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School Board: Changes coming to district policy on student publications

The Brainerd School Board Monday night took the first step in revising district policy on school-sponsored student publications and productions. Superintendent Laine Larson reviewed the differences between the current and revised policies. The po...

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. Jennifer Stockinger/Brainerd Dispatch
Brainerd Dispatch file photo

The Brainerd School Board Monday night took the first step in revising district policy on school-sponsored student publications and productions.

Superintendent Laine Larson reviewed the differences between the current and revised policies. The policy outlines differences between publications, like newspapers and yearbooks, and productions, like theater productions or audio broadcasts.

The biggest changes come in section IV, review of publications and productions, she said.

At least one teacher, coach, adviser or district representative will be assigned to oversee each publication or production, Larson said. That person will conduct a final review of all publications or productions before they are distributed, she said. If the person sees something questionable during their review, the person notifies the building principal in writing.

The number of advisers depends on the publication or production, Larson said. Some might have multiple people overseeing the production or publication, she said, while others might only have one person.

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All yearbooks and student newspapers need to be reviewed by an administrator, as well as the adviser, before publication and distribution, Larson said. This administrator cannot be the person assigned to oversee the publication or production, she said.

"If the adviser feels it's ready to be approved, they have to have it re-checked again by an administrator or the principal's designee," Larson said.

One attached document to this policy will outline classes where a student works on an online blog or publication. The student must have parental permission before taking the class, Larson said.

Another attached document will outline the policy for students obtaining information from other students to use in publications or productions. For example, a student getting a quote from another student for the yearbook will have to write those quotes down, Larson said. The quoted student and the student's parent must then sign off on those quotes before they are published, she said.

"We understand that they're going to be quite cumbersome," Larson said. "But we really need to do this to ensure that we aren't publishing something of a minor that hasn't gotten parental approval."

Both those attached documents were not presented for approval Monday night and will be added to the policy in the future, Larson said.

Guidelines on what's not allowed in school-sponsored publications or productions includes a line prohibiting material constituting bullying or cyberbullying. This is an addition to the current policy.

The board unanimously approved the first reading of the revisions to policy 512 - School-Sponsored Student Publications and Productions. There will be a second reading of the policy before it is formally adopted at the third, final reading.

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In other business, the board:

Approved an agreement with the city of Brainerd for school resource officer services for Brainerd High School for 2017-19. The Brainerd Police Department will provide an officer to the school for eight hours of each school day from the first day of the school year through the last day of the school year. The school district will pay the city $53,722 for 2017-18 and $55,065 for 2018-19 for these services.

Approved an agreement with the city of Baxter for school liaison officer services for Forestview Middle School for 2017-19. The officer will be provided for one hour each day during the school year, for a total of 173 hours during the school year. The school district will pay the city $49.29 per hour for 2017-18 and $52.15 per hour for 2018-19 for these services. This works out to $8,527 for 2017-18 and $9,022 for 2018-19.

Approved an agreement with General Security Services Corporation for security officer services for Brainerd High School for the 2017-18 school year. The company will provide two uniformed security officers from 7:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. when school is in session, with an additional officer from 7:30-9:30 a.m. and from 1:30-3:30 p.m. The rate is $19.63 per hour per officer and $29.44 per overtime or holiday hour per officer.

Approved an agreement with General Security Services Corporation for security officer services for Forestview Middle School for the 2017-18 school year. The company will provide one uniformed security officer for eight hours during the school day. The initial schedule is 7:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m., but may vary depending on activities or events. The rate is $19.63 per hour per officer and $29.44 per overtime or holiday hour per officer.

Accepted donations from the month of August totaling $5,100. A saxophone was also donated to the Forestview Middle School band program.

Accepted the resignation of Sarah Garczynski, parent educator, early childhood family education, effective July 27.

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