Inspire 199 - January 2016
Published on Jan 28, 2016 14:35

ISD 199


Highlights of the Jan. 25 school board meeting

Paraprofessional week

The week of January 11-15 was designated Paraprofessional Recognition Week by the Minnesota Department of Education. Paraprofessionals serve our students in positions that do not require a teacher’s licensure. This evening we would formally like to recognize the 82 paraprofessionals that service our school district.

Our paraprofessionals provide services in multiple settings within our schools including support for instruction, in our media centers, in the health office, on buses and in Spartans Kids Care. These supports and services are integral to student success achievement. We are committed to excellence driven by our mission of Inspire. Innovate. Excel. A Community Commitment and recognize the role paraprofessionals play in our mission to ensure student success. 

Thank you paraprofessionals for your service to ISD 199!

Word Masters recognition

A team representing Inver Grove Heights Elementary Schools achieved Highest Honors in the recent Word Masters Challenge — a national vocabulary competition involving nearly 150,000 students annually. The third grade team scored an impressive 193 points out of a possible 200in the first of three meets this year, placing first in the nation. 

Competing in the difficult Blue Division of the Word Masters Challenge, third graders Ashley Lynner, Angelina Marino, Alyssa Olund and Jenna Schmotter each earned a perfect score of 20 on the challenge.Nationally, only 19 third graders and 52 fifth graders achieved this result. Other students from Inver Grove Heights Elementary Schools who achieved outstanding results in the meet include third graders Myles Feldman, Quynk Gingerich, Grace Ho, Kevin Moore and Wayne Seelhammer.

The Word Masters Challenge is an exercise in critical thinking that first encourages students to become familiar with a set of interesting new words(considerably harder than grade level), and then challenges them to use those words to complete analogies expressing various kinds of logical relationships. 

Working to solve the analogies helps students learn to think both analytically and metaphorically.  Although most vocabulary enrichment and analogy-solving programs are designed for use by high school students, Word Masters Challenge materials have been specifically created for younger students in grades three through eight.  They are particularly well suited for children who are motivated by the challenge of learning new words and enjoy the logical puzzles posed by analogies.


Legislative priorities

Priority #1 – financial stability:

  • Increase funding for special education in order to reduce the cross subsidy.

  • Allow locally elected school boards to renew existing operating referendum at the same level.

  • Fully fund statewide college/career readiness tests at the high school level; utilize the ACT Plus Writing as the nationally recognized college admission test.

  • Expand the allowable uses of the building lease levy to include remodeling and expansion of core facilities as well as classroom space.

  • Provide funding needed to ensure prekindergarten programs have essential components including teachers, support staff, transportation and classroom space.


Priority #1 – increase school district control and fund, or reduce, unfunded mandates:

  • Allow locally elected school boards to adopt the school calendar that best meets the needs of their students and community.

  • Allow districts the flexibility to design the early learning programs that best meet the needs of their students and families.


Action items

A.    Approval of the Award Bids for the HVAC Project.


Motion by Member Mandell and Second by Member Stensgard to accept the proposed Award Bids for the HVAC Project.


Motion carried 7-0.


B.     Approval of the Budget Guiding Change.


Motion by Member Gliva and Second by Member Hanson to accept the proposed Budget Guiding Change.


Motion carried 7-0.



Simley Theatre presents: winter one acts

A double feature night starting out with the one act play “The Lottery.”This unusual play has proven so successful it has become an internationally known classic. The play starts as people are assembling for the lottery. What family will it be this time? Which member? Only gradually do we begin to suspect the true nature of the lottery as the play builds swiftly to its crucial and moving climax.

The second feature of the night is the one act play “Take Five.” Imagine you are an actor on opening night, acting on a set that is not completed; actors who don’t show up. props either don’t work or are missing, lighting and sound cues are all off and two silly incompetent stages hands do their worst. This award winning show is filled with surprises, zany characters and pure entertainment.

The Lottery and Take Five 

  • Senior & staff preview: Thursday, Feb. 4 at 3:30 p.m.

  • Performances: Friday & Saturday, Feb. 5 & 6 at 7 p.m.

  • Sun., Feb. 7 at 2 pm

Simley High School Performing Arts Center: 2920 80th St. E., Inver Grove Heights

Tickets may be purchased online at or by calling the Community Ed office at 651-306-7870. Tickets will also be sold at the door 30 minutes prior to the show.

A night of thanks

On January 26, members of the Simley Girls hockey teams personally thanked teachers between the JV and varsity games. Each player invited a special teacher to the game.

It was a wonderful way for our student athletes to show their appreciation to just some of the fabulous teachers we are fortunate to have at Simley High School,” said hockey mom Amy Woog Patnode, who also submitted this photo.

ISD 199

Lessons in kindness

Pine Bend 5th graders recently participated in a kindness retreat. The following is a summary of the fun and exciting day by Sara Pachl's class:

“The kindness retreat was amazing,” said everyone when we got back. First when we got there we played a game so we knew almost everybody there.Then we got to get into groups to talk about unkindness.

We got back together as a group to talk about things we see at Pine Bend that shouldn’t happen. We got to play the train game too. Then we got back in our small groups and talked about things that are kind.

We got to talk about the kind things we all thought of. We took a break to have lunch and have a dance break. Then we got to sing some songs. We got back into our small groups and made a short skit on some acts of kindness. We got to have 3 groups share theirs.

The last thing we got to do was go and thank someone for what they did and someone who you need to forgive. That was our trip to the kindness retreat. Kindness has a great impact on students no matter what.


ISD 199



Engineering lessons

Pine Bend fourth graders have been learning about engineering. On Jan.22,the Science Museum of Minnesota visited the school to explore what it's like to be an engineer. They learned the engineer design process: ask,imagine, plan, create and improve. They will be venturing off to the Science Museum in February to explore the wonderful world of science.

ISD 199

Trivia and pizza at Hilltop

Thanks to the trivia know-how of their classmate Abigail Cheyka, 5th graders in Stephanie Taufen’s class at Hilltop enjoyed an Old World pizza lunch on January 25. Abigail was recently announced as her school’s winner of the 50th Anniversary of Inver Grove Heights Trivia Contest and the pizza lunch was one of her prizes.

The class also received a visit from Rep. Joe Atkins, Mayor George Tourville and Superintendent Dave Bernhardson.

Abigail also received a special pen from the Gov. Mark Dayton

ISD 199 

History and a slice at Salem Hills

5th grader Tanel Endrizzi was the Salem Hills winner of the 50th Anniversary of Inver Grove Heights Trivia Contest. As one of her prizes, Tanel and her classmates won a pizza lunch from Old World!

Additionally, Rep. Joe Atkins, Mayor George Tourville and Superintendent Dave Bernhardson visited the class to congratulate Tanel and visit with students.

ISD 199

A walk in the woods

Third, fourth and fifth graders at Pine Bend have recently been out in the school forest behind the school enjoying some snowshoeing with physical education teachers Kelly Darrow and Andrea Koch.

Darrow explains that the kids have come to love the snowshoeing unit for the activity itself, but also because it allows them to spend more time in the forest, where they’ve seen deer, countless birds and once, during a night visit, an opossum staring at them from a tree.

ISD 199

Spartan nation celebrates more all-conference announcements

Girls tennis all-conference

  • Annika Iverson
  • Britta Iverson
  • Sophia Dahlke

Girls tennis honorable mention

  • Lily David
  • Julie Malyshev

Football all-district

  • Michael Busch
  • Joe Matthews
  • Cody Albright
  • Jack Warrick

Football all-district honorable mention

  • Elliot Kirchert
  • Tyrese Beards-Borney
  • Jake Binley
  • Nathan Voegele
  • Joel Woja

Football East Metro District Offensive Player of the Year

  • Michael Busch

Volleyball all-conference

  • Chelsea Kiewel
  • Anna Scheffley

Volleyball all-conference honorable mention

  • Abby Kain
  • Kendra Sandkamp
  • Ashley Perrin

Girls soccer all-conference

  • Maria Retting, also named to an MSHSSCA All-State Team
  • Sarah Kruse
  • Lexi Muller

Girls soccer all-conference honorable mention

  • Mackenzie Sullivan
  • Melissa Tinucci

Boys soccer all-conference

  • Nathan Stone
  • Jack Stensgard
  • Jacob Myran

Boys soccer all-conference honorable mention

  • Billy Ross
  • Tyler Prifrel
  • Ryan Hostager

Cross country all-conference honorable mention

  • Ryan Berg

Girls swimming all-conference

  • Alaina Friske
  • Brittany Raab

Girls swimming all-conference honorable mention

  • Hailey Anderson
  • Emily Stang
  • Sarah Anaya