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School districts rely on state and local funding to support and maintain their schools. On November 5, 2019, Fridley Public Schools will ask its community to approve an operational levy referendum. Funds from operational levies are used to support academic programs for students, staffing and student support services such as social emotional learning and mental health services.
Referendum Question: Revoke the district's existing referendum revenue authorization of $187.43 per pupil and replace it with a new authorization of $497.43 per pupil. The proposed referendum would increase each year by the rate of inflation and be applicable for 10 years.
Each year, the Fridley-Columbia Heights Rotarians visit the classrooms of Stevenson and Hayes Elementary Schools to deliver a special gift - dictionaries for every third grader at Fridley Public Schools. All students received their own copy of “A Student’s Dictionary” on October 9, 2019, books that were generously donated by the club.
“One of Rotary International's missions is the encouragement of literacy,” said Rotarian Bob Tholkes, who participates in this project each year. “Dictionary donation as a means of achieving our literacy mission has been widespread among Rotary clubs for many years.”
In the age of technology and electronics, Tholkes admitted that the Rotary Club has debated continuing the donations in the face of the development of online learning, but the value of possessing a hard copy book still remains.
“It’s also very rewarding since it gives us an opportunity to personally interact with students from the area - something we very much enjoy doing,” said Tholkes. “And we are able to introduce ourselves and the club to parents and teachers in the community.”
Along with Tholkes, Fridley Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Kim Hiel distributed the books with Fridley Community Education Senior Programs, Adult Enrichment and Facilities Coordinator Maggie Chandler and Rotarians Fred Bischke, Katie Johnson, Steve Klaers, Craig Malm, and Greg Schraufnagel.
The third grade students eagerly wrote their names in the dictionaries and quickly thumbed through the book to seek out the longest word in the English language. The young scholars were also excited to read the biographies of United States presidents, practice sign language, and view the map of the seven continents.
Fridley Public Schools will have an operating levy on the November 5, 2019 ballot. The school district is seeking additional funding to support academic programs that enhance and enrich student learning, strengthen student support services that include social emotional learning and mental health, and support current class sizes and staffing levels. The current operating levy is set to expire in 2025 and the district will ask its voters to revoke and replace it with a new levy authorization.
For parents and community members to learn more about the operating levy, the district is hosting a second informational session.
Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2019
Time: 6:00 - 7:00 PM
Location: Fridley District Auditorium, 6000 West Moore Lake Drive, Fridley, MN 55432
This is a free event that does not require reservations. All parents and community members are invited to attend. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or click here to learn more.