Robotics teams on to national tournament

Two robotics teams from Minneapolis public schools advanced to the FIRST Robotics national competition in Atlanta this weekend.

The Minneapolis Washburn High School Millerbots and Patrick Henry High School Herobotics teams were among 102 teams from around the state who competed at the Minnesota Regional FIRST Robotics Competition on April 2-4. Minneapolis high school teams make up two of the five teams from the state who are headed to Atlanta.

Ken Rosen , assistant regional director of Minnesota FIRST Robotics, praised teachers at both schools for introducing students from low-income families to electrical and mechanical engineering.

Washburn's team is coached by teachers Sara Etzel and Peter Grul. Patrick Henry's team is coached by teacher Shabaka McKey.

Teams from Bloomington Jefferson, Eagan and Prior Lake high schools also advanced to the national competition.



Weigh in on proposed changes to schedules

The Anoka-Hennepin School District is holding public meetings to discuss proposals to change class schedules at its high schools.

The high schools now use a block plan, which divides the school day into four periods and the school year into semesters. Each class lasts about an hour and a half.

A district task force has been studying two other plans that split the school year into trimesters. One would divide the school day into five periods; the other would divide it into six. Both plans would also stretch out courses further into the year.

All the public meetings start at 7 p.m.:

• April 29 at Blaine High School, 12555 University Av. NE., Blaine.

• April 30 at Coon Rapids High School, 2340 Northdale Blvd., Coon Rapids.

• May 5 at Champlin Park High School, 6025 109th Ave. N., Brooklyn Park.

• May 6 at Anoka High School, 3939 7th Av. N., Anoka.

• May 7 at Andover High School, 2115 Andover Blvd., NW., Andover.