School board hears student concerns

This article submitted by Linda Stelling on 12/24/96.

The need for an auditorium and weight room was brought up by the Youth Advisory Council at the Dec. 17 Paynesville School Board meeting. Three times a year, the school board meets with the students to discuss issues of concern to them. Both the middle school and high school youth advisory councils expressed their support for a new weight room and the addition of an auditorium.

Board chairman Larry Fleck informed the students a meeting has been set for Feb. 10 to discuss the issues concerning a building project. Another issue which could be included at the meeting will be some remodeling of the high school. The school was built in 1969 and the high school library needs some updating.

Both the high school and middle school students requested if they couldnât get their milk in glasses instead of cartons. ãThe milk tastes like cardboard and is either frozen or warm,ä the students said.

The board informed the students that to make the switch from cartons to bulk milk, the district would need to purchase glasses and probably new milk dispensers.

One board member asked how the students would propose the milk be monitored. This would ensure that only one glass of milk be taken at meals. Mike Putzke said the milk could be handled the same as now, it would be kept inside the kitchen doorway. Anyone taking a second glass of milk couldnât do so without the computer checker seeing them, thus adding the expense to their lunch account.

The middle school students thanked the board for making the school grounds smoke free and for leaving the juice machine turned on during the day.

Other items of concern brought up by the high school members on the council dealt with the need for a second guidance counselor. The students are presently having a hard time getting in to see Mrs. Campbell because her schedule is so full.

ðCourtyard door: The students also asked about the possibility of a second door being installed to the high school courtyard, making the area more user friendly.

ðExpand lunch period five to 10 minutes longer: When the lines are long or a class runs late, students donât have enough time to eat before their next class, high school students said.

ðIssue parking tickets to teachers: When students park in the teacher area at the high school, they receive tickets or notices, but teachers never receive a ticket when they park elsewhere. The students felt the parking issue should be enforced for everyone or not at all.

This issue came as a surprise to the board members as they were not aware John Janotta, high school principal, walked the parking lot and issued tickets.

ðPay phone in high school lobby: The students said after school activities, they would like to be able to call home but canât because of the present phone system. Janotta said the last time he checked into the matter of a pay phone, it would cost the school about $29 per month. However, there would be considerable expense in switching the system over. He wasnât sure it could be done, but he would check into the matter.

Members of the Youth Advisory Council are: Ann Stalboerger, Levi Bundy, Melinda Norris, Maria Janotta, Wes Lieser, Ryan Theel, Amy Block, Mary Frandson, Mackenzie Merrill, Josh Mueller, Sarah Nelson, Mike Putzke, and Erin Zimmerman.

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