Looking at Changes-Newell School Board

Newell News

NEWELL-Several teacher resignations were approved at the regular Newell School Board meeting February 12. The resignations came from teachers nearing retirement or moving on to other opportunities.

Laurie Parker, Betsy Burtzlaff, Dahna Allard, Karen Jensen, and Scott Wince have handed in their formal resignations.

Laurie Parker has been a teacher in the Newell School District for 41 years. She says in her letter that “the decision to retire has not been an easy one to make” and she is grateful to have been part of students’ academic journey.

Betsy Burtzlaff is moving on to other pursuits after being part of the Newell teaching staff for many years.

Dahna Allard has been with the district for a short time as Business Manager and is looking forward to new enterprises.

Karen Jensen has seen many changes in the Business Office in the Newell School District and has been part of the Ag Department as a para and FFA Assistant Advisor.

Scott Wince is planning on embarking on a new journey laid on the foundation formed at Newell School. He has been part of the district for many years.

Results were given for the recent Parent/Teacher Conferences by Principal Steve Schoenfish. He reported that the average attendance for Elementary was 78% (the Kindergarten teacher was ill and new results brought the percentage up), MiddleSchool 77%, and High School 55%. These result in a 70% attendance to the conferences.

Schoenfish also reported on the recent virtual learning experienced by students during a snow day on January 18. Elementary had 14 students missing out of 107 students.

Middle School and High School are counted as periods. Middle School has 364 periods in a day. Thirty-three periods had missing students, making 91% of periods attended.

The High School didn’t show a good result. Out of 462 periods in a day, 122 periods had missing students. This resulted in a 73% of periods attended.

Schoenfish said that three students had called and said they did not have Internet services and thus were not figured into the totals.

Board Member Sara Brunner said that she hoped it would go better and that there was definitely a learning curve. She was disappointed with the High School portion of the report.

There was a question addressing the comparison of Virtual Learning versus the attendance of a make-up Friday. Schoenfish did not have the statistics, but would check on it.

A survey was sent out to consider the future of football at Newell School. There is a total of 28 high school boys. The survey was completed by 23 with 15 saying they would likely play football in the fall. There is a possibility of playing only JV football next fall, rather than having a varsity team. The Board members discussed several scenarios centered around the small number of athletes. A JV schedule would probably have games played on Mondays and/or Tuesdays. Another question would be Homecoming. AD Schoenfish needs to make plans to set game dates for the fall. A decision will be made at the March School Board meeting.

The Newell School Board was recognized by the Newell Community for all that they contribute to the community.

The next school board meeting will be Monday, March 11 at 6 pm. in the Multi-Purpose Room.