South metro school briefs: ISD 199 again loses tech levy

  • April 4, 2012 - 3:16 PM


ISD 199 again loses tech levy

For the second time in less than six months, voters in Inver Grove Heights have turned down a request to spend millions of dollars to purchase technology for the school district.

The Dakota County elections office reports that Independent School District 199 lost its bid for the levy, 1,614 to 845, in the March 27 special referendum. The levy, if it had passed, would have allowed the district to collect a total of $7 million over the next 10 years, or $700,000 a year.

The district said it would have used the money to pay for software, maintenance and hardware such as computers and iPads.

The defeat came five months after voters rejected a similar request in November. School officials have not said if or when they plan to seek another technology levy.

The district has been paying for technology from general fund money. The levy would have allowed the district to shift that money from technology to other uses.

West St. Paul

Students volunteer to 'Make a Difference'

Hundreds of middle school students in West St. Paul made a big difference last week.

Students at Friendly Hills Middle School took part in a variety of charitable activities as part of the annual Make a Difference Day.

Fifth-grade students focused on clean water and on keeping pollutants out of the Mississippi River. Teachers offered lessons on water and pollution in classes. Students picked up 38 bags of trash in the surrounding community to prevent it from being washed into storm drains and reaching the river.

Sixth-graders held two fundraisers for Neighbors Inc., collecting food items and money for the non-profit. Students collected more than 2,000 items and raised $1,010.

Seventh-graders volunteered at Feed My Starving Children in Eagan. Students learned about the conditions children face in countries around the world, the effects of malnutrition and the lives lost every year due to starvation. The students packed 35,856 meals, enough to feed 99 children for one year.

Eighth-graders had two causes: Little Dresses for Africa and Walk for Water. In Walk for Water, students walked 3.5 miles while carrying six liters of water in backpacks, to represent the average distance Third World children walk on a daily basis to provide water for their families. Students raised about $1,400 total from corporate sponsors.

The kids also made 76 dresses out of pillow cases that will be distributed by the organization Little Dresses for Africa to girls in orphanages, churches and schools there.

This was the third year for the Make a Difference Day program at the school.


Tutors needed for Mn Reading Corps

The Lakeville school district is looking for people to serve as reading tutors at various schools as part of the Minnesota Reading Corps.

Among the openings: two part-time jobs at Christina Huddleston Elementary; one full-time tutor at John F. Kennedy Elementary; two part-time posts at Lakeview Elementary; one full- and one part-time at Oak Hills Elementary; and one full-time opening at Orchard Lakes Elementary.

Minnesota Reading Corps is the country's largest state AmeriCorps program. It will train and place more than 1,000 literacy tutors in schools across the state to guide struggling students to becoming successful readers by the end of third grade.

Each job includes a living stipend of about $250 biweekly, an education award of $2,775, and other benefits if eligible. Tutors serve 11 months as AmeriCorps members beginning in August. To learn more or apply, go to www


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