I cover education issues for the West Central Tribune and have worked for the paper since 1995. I have worked in journalism since 1981.
Follow me on Twitter: @lindavanderwerf
- Member for
- 4 years 10 months
WILLMAR — Willmar Senior High has received a grant from the University of Minnesota to implement a new curriculum aimed at providing career readiness training for students. The school will be implementing a new selection of classes that will allow students to graduate with as many as 32 college credits. The grant, called Ramp-Up to Readiness, will help schools implement 2013 legislation called World’s Best Workforce. Principal Paul Schmitz talked about the school’s plans at a recent School Board meeting. The law is going to change a number of things about high schools in the state.
WILLMAR — Guillermina and Salvador Serrano always wanted to own a restaurant, and last summer they got their chance. In July, the couple purchased the former Los Primos in downtown Willmar.
WILLMAR —Willmar’s Early Childhood Cabinet is asking the Willmar School Board to approve some funding for their efforts to help all children be ready for kindergarten. Members of the cabinet spoke at a board meeting Monday about their plans to get rid of an early achievement gap for children from low-income families. They also outlined how the school district could help reach even more children by providing some sustaining funding. No decision on the funding was made on Monday, as the meeting was a workshop session and no formal action was taken.
WILLMAR — Technical Academies of Minnesota plans to offer a different option for secondary students in the area, but some parts of the experience will still be a little traditional. TAM is a series of tuition-free public charter schools seeking state approval to open charter schools in Willmar, Owatonna, Rochester and Jackson. The state Department of Education hasn’t given final approval for the school in Willmar yet, but informational meetings have been held in Willmar this month to gauge interest in the school.
WILLMAR — The Willmar School Board discussed balancing financial considerations with student needs in renovating and expanding its school buildings. The board met Wednesday in a special meeting dedicated to facilities. The district will probably ask voters to pass a bond issue in a referendum to pay for a building project later this year or early next year. A task force met last fall to study at the district’s needs.
WILLMAR — After a half dozen students had their lunch trays taken away from them in line last spring, the New London-Spicer Parent Teacher Organization stepped in. The PTO donated $1,500 to help the school district feed children whose lunch accounts were in deficit, and the tray-pulling has stopped, said New London-Spicer Superintendent Paul Carlson. Last week, Willmar officials said eight trays had been pulled from senior high students since September. Montevideo has pulled two trays this school year from students whose lunch accounts were empty. As a part of the overall food service oper
WILLMAR — Learning that students can have school lunch trays taken from them if their lunch accounts are empty has struck a nerve with people who follow the West Central Tribune’s Facebook page. Dozens of people responded to posts Thursday and Monday about the issue, telling stories of their children having trays pulled from them or of seeing it happen to others. Readers also responded with letters to the editor: Letter:
WILLMAR — Maddie Stenglein was standing in line to get a cheeseburger for lunch Wednesday at Willmar Senior High when she saw a “lunch lady” take a tray out of a boy’s hands and set it aside. Stenglein, 17, said she didn’t know the boy, but she could tell he was embarrassed.
WILLMAR — Ridgewater College was buzzing with activity Thursday morning, as high school students showed off their skills in welding, photography and building computers. The 30th annual Ridgewater College Skills Fest sent kids to all corners of the Willmar campus.
WILLMAR — Area school districts work with families who are having trouble paying for their children’s school meals. Several school districts were listed in a survey released this week as having policies of withholding or taking away food from low-income students. The issue rose to national prominence recently when a Utah school was reported to have taken food trays from students in front of their peers. Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid released a survey of Minnesota school districts this week that listed nearly 50 districts that will deny food to children eligible for reduced-price meals.