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School Board to meet at Forestview beginning in November

Washington Educational Services Building will be the last of the district's buildings to undergo construction after the 2018 referendum.

The sign welcoming people to the Washington Educational Services Building, where the Brainerd School Board meets.
The sign welcoming people to the Washington Educational Services Building, where the Brainerd School Board meets.
Brainerd Dispatch file photo
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BRAINERD — The Brainerd School Board will meet at Forestview Middle School beginning in November while construction takes place at the Washington Educational Services Building.

This move is a change from the original plan for the board to meet at Brainerd High School.

Beginning with its regular meeting Nov. 14, the board will host meetings in the middle school choir room.

The Washington building, which houses the district’s welcome center, administrative offices and the Paul Bunyan Education Cooperative, is the last of the district’s building projects that resulted from the 2018 bond referendum .

Work on the building includes the relocation of offices, addition of a multipurpose flex space and more bathrooms, updating of existing bathrooms and the addition of a wheelchair lift on the south side of the building. Bus and parent drop-off and pickup will move from Oak Street to South Eighth and Pine streets.

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District offices and the welcome center at Washington will close Wednesday, Oct. 19, and reopen at 110 NW Third St., which is the red house on the southeast side of Riverside Elementary School.

The project is supposed to wrap up in August 2023.

In other business Monday, the board: 

Approved new hires: Anna Carbajal, Megan Johnson, Andrea Parrington and Emma Peterson, targeted services at Nisswa Elementary; Raymond Borg, educational assistant in transportation department; Kylie Dano, educational assistant at Brainerd High School; Tacoma DeRosier, districtwide part-time substitute custodian; Paul Hestness, districtwide part-time substitute custodian; Emily Imgrund, educational assistant at Warrior Early Learning Center; Amber Johnson, behavior management specialist at Lincoln Education Center; Luksamee Jones, educational assistant in the transportation department; Richard Nelson Sr., educational assistant in the transportation department; Laurie Stephens, cook manager at Warrior Early Learning Center; Lisa Sunder, educational assistant at Nisswa Elementary; Billie Voss, nutrition professional at Forestview Middle School; Yan Wittwer, districtwide custodian; Zachary Capistrant, game/event worker at BHS; Priscilla DeMarre, districtwide game/event worker; Clarissa Hartz, districtwide educational assistant; Michelle Hilborn, high school concessions manager; Zach Hoard, districtwide game/event worker; Nicole Jedlenski, districtwide continuing enrichment instructor; Kathleen Kongsjord, seventh grade assistant volleyball coach; Sophia Robin, Fun ‘N’ Friends site supervisor substitute; Hailey Rush, districtwide educational assistant; Ken Solarz, assistant girls varsity tennis coach; Brian Stark, assistant adapted floor hockey coach; Ashley Utz, Fun ‘N’ Friends program assistant.

Accepted donations: 50 composition notebooks from Office Max for student needs at Forestview; $400 from Lake Hubert Women’s Club for student needs at Nisswa Elementary; $2,396.61 from Niswa Parent Teacher Organization for healthy snacks and supplies at Nisswa Elementary; new signs from Downtown Art & Frame for the Practical Assessment Exploration System lab at Lincoln Education Center; 225 free basic picture package codes from Lifetouch for student needs at Washington Educational Services Building; school supplies from Ace Hardware for student needs at Harrison Elementary; snacks from Community of Hope Church of Nazarene for student needs at Harrison Elementary; backpack and school supplies from Greenly Moos for students in need at Harrison Elementary; school supplies from Bethel Lutheran Church for student needs at Harrison Elementary at Forestview; $350 from Park United Methodist Church for the BHS robotics team; $2,000 from Brainerd Recreation & Supply Inc. for student programs and activities at Lincoln Education Center.

Approved a field trip for BHS Spanish students to visit Spain in spring 2024.

Renewed a lease agreement with Crow Wing County for the school district farm for another year from Jan. 1-Dec. 31, 2023, at a cost of $25.

Renewed a contract with Mike’s Tree Company for snow removal services for the 2022-23 school year at a cost of $174,993.

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Approved the bid process and contract for sale of the BHS building trades house with Edina Realty.

Agreed to support a resolution from the Minnesota School Boards Association that would change state statute to no longer require school boards to fill vacancies that occur less than three months before an election .

Approved the first reading of an updated service animals policy, allowing the presence of therapy dogs in schools under certain conditions.

Approved the first reading of an updated conflict of interest policy for school board members, according to Minnesota School Boards Association guidance, increasing the amount a school board member employed in the district is allowed to earn from $8,000 per year to $20,000. Board members can only have paid jobs — such as coaching or part-time work — in the district if they earn $20,000 or less per year.

Approved the first reading of an updated dress code policy to include tattoos — temporary or permanent — as items that must follow the district’s dress code and cannot be lewd, vulgar, obscene, defamatory, profane or advocate violence or harassment against others.

Approved a 2022-24 compensation and benefits handbook for head cooks, with hourly wages ranging from $17.16 to $29.57 in 2022-23 and from $17.50 to $30.01 in 2023-24.

Editor's note: This story was updated Oct. 13 to correct the date district offices will close.

THERESA BOURKE may be reached at theresa.bourke@brainerddispatch.com or 218-855-5860. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/DispatchTheresa .

Theresa Bourke started working at the Dispatch in July 2018, covering Brainerd city government and area education, including Brainerd Public Schools and Central Lakes College.
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