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::" t Mark Messman Superintendent, Eden Valley-Watkins Schools February 22 Update Legislative Updates: The legislative session con- tinues to move slower than nor- mal while legislators continue to review the governor's budget recommendations and get more familiar with the issues that will come before their committees this session. For the most part, legis- lators are waiting for an updated forecast to come out early March and for legislative leadership to establish committee budget tar- gets shortly after that. Then, the real work of putting a budget together begins. The governor's bill has several major areas of concern. The 1-percent increase to the basic formula in 2013-14 will not cover rising costs. At a mini- mum, schools need inflationary increases to maintain class sizes, program offerings and other valu- able educational opportunities. In 2014-15, the governor invests $122 million to reduce the special education unfunded costs which frees up general education dollars that are used to cover the mandated services. The dollars are distributed in such a way that some districts will get an increase of 1 percent while other districts will see increases over 4 percent. Without any additional revenue on the basic formula, districts with the lower increases will struggle to maintain programming for their students. The governor's K-12 target is $302 million, which translates into a 1-percent increase in the first fis- calyear of the biennium. If schools are to receive more than this, then legislators need to hear from com- munity members, school officials and staff soon. Requesting fund- ing levels sufficient to cover the cost of inflation each year is nec- essary to provide students ade- quate and equitable funding. To do this, the legislature would need to increase education dollars for the next biennium to at least meet the expected rate of inflation of (1.74 percent CPI). It also appears that assess- ments, licensure exams and inte- gration aid are going to be focal points of discussion at the legis- lature. Both the House and Senate Education Policy committees have started digging into these issues. It seems that the Math GRAD will be eliminated. It's doubtful that the legislature will completely elim- inate the basic skills test require- ment for licensure, but a change to this process is in the works. Construction Update: The construction project is really winding down and we don't have many contractors on site. The most recent installations and completions have been to the elec- tronic lift, stage and gym floors, and door security system. We'll continue to complete our "punch- list" items that need to be modi- fied as well as final decisions and installation of the lights, audio, and curtain for the stage. As a reminder, all of our exterior doors are locked at 8:30 a.m. and all vis- itors need to check into the High School office located at the South entrance of Brooks Street Lobby. School Board: This is a busy time of year for school board members and administration as we get into our financial planning phase for the upcoming school year. This is a difficult process as school districts are required to adopt an annual budget in June while they wait for proposed funds or anticipated rev- enue cuts from the state, and don't receive final notification" on these numbers until the middle of May when the legislative session ends. s a result, our board continues to monitor the current legislative session, budget status, and make recommendations if necessary. In order to maintain fiscal responsibility for the school dis- trict, we'll continue to gather valu- able data to guide our decision- making process with a common goal of increasing student achieve- ment levels. We plan to review pro- jected enrollment numbers, rev- enue assumptions, anticipated expenditures, program staffing, appropriate class size, contracts, and potential legislative action. The majority of the planning and budgeting takes place during the months of February and March, and as usual, your input and ques- tions are always appreciated. Senior of the Week: The EV-W School District would like to recognize Courtney Dilley, daughter of Brad and Jodi. Court- ney brings a strong academic pres- ence into the classroom, and dem- onstrates leadership skills on the basketball and volleyball courts. She is currently leading all scor- ers on the girls' basketball team and provides great role model- ing both on and off the court. The EV-W administration, faculty and staff are extremely proud of your accomplishments. Congratulations! School menu Mar. 4-8 Breakfast Monday: 3 donut holes, cheese stick, assorted juice cups, milk. Tuesday: Cheese omelet, toast with jelly, assorted juice cups, milk. Wednesday: Pancakes, sausage links, assorted juice cups, milk. Thursday: Banana chocolate bread, yogurt cup, assorted juice cups, milk. Friday: Mini cinnis, cheese stick, assorted juice cups, milk. Lunch Monday:. German Day, pork patty onWG bun, orham sub, French fries, broccoli florets, cucumber slices, melon slices, pineapple tidbits, mile Two Powder Ridge Alpine Racers crowned Regional Champions Forty-two area alpine skiers competed in Regional MN Junior D-Team Alpine Championships on Saturday, Feb. 23, at Mount Kato, Mankato. The meet was won by Welch Village followed by Mount Kato in second, Buck Hill in third, and Powder Ridge in fourth. From a total of 293 competitors, combined best slalom and giant slalom times were used to score results. Powder Ridge had two Gold Medal Cham- pions, Hannah Spoden (Girls age 8) Sartell and Leah Wimmer (Girls age 13) St. Cloud. Silver medals were earned by Ellie Becker (Girls age H6) Kimball and Kelly Zelko (Girls 15+) Buffalo. Bronze medals were taken by Andy Becker (Boys age U6) Kimball and Griffin Steil (Boys age 7) St. Cloud. Tom Becker (Boys age 8) Kimball, Ben Nel- son (Boys age 9) St. Cloud, Rachel Boesen (Girls age 10) Albertville, and Helena Nelson (Girls age 14) Litchfield earned fourth-place fin- ishes. Abby Wright (Girls age 7) St. Cloud, Ashley Stolt (Girls age 8) St. Cloud, and Brinley Zoller (Girls age 13). Becker also scored team points with fifth-place finishes. Other top 10 finishes included a sixth by Shelby Zoller (Girls age 10) Becket and lake Wimmer (Boys age 10) St. Cloud, seventh by Ben Wright (Boys age 12) St. Cloud, eighth place by Elliot Simon (Boys age 7) Albertville and Devin Rus- sell (Boys age 13) and ninth by lack Rice (Boys age 7) Sank Rapids. Skiers interested in joining the Alpine Race Team should contact Powder Ridge at (800) 348-7734, or visit our website at powderridge. COm. Respectfully submitted by David W. Bacharach, PR ]r Ski Team Coach EV-W defeats Kimball in 6th-grade tournament EV-W 6th grade boys beat Kimball in the final game of the Hutchinson tournament Saturday, Feb. 23. The score was 47-24. Pictured are the winning EV-W players, in front row, left to right: Damian Lincoln, Gavin Klocker, and Peyton Thul; in back are Justin Streit, Andrew Fyle, Herbie Walker, Jack Lies, and Alex Marquedant. Coaches (not pictured} are Susie Anderson and Rich Streit. Staff photo by Anton Matua. Tuesday: Chicken and gravy, WG dinner roll or fajitas, mashed pota- toes, spinach salad w/FF dress- ing, kidney beans, orange wedges, diced pears, milk. Wednesday: Italian meatball sub or chicken Caesar wrap, steamed broccoli, baby carrots, radishes, pineapple, mixed fruit, milk. Thursday: Spanish Day, enchi- ladas or chicken teriyaki w/rice, both with a churro, refried beans, cherry tomatoes, apples, peach slices, milk. Friday: Hot turkey sub or egg- salad sub, tri-taters, or chef salad w/breadstick, baby carrots, cauli- flower, bananas, apple slices, milk. St. John's Prep hosts Discovery Day Families interested in learn- ing about the innovative curric- ulum, and other opportunities at St. John's Prep, are encouraged to attend the upcoming Discov- ery Day Friday, March 8. Students currently in grades 5-11 are wel- come to attend classes, meet the teachers and students, and expe- rience what it's like to be a part of the St. John's Prep community. Parents are also invited to attend information sessions with admin- istrators of the school. Guest students arrive before 8 a.m. and are matched with a "host" student for the day. The Middle School (for incoming grades 6-8) Discovery Day ends after lunch at approximately 12:30 p.m. For the Upper School (for incoming grades 9-12), Discovery Day guests are invited to spend the entire day in classes. Registration for Discovery Day is required. Call us today at (320) 363-3321. Because of limited space, we encourage interested families to apply now for the 2013- 14 academic year. Seminar on bankruptcy and credit issues to be held The Volunteer Attorney Pro- gram for Central Minnesota Legal  Services (CMLS), in St. Cloud, has scheduled a, Community Educa- tion Seminar on Bankruptcy and Credit Issues for 10:30 a.m. to 12 noon, Thursday, March 18, at Great River Regional Library, 1300 West St. Germain St., St. Cloud. The presenter, Stephen L. Heller, Esp., of Heller & Thyen, PA, will present at the seminar. During his presentation, Mr. Heller will pro- vide information on Credit Basics, How Credit Affects One's Ability to Conduct Everyday Business, How to Obtain a Credit Report, Report- ing Credit Report Errors, Debt Man- agement Programs, Fair Debt Col- lection, Considering Bankruptcy, When Should You File for Bank- ruptcy, What Types of Bankrupt- cies Should be Filed, How to Handle Garnishment, Can an Individual File Bankruptcy on His and/or Her Own, and How to Handle Phone Calls, Letters, Collection Agen- cies, and/or Attorneys. Mr. Heller will also be available to answer any questions from the audience. This seminar is free to those interested individuals. Please call (320) 257-4873 to register. If fewer than five people register, the semi- nar will be canceled. For more information and to make reservations, please call Kathy Wingen, Volunteer Attor- ney Program Coordinator at (320) 257-4873, or e-mail her at ktwingen @centralmnlegalstc.org. Sports, School News, Legals, Crime, Photos, Obits, Announcements, Classifieds, Weather, Archives, and much morel www.tricountynews.MN