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NLS board hears proposal for middle school classes

NEW LONDON -- The New London-Spicer School Board heard a proposal Monday for adding exploratory classes at the district's middle school and a presentation by high school students on the design of the new playground at Prairie Woods Elementary School.

The exploratory classes, during an "early bird" session before school and during the first hour of classes, would offer students a taste of subjects they could pursue more in high school, according to Trish Perry, middle school principal.

"We want kids to be excited about learning," she said. "We made these classes as 'real world' and creative as possible."

The classes, offered to students in grades 7 and 8, would be for 15 sessions each and include agriculture, industrial technology, language arts and arts classes. The options include a small animal class, FFA leadership class, an intro to German session and classes on murals and public arts and on graffiti and urban art.

The board will consider approval of the exploratory classes at the May 24 meeting, according to Superintendent Paul Carlson. The sixth-class pay option would be used to pay the teachers instructing the additional classes, and requires board approval.

The board also heard a presentation by students in the high school architectural design class on the alignment of the new Prairie Woods playground with existing equipment and fields at the school.

As part of their class, the students measured the location and offered a scale drawing of their placement of the new playground structure, the relocation of existing swings and equipment for younger children and the location of two soccer/football fields and an enlarged basketball court on the site.

The existing playground will be demolished as soon as the school year is over. Then, construction of the new apparatus, built by Midwest Playscapes, is expected to be completed by the start of school in the fall.

The existing playground equipment dates back to the mid-1980s, when the elementary school was built. Seven sets of swings, plus some newer plastic play equipment will be salvaged and reinstalled near the new apparatus.

Gretchen Schlosser

Gretchen Schlosser is the public safety reporter, and writes about agriculture occasionally, for the West Central Tribune. She's been with the Tribune since 2006 and has 17 years of experience working in news, media and communications. 

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