GHEC Board Considers Policy Change | News, Sports, Jobs

GRENADA — The Granada-Huntley-East-Chain School District met Thursday to conduct end-of-school-year business and prepare some policies that will impact the upcoming school year.

The board has begun considering a possible change to the middle and high school cellphone policy. In its current state, the proposed change would require high school students to store cell phones in lockers during the school day, a policy similar to that which currently applies to elementary students. Secondary students would also be required to store cellphones in lockers during class, but would be allowed to pick them up and use them during changeover and LEAP hours. Cell phone use would also be banned in restrooms and locker rooms. This revised policy would aim to reduce distractions at school and improve the mental well-being of students by limiting their access to social media.

“I look at the overall impact this is having on our teenagers and when you talk about mental health, depression and all those things, that’s my main concern,” said Superintendent Doug Storbeck.

Another possible change to the cell phone policy would require all students to keep cell phones in lockers to ensure a more consistent and streamlined application process. Any changes to the cell phone policy would be approved or denied when the school board reconvenes for its July meeting.

Moving on to activities, there are still openings in cheerleading, junior high volleyball, and junior high knowledge bowl. There have been preliminary discussions regarding the creation of a dance team, perhaps in conjunction with Fairmont area schools or independently of the Minnesota State High School League.

In May 2022, the company responsible for repairing some of the District’s Chromebooks went bankrupt, and due to the cessation of regular operations, the District is currently unable to recover the District’s 21 devices that were in its custody. . While those devices are being recovered and repaired, the resulting device shortage has forced the district to temporarily suspend its policy allowing seniors to purchase their Chromebooks after graduation.

In other cases:

— The school board resumed charging for cafeteria lunches following the expiration of a temporary program that extended the free lunch program to all students. Lunch prices may soon increase due to increased costs associated with restaurant service and the fact that prices have not been adjusted recently.

— The board accepted the resignations of elementary music teacher Kristine Schuldt and special education teacher Teri Watt.

— The board accepted the retirement of paraprofessional Sandy Steuer. Steuer retired after 20 years of service.

— The weight room is now open from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays for students in grades 6 to 12. The property’s air conditioning is now operational.

— Candidates wishing to run in the 2022 school board elections must file an affidavit of nomination between August 2 and August 16 at the district office.

— The art room has started to receive replacement cabinets and a renovation of the second floor bathrooms is planned for July.

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