The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Ironwood schools receive mini-grant



Ironwood — The Ironwood Area Schools has been awarded a mini-grant from the Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative.

The $3,800 mini-grant will be used to develop a curriculum revolving around an outdoor classroom, according to information presented at the district’s Monday school board meeting.

The grant was obtained by science teacher Cheryl Jacisin, who learned about the initiative while attending a training at Michigan Tech University in September, Superintendent Tim Kolesar told the Daily Globe Tuesday.

A number of the district’s teachers will help Jacisin establish the program, which is designed to cover a variety of subjects.

The curriculum will involve grades 3-12, Kolesar said, but he hopes eventually most of the district uses it.

“I think that some of the teachers, they are the ones that are just going to spearhead (the project),” Kolesar said, “but I believe they will recruit others in the other grades to come on board. And I think once everybody sees what a few of these individuals are doing, I think you’ll find more buy-in from other people.”

Along with the teachers, there will be a number of community partners involved with the initiative, including representatives with the Keweenaw Land Association, Coleman Engineering, Master Gardeners, Gogebic Conservation District and Ottawa Nation Forest.

According to the information presented to the board, the outdoor classroom will include “an open area, a forested area and a variety of gardens focused on native plants (for example an ABC garden, a pollinator garden or Storybook garden).”

Kolesar said the program would use areas around Luther L. Wright, including planting a garden near the front of the building. The forest area would most likely be located near the north-east side of the school’s football field.

In other action, Kolesar said the board:

— Set its annual re-organizational board meeting at 5:30 p.m. on Jan. 18.

— Approved a resolution allowing local government bodies to collect summer taxes on behalf of the district.

— Accepted the resignation of Jackie Rowe as middle school volleyball coach and Brenda Schwartz as support staff for the district’s Great Start Readiness Program. The board also hired Michelle Giackino as a lunchtime behavioral support staff.

— Approved a series of budget amendments. According to information presented to the board, the district’s fund balance is projected to be $168,145.

— Gave the district’s clarinet choir $1,200 to reduce transportation costs for its trip to the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire.

— Approved a request for a bus to transport middle schoolers to a regional honors band in Maple, Wis.

— Adopted a series of strategic goals designed to reflect changes made by the state board of education.


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