Maple Lake School District began 2012 with good news: Enrollment stood at 946.5, compared to the 942 number used for the budget. Unfortunately for the district, kindergarten through 12th-grade enrollment dropped to 905.62, below the 913 budget number, about a year later.
The drop in enrollment, and subsequent decrease in funding, is now pushing the district to consider cutting 5.76 full-time equivalent licensed staff positions, 2 FTE instructional aide positions, one FTE custodian, a media manager position and other part-time positions in an effort to save about half of the projected $882,000 shortfall.
In spring of 2012, the district found itself an estimated $359,000 over budget, though, when unassigned funds were considered, that number was closer to $162,000.
In April, the school board addressed the shortfall by eliminating 1.3 FTE aide and paraprofessional positions, including one who resigned; full-time elementary teacher Dawn Hanson, who had been approved for a year-long leave; .35 FTE part-time overload positions in art, physical education and Spanish; a .03 FTE elementary music teaching position; and secretarial
restructuring due to the resignation of office clerk and secretary Kim Schwartz.
While stimulus dollars dropped more than
$88,000, Literacy Incentive Aid was estimated to be about $50,000.
In a bit of good news, the school’s levy rate decreased .27 percent.
School board changes The Maple Lake School
District began 2012 by naming Shelley McAlpine school board chair and Brad Neutz as vice chair. Neutz was named chair a year later, as McAlpine transitioned to the clerk position, and Arnie Michalicek became vice chair. New members Ben Elsenpeter and Joe Paumen also joined the board at that time.
The board also decided to combine the Q Comp and District Staff Advisory Teams into one District Leadership Team.
Awards and recognitions Brian Redemske and
Laura Wagner represented Maple Lake High School as the Academics, Arts and Athletics award winners. A year later, Laura’s brother, Neal, and Hannah Haegele claimed the award.
Freshman Charlie Stejskal represented MLHS at the state speech tournament, marking the third consecutive year in which MLHS was represented.
Six MLHS students were selected for the Wright County Boy/Girl County Day: Hannah Haegele, Rachel Latour, Holly Goelz, Greg Dorow, Neal Wagner and Ben Winkelman. Haegele and Wagner were also selected to attend Boys and Girls State.
MLHS students Brooke Decker, Lexi Pingel, Alexandra Schonnesen and Brady Gagnon were named Students of Excellence.
Emily Webb and Jackson Willard represented MLHS at the State Vocal Solo and Ensemble Contest, with Webb receiving an excellent rating from her judge and Willard receiving a superior rating. MLHS senior Aaron
Carlson, who had been critically injured a year earlier, was named a KARE-11 Academic All-Star.
MLHS graduated 77 seniors on June 1.
In July, the Irish Marching Band participated in parades in Boston and Rhode Island.
Ten new teachers started at MLHS and Maple Lake Elementary.
MLE was classified as a “Reward School” in the Minnesota Department of Education’s multiple Measurement Ratings, meaning it was in the highest performing 15 percent of schools receiving Title I funding for low-income