The Walker-Hackensack-Akeley School Board met April 8 to receive reports from the administrative team.

PK-5 Principal Jill McGowan reported that conferences took place March 14-19. Participation was down a bit from last year, but PK-5 parents are still averaging 84 percent participation at the conferences.

Pine-River-Backus (PR-B) Elementary staff made a High Reliability Schools (HRS) site visit March 21. Lagging indicators for levels one, two and three were discussed, different classrooms were visited, and a teacher forum was held.

McGowan said it was a positive visit regarding feedback as well as offering PR-B guidance on their own HRS efforts.

The Walker Rotary sponsored bingo for books April 4. The event was well received; students won books as well as door prizes to help promote reading.

The Rotary Reading Challenge celebration March 13 included a pepfest and obstacle course where each grade picked a student to compete.

The PK-5 classes set goals for reading and literature skills and abilities to be met by March 1. McGowan reported that PK’s goal of 75 percent of students needing to identify 15 upper case letters was met by 82 percent of the students.

Kindergarten students set an 80 percent goal for retelling a story from beginning to end without clues. Seventy-two percent of students met the goal.

First-grade students set a goal to increase their reading skills by four levels, and 85 percent of students met the goal.

Second graders set a goal of 90 percent of students increasing two book levels, and 98 percent of students met the goal.

Third-grade students set a goal of 90 percent of students to improve their DAZE score by 10 words; 71 percent of students met the goal.

Fourth graders set a goal of 80 percent to read 10 novels, at their lexile level, 50 pages or more, and 100 percent of students met the goal.

Fifth graders set a goal to increase their lexile levels by 15 percent, and 100 percent of the students met the goal.

Principal Ryan Jensen (6-12) reported that the high school’s chapter of the National Honor Society inducted six students: Elise Rice, Katie Swanson, Emma Deegan, Aleah Tabbers, Brittney Wolter and Gretchen Strand.

Athletic Director/Community Ed Director Travis Hensch reported that March ushered in spring sports (weather not withstanding). Golf, track, baseball and softball are gearing up to start any day, depending on the weather and the conditions of the fields and the golf courses.

Coaches and Director Hensch are brainstorming on the summer months, and how to develop a regimen for students to help maintain and increase their athletic skills.

On April 2, WHA hosted a job fair with 30 area businesses present to dicuss possible employment opportunities.

Under new business, the board approved the 2018-19 revised budget as well as a bid for site improvements, recommended by ICS Consulting (Fargo, N.D.), and an IAQ upgrade on everything from plumbing and heating to electrical.

In other business, the board approved the nonrenewal of teaching contracts for Natasha Hart and Louise Bass.

The board also accepted resignations from Andrew Lapegaard, high school English teacher; Stormy Campbell, paraprofessional; as well as the retirement of Pat Haataja, a Media Center paraprofessional/MAARSS coordinator, effective June 28.

New hires include Pat Richter, junior high baseball coach, Jim Lien, assistant baseball coach, and Dan Craven, head baseball coach.

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