GC Superintendent proposes lengthening school days to make up for weather closures
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GLENWOOD CITY — Superintendent Tim Johnson proposed lengthening the school day as a way to recover missed instructional time due to recent weather-related school closures during the Glenwood City Board of Education’s January 23 meeting.
Johnson informed board members that school has been cancelled seven days so far this academic year due to inclement weather conditions with an additional three hours of late start and early dismissal. While two of those days have been alternative learning days, which Johnson explained to the board can be counted as a full day of school, the district will fall roughly 10 hours short of its state-mandate amount of instructional time.
Under Johnson’s proposal, an additional 10 minutes would be added to the start of each day beginning Monday, February 27 and running through the remainder of the school year. That would mean the official start times in the high school/middle school and elementary would begin ten minutes earlier each day.
No action was taken by the board but the proposal will likely be voted upon at its next meeting which is scheduled for Monday, February 13.
Johnson also noted that further school closures will be alternative learning days. On those days, students will be assigned learning projects to work on from home with teachers available via email to answer questions and offer assistance.
The board did approve next year’s school calendar at the meeting. The 2023-24 calendar shows school beginning Tuesday, August 29 with three days of transition schooling, which the district has conducted the past couple of years. It also contained week-long breaks for Thanksgiving (November 20-24), Christmas (December 25 through January 1) and a spring break (March 25-29) that coincides with the Easter holiday. In-person parent-teacher conferences have been slated for October 12, 2023 for the middle school/high school and November 2 and 3, 2023 for the elementary; spring conferences communications will be held March 11-15, 2024. Graduation has been set for Saturday, May 18, 2024 with the final day of instruction for students being Thursday, May 30, 2024.
Personnel matters were also handled during the board’s approval of its consent agenda. Matina Campetti was approved as a substitute teacher while Tryn Gross’ resignation as a middle school track coach was accepted. Due to time commitments, Gross will instead serve as a track volunteer. The board also approved the volunteer applications of Sarah Kaiser for softball and Jamie Knops for wrestling.
Superintendent Johnson was also pleased to announce that Glenwood City was once again a part of the Dunn-St. Croix under the WIAA’s revised proposal for football conference realignments which is set to take effect in the 2024-25 season. The WIAA’s original proposal,which was presented last fall, had the Hilltoppers moving to the Small Heart O’ North (HON) Conference which would have been comprised of Cameron, Chetek-Weyerhaeuser, Clear Lake, Grantsburg, Ladysmith, Turtle Lake and Glenwood City. The Dunn-St. Croix would have included Boyceville, Cadott, Colfax, Elmwood-Plum City, Spring Valley, Unity and Webster.
Johnson along with athletic director Jake Score attended a hearing in Stevens Point on the proposed changes. The duo explained the added travel time and expense Glenwood City would incur should it be moved to a new conference. Under a Dunn-St. Croix proposal, which had received near unanimous support from fellow Dunn-St. Croix, Lakeland and Heart O’ North schools, Johnson and Score showed the added travel time and expense the district would incur as well as the loss of longtime rivalries by being added to the proposal Small HON.
The lobby efforts of Johnson and Score seemed to have swayed the WIAA board. Within a few days following the hearing, the WIAA released a revised realignment plan which leaves Glenwood City in the Dunn-St. Croix for football. Johnson told board members that the revised plan would have another hearing before it is voted on by the WIAA.
The superintendent also updated the board on the progress of this coming summer’s CTE improvement project. Johnson told members that the project went out for bids on January 12. A construction walk through was held January 30 with bid opening slated for February 7 at 2 p.m. in the board room.