Colfax school board hires three teachers

By LeAnn R. Ralph

COLFAX  — The Colfax Board of Education has approved hiring a high school agriculture teacher, a sixth grade teacher and a middle school science and math teacher.

Tiffany Schaffner will be Colfax High School’s new agriculture teacher and FFA advisor.

Schaffner taught at Rosholt for seven years and came highly recommended by the superintendent and the principal, said William C. Yingst Jr., school district administrator, at the Colfax Board of Education’s June 18 meeting.

Schaffner is the state co-chair of the agriculture curriculum committee. She and her husband are looking to purchase a house in the school district, he said.

Schaffner had hoped to be around for the Colfax Free Fair as well (June 21 to June 24), Yingst said.

Sixth grade

Megan Pawlak will be the new sixth grade teacher at Colfax Elementary and was a student teacher at Colfax last year, Yingst said.

Having a student teacher who can apply for a job is a rare opportunity. When candidates have taught in a district as a student teacher, it’s a good way to conduct a job interview, he said.

Pawlak also has worked for the Colfax school district as a substitute teacher and a long-term substitute teacher, he said.

She is willing to get involved in coaching cross country track and ran Grandma’s Marathon the previous weekend, Yingst said.

Pawlak was a long-term sub in junior kindergarten and did “a fantastic job,” said Trevor Hovde, Colfax Elementary principal.

She is very thorough, is respected by the other staff and has a good relationship with the students, he said.

Pawlak is currently teaching summer school, Hovde noted.

“She is upbeat, and I think she will do a great job for us,” he said.

Middle school

Kassandra Behymer will be the new seventh grade science and math teacher at Colfax Middle School.

The Colfax school district had some good candidates apply for the position, Yingst said.

Behymer graduated from UW-Eau Claire in December, and she is originally from Watertown, he noted.

Behymer also was a student teacher at Colfax and has done some substitute teaching at the elementary school and the middle school, Yingst said.

“She is a solid candidate and will be a good fit at the middle school,” said John Dachel, Colfax High School principal.

“She is a bundle of energy and very hard working,” Hovde said.

“Kassandra does a great job of building relationships with the students, but she also is not afraid to say, ‘get to work,’” he said.

Behymer also is helping with summer school, Hovde noted.

The Colfax Board of Education unanimously approved hiring Schaffner as the agriculture teacher, Pawlak as a sixth grade teacher and Behymer as a middle school teacher.

Keep an eye on the Colfax Messenger for more detailed profiles of the new teachers this fall when school starts.

Other business

In other business, the Colfax Board of Education:

• Learned that 27 students in the elementary school’s Accelerated Reader program had read one million words, while nine students had read two million words and two students had read three million words. All together, 391 students participated in the Accelerated Reader program.

• Learned that Kara Zutter has been awarded the Career Prep Mini Grant from Chippewa Valley Technical College in the amount of $788 to be used toward the purchase of software for her business education classroom.

• Learned that Colfax High School will be offering 24 credits which can be put toward a two-year or a four-year college degree in the 2018-2019 school year: horticulture, medical terminology, Microsoft office, publishing, accounting, psychology, sociology, statistics (new), sign language (new) and possibly computer aided drafting. Colfax is trying to get closer to offering 30 credits. Many schools are changing from Advanced Placement classes to dual credit classes, Dachel said.

• Learned that Colfax High School graduated 100 percent of the seniors this year. Every single student in the senior class walked across the stage for a diploma, Dachel said.

• Received a reminder that the school district’s annual meeting will be July 23.

• Scheduled the audit review for July 16 at 6 p.m., and scheduled the budget review on July 16 at 6:30 p.m.

• Accepted the resignation of Jennifer Mohr as the Destination Imagination advisor. In her letter of resignation, Mohr said her daughter will be in seventh grade next year and will be playing middle school sports. Being the Destination Imagination coordinator would not allow her to leave school in time to watch her daughter in sports. Mohr said she is very much willing to help guide the new Destination Imagination advisor through the first year.

• Accepted the resignation of Joel Steinke as the assistant high school football coach.

• Approved continuing membership in the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association for the 2018 – 2019 school year. The WIAA has not charged any membership fees for the past few years because membership fees apparently cause issues for the association’s liability, Yingst said. Colfax will participate in boys’ baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, track and field and cooperative wrestling and in girls’ basketball, cross country, golf, softball, track and field and volleyball. The WIAA notes Colfax “saved” $650 by not being charged a membership fee. 

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