Bear Lake Board of Education extends school year

BEAR LAKE — The school year at Bear Lake Schools will be just a little longer for students following action taken this week by the board of education.bear-lake-lakers-200x167

Bear Lake Schools has accumulated eight snow days this year when school was called off due to inclement weather. That total exceeds the six days that are allowed by the state before time needs to be made up.

“We are going to hold school to make up those two extra days at the end of the year and will not be asking for a waiver,” said Cordes. “We would have had our last day on June 7, but we are adding June 8 and 11 to the calendar.”

Board members were also given a written report on Wednesday from food service director Tim Klenow on the 10 Cents A Meal for School Kids & Farms grant program. Klenow said they get reimbursed 10 cents for every Michigan food product they serve.

Klenow said they have been using lots of apples during the winter months, but have included many other items.

“We have been able to bring in even more produce than we would normally wouldn’t get because of the cost of getting everything locally,” said Klenow. “The grant has helped pay to bring in fresh broccoli, cauliflower, grape tomatoes, corn, carrots, potatoes, peppers, kale, blueberries, strawberries, cabbage, asparagus and squash.”

Klenow said Bear Lake’s food service program was reimbursed $2,000 through the grant and the money is paid at the end of the month.

“I have also sent out online surveys and have got great feedback on which Michigan produce was great and not so great,” said Klenow.

In other items, the board named John Prokes as the new junior varsity baseball coach. This year the district will be playing a junior varsity season after a several year absence of offering baseball. Bear Lake hopes to offer a varsity program in the future.

It was just a month ago that the Bear Lake Board of Education agreed to offer a baseball program, and they hadn’t had the opportunity to officially name Prokes as the coach with board action.

Bear Lake’s board also took action on how it will service buses after bus garage supervisor Troy Bialik had to take a medical leave. Since the Bear Lake, Kaleva Norman Dickson and Onekma districts all utilized the same bus service from Bialik, the buses will now  be serviced by Blarney Castle until the end of the school year.

Action was also taken at the meeting to grant Cordes the authority to sign the deed and paperwork needed to complete the sale of school property to the village. The sale has been in the works for months.

“That was executed and signed off on Wednesday morning of this week,” said Cordes.

Board members also looked at repairs that are needed for the baseball scoreboard.

“We had some quotes in that we needed a new controller replaced on it and some other things that needed fixing,” said Cordes. “The cost would be a couple thousand dollars to address everything.”

The board elected to hold off on making those repairs because there are only four home games scheduled this year and the weather is not cooperating for spring sports right now which may cause some games to be cancelled.

Cordes also discussed with the board what is transpiring in the legislature concerning school funding in the 2018-19 state budget.

“The House budget for per pupil funding is coming out and they are looking at $240 per pupil for the lower funded school districts and $120 for the higher funded ones, so for KND that is good news,” said Cordes.

What also came out of the legislative report was that school districts are watching what transpires in the right to carry guns on school grounds case that is currently being heard in the Michigan Supreme Court.

“All the schools are keeping a close watch on that case as the outcome could impact us all,” said Cordes.

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Posted by Ken Grabowski

Ken is News Advocate’s education reporter. He coordinates coverage for all Manistee County schools and West Shore Community College. He can be reached by phone at (231) 398-3125 or by email at kgrabowski@pioneergroup.com.

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