Hatton, Rick Schultz, Chris Beyer and Tom Chandler. (Star Eagle photo by Nicole Billing)



By REED WALLER

Staff Writer

The list of donations approved by the NRHEG school board for the month of October topped $40,000. 

Monsanto grant

Topping the list was the $25,000 grant gift from Monsanto.

The Monsanto Grow Community Farm Progress grant was made available to school districts with a choice of taking $10,000 per district, or submitting their district to be nominated by area farmers for a possible $25,000.

The project description states, “NRHEG will use the grant to update science laboratories to state-of-the-art facilities. The district will be acquiring 13 Labquest Interface equipment and sensors that will broaden the scope of scientific investigation in the classrooms. The grant will also be used to purchase two digital microscopes that will be integrated with SMART Boards that are already in use.”

These area farmers made it possible by nominating NRHEG for the grant: Glenn Ausen, Steve Ausen, Aaron Bethke, Glen Bethke, John Bethke, Patricia Belhke, Sam Bethke, Dan Budach, Gary Budach, Kris Budach, Nick Budach, Chad Buendorf, Bill Clayton, Bradley Crumb, Gene Denherder, Matthew Groskreutz, Bradley Hagen, Carlyle Hagen, Charles Hagen, Eugene Hagen, Judith Hagen, Randy Hagen, Troy Hagen, Terry Hanson, Anthony Holmes, Karen Holmes, Renee Holmes, Richard Holmes, Cherol Johnson, Mark Johnson, Bruce Kubicek, Blaine Lewer, Randy Lewer, Tim Lewer, Trevor Lewer, Amanda Malakowsky, David Malakowsky, Marykay Malakowsky, Ralph Malakowsky, Eugene Meyer, Mike Moen, Larry Muff, Tim Nelson, Adryn Peterson, Layne Possin, Lonny Possin, Greg Roesler, Mark Routh, Harlen Schlaak, Loren Schoenrock, Verna Schoenrock, Troy Schue, Darrol Sponberg, David Sponberg, Pauline Sponberg, Todd Stencel, Gerald Stencil, Curt Stenzel, Rebecca Stenzel, Gretchen Supalla, Michale Supalla, Duane Swenson, Lonny Thostenson, Mary Thostenson, Wilfred Thostenson, Pauline Van Nurden, Lane Wacholz, Lynn Wacholz, Tom Wayne, Brian Wencl. 

Ellendale sound system

Last month the NRHEG board agreed to match funds with the NRHEG PTO to purchase a new sound system for the Ellendale Gym, if the PTO managed to come up with $10,000.

The PTO made their goal with the help of contributions of $2,500 from the Hartland Firefighters, $1,000 from the NR Youth Wrestling Club, and $500 from the Geneva Fire Department, among others.

It is hoped that the new sound system, assembled by Audio Logic Systems, will be ready in time for the Christmas season events.

Softball dugouts

The New Richland Firemen’s Relief Association donated $5,000 towards the construction of dugouts for the softball field.

The dugouts will be constructed by the Construction Trades class, who have just completed the roof repair project they began earlier.

First National Bank

The First National Bank of Waseca delivered another $6,500 from Panther Debit Card receipts.

There was also a $100 anonymous donation for the Teacher Breakfast.

After Prom raffle discussed

Members of the NRHEG After Prom Committee appeared at last Monday’s meeting to discuss the possibility of holding a raffle to cover expenses.

The main obstacle to such a proposal is Minnesota law, which states that if a raffle is held by a school district (or by a non-profit organization supporting programs of the school), then one-half of the receipts must be awarded as prizes, and the other half may only be expended to defray the district’s cost of sending event participants to high school activities held at other locations.

Since the After Prom Party is independent and not an official high school activity, it isn’t eligible for financial aid from a school-run raffle. And the Prom itself is held at the school, so it is not an event at another location, and therefore is also ineligible.

Additionally, tickets must only be sold, and the drawing held, at a school event, and tickets may only be sold to event participants over 18 years old.

Board members agreed that a raffle would be a good idea, and expressed their support for the After Prom Party. Supt. Kevin Wellen added that it was a good thing to have the After Prom Party be unaffiliated with the school, so that it could be held under less restrictive conditions than if it were an official school event. But it was unclear how the problem of having a raffle could be solved.

The PTO representatives were urged to inquire around, to see if any other districts have come up with a workaround for providing help for their After Prom activities.

Cafeteria update

“All required documentation has been submitted to the MN Dept. of Education,” Wellen stated. He added that additional documentation was requested and provided, and “It appears that they now have everything they need to provide approval.”

“Proposals will start coming,” Wellen added. A memo has been sent out to several architectural/engineering firms requesting qualifications, experience, and fee proposals.

The board agreed to arrange a meeting for an initial review of proposals as soon as responses are received. From that point, a design firm will be approved, a visual presentation will be developed, and a community open house meeting will be held to receive feedback.

Wellen reminded the board that as of now, the District is still not committed to proceed with anything or to pay any more than the initial $5,000 up-front money agreed upon last month.

iPad Handbook amendment

The board approved an amendment to the iPad Handbook limiting when an iPad can be returned for a refund after purchase. First semester, it may be returned for 50 percent refund, but no refund if returned second semester or after.

Special meeting

A special meeting was set for Wednesday, Nov. 14, in the board room, to canvass the election results, and also to set a meeting for considering cafeteria proposals.

Student Council

Wellen told the board that a new position of Student Council Advisor was being considered. This would be the first step towards creating a “real Student Council” from the in-name-only entity that exists now. An active student organization could plan and organize dances and other events and provide leadership opportunity. 

Wellen suggested business teacher Sandy Schumacher as highly qualified for the job.



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