BEMIDJI -- Just a couple of weeks out from the Nov. 2 special election referendum vote, the Bemidji Area School Board will meet in regular session at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 18, in the district office board room.
Superintendent Tim Lutz will provide his routine referendum update along with a COVID update for the district.
One resolution as part of the High-Quality District portion of the meeting will include appointing additional election judges for the upcoming election following certain judges expressing an inability to serve their roles.
The school board will also review class sizes that exceed the district’s administrative guidelines. Lutz is expected to provide class reports in October and February of each school year to identify exceptions to class size limits or make recommendations to balance class sizes.
All affected classes are offered at Bemidji High School and include Basic Accounting, two sections of 10th grade English, First Aid/CPR, five sections of ninth-grade Science Investigations and three sections of American Sign Language I. All 12 affected classes exceed enrollment guidelines by one to three students.
While music and physical education classes are exceptions to the policy, it was determined that the high school’s PE classes exceed the policy in an effort to offset those class sizes, some having 50 or more students. BHS has 242 course offerings in the first term.
Director of Human Resources Jordan Hickman will review staff appointments with the board, including the approval of two additional teachers at Northern Elementary, a vacancy for a language arts position at Bemidji Middle School, an approval for an elementary teacher at Horace May and approval for a social worker at Lincoln Elementary.
The district’s Local Indian Education Committee annually reviews Indian Policies and Procedures that impact the district’s intent of providing equal access to the district’s programs and services for Native American children in the district.
The board will review these IPPs as part of the Title VIII Impact Aid Program, which will make the district eligible for Impact Aid dollars payable for the 2023 fiscal year.
One such policy would provide an opportunity for White Earth, Leech Lake and Red Lake Nations, along with Native American parents, to give recommendations on the district’s programs/activities and how to address disparate participation levels between Native and non-Native students.
Director of Business Services Krisi Fenner will introduce another resolution that would declare a property surplus for property previously used for school purposes located at 1420 Beltrami Ave. NW. The board will vote on whether or not to declare this as a surplus and available for sale.
The Bemidji High School Music Department is requesting board approval for a performance and educational tour in Washington D.C., which will take place April 2-8. If approved, 135 students and 15 staff will attend using fundraising dollars.
The public can attend the meeting in person or watch the meeting on the district’s YouTube channel.