Urdahl, NLS board member announce resignations
NEW LONDON -- Monday's New London-Spicer School Board meeting saw the resignations of a long-time teacher and a long-time school board member. The school board accepted "with regrets" Dean Urdahl's letter of retirement. He has taught in the distr...
NEW LONDON -- Monday's New London-Spicer School Board meeting saw the resignations of a long-time teacher and a long-time school board member.
The school board accepted "with regrets" Dean Urdahl's letter of retirement. He has taught in the district for 35 years and his retirement is effective June 30. Urdahl, R-Grove City, is the state representative for District 18B.
He wrote in a letter dated Feb. 24 that he is leaving for several reasons, including the difficulty in managing his commitments to teaching and being a state representative.
"I don't believe that the administration understands or appreciates the potential benefits that having a state representative on staff can achieve," Urdahl wrote.
He also wrote that he has enjoyed his time as an instructor at NLS and said it "has been a tremendous place to spend my entire teaching career."
Urdahl teaches seventh grade history. He also had coached NLS girls cross country and announced last fall he was retiring from coaching.
He is in his second term as a representative.
At the end of Monday's meeting, the board was informed that board member Wayne Friedrich would be resigning from the School Board, effective immediately.
Friedrich served on the board for 11 years, retiring in 2002. He decided to run for School Board again in 2004, was elected and was in the second year of his four-year term.
"I find that my commitments to my family and the school district has come into conflict, leaving me no other option than to make a choice," Friedrich wrote in a letter to the board dated Feb. 27, which was read by board chairwoman Karen Nelson.
After the meeting, Friedrich said he has been thinking about resigning the past six months. He said the resignation was family-related, but declined to give more details.
Friedrich missed seven of the School Board's 20 regular meetings last year and has missed one this year. He said last week family illness, work and being sick prevented him from attending some meetings.
In his letter he talked about having a loving and understanding family. Friedrich is married with two grown daughters.
"They have always supported me and unselfishly gave up precious time with them while I pursued various endeavors," Friedrich wrote.
Board members Nelson, Mike O'Brien and Robert Moller each thanked Friedrich for his service over the years.
"I wish you well and regret that you have chosen to resign," Nelson said.
Also at the meeting, the board voted 6-0 to direct the administration to make recommendations for reductions in programs and positions for the 2006-07 school year. Board member Greg Hedman was absent.
The finance committee estimates that the district will need to cut $130,000 to $150,000 next school year to compensate for a projected loss of 25 students, Moller said.
Last year, the district cut more than $186,000 from the budget and has had to make more than $200,000 worth of cuts in the past.
"It's less than ($200,000), but at the same time we're still making cuts," Moller said.
In other business, the board:
- Heard a proclamation signed by the mayors of Spicer and New London declaring the week of Feb. 27 School Board Recognition Week. The proclamation is part of the Minnesota School Boards Association's promotion of school board recognition week across the state.
"We urge all citizens to join us in recognizing the dedication and hard work of local school board members," the proclamation reads. "Furthermore, we urge all citizens to work with the board to build an education system that meets the needs of both today's and tomorrow's children."
- Heard a presentation on Early Childhood Family Education and school readiness programs.
- Heard about the goals Schools for Equity in Education has this legislative session.