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The Bemidji School Board gave its unanimous approval Monday night to reduce licensed staff positions by about $813,000 for the upcoming school year. The decision comes after recent board discussion on how to trim the school district's operating budget by about $692,000 for that year.
The Bemidji School Board has officially decided to hold a referendum this fall. On Monday night, the board voted 5-1 to hold a referendum asking voters to renew a five-year operating levy at the current $501 per-pupil rate. As part of Monday night's vote, the board agreed to continue discussion of potentially adding a second ballot question. Voting in opposition was board member Gene Dillon.
A fire damaged a house early Saturday morning at 8901 Bemidji Road. The Bemidji Fire Department responded to the fire at 12:20 a.m. and remained on the scene for four hours, Firefighter Mitch Howe said. He said most of the fire damage is located the house's attic. The house also sustained smoke and water damage. No one was home at the time of the fire, Howe said. He said the fire remains under investigation and the cause of the fire is unknown. The Fire Department responded with 25 firefighters, two pumper trucks, two tankers and two squad vehicles.
The Bemidji School Board will consider Monday soliciting bids for a project to expand and rebuild the bus area and add parking spaces at Horace May Elementary School. The board will meet at 6:30 p.m. in the Bemidji High School Media Center. Besides the Horace May project and other agenda items, the board will discuss holding an operating levy referendum in the fall and consider potential reductions and additions in programs and positions.
Education Minnesota President Tom Dooher is calling for lawmakers to provide a short-term fix for school funding and then begin tackling long-term school funding reform. "We are asking the Legislature and the governor to come up with an inflationary increase for the next school year because last year they didn't finish the job," he said in an interview Wednesday in Bemidji. Dooher is touring the state to advocate for a change in school funding.
With a diverse blend of international cuisine, performances, games and other activities, the 39th annual Festival of Nations will showcase cultures around the globe Saturday at Bemidji State University. "It's like going around the world in four hours," said festival coordinator Hui Min Wong, a senior from Malaysia. Festival of Nations, organized by BSU's International Student Organization, will be held from 3-7 p.m. Saturday in the Beaux Arts Ballroom at BSU.
Winona LaDuke believes a brighter future for the world starts today. LaDuke spoke about this vision in her keynote address, "Climate Change, Peak Oil and Food Security: Challenges and Strategies for this Millennium," Wednesday at Bemidji State University's ninth annual Student Scholarship and Creative Achievement Conference. Her keynote address marked the start of the one-day conference, which featured student presentations, performances, poster displays and exhibits, as well as the Beaver Film Festival.
Whether down the road in Bagley, across the country in Florida or overseas in South Africa, Flat Stanleys created by local students are discovering adventure around the world. Second-graders at Lincoln Elementary School made the paper cut-outs after reading the book "Flat Stanley" by Jeff Brown and have mailed them to relatives and friends. "He has traveled long and far," second-grade teacher Kelly Brunetta said. The recipients host the Flat Stanleys for a short visit and then mail them back with stories and photos of what they did and saw together. "It's kind of like Christmas," said seco
Students and staff members were dismissed Monday from Bagley High School and Bagley Elementary School as the result of a bomb threat. At about 7:52 a.m., the Clearwater County Sheriff's Office received a report of a bomb threat at Bagley High School according a press release from Clearwater County Attorney Jeanine Brand. Law enforcement officers conducted a search of the high school after students and staff members were dismissed and found it to be a false report.
A group of Bemidji High School alumni plans to raise money to save architectural features from a building on the old high school campus. Sharon Fruetel of Bemidji, a 1964 BHS graduate who organized the group, said alumni decided at a Thursday meeting to explore grant, loan and contribution possibilities to save features from the front of the school's A Building. Demolition of the A Building and auditorium is set for May after hazardous material abatement is completed. The Bemidji State University Foundation owns about 12 acres of the old BHS campus, including the A Building and auditorium.