Middle schoolers highlight their clubs at East Grand board meeting
The East Grand School District board held its first community board meeting of the year, where it convenes for a regular meeting in one of the district’s schools. Members gathered in the East Grand Middle School library Jan. 17.
East Grand Middle School Principal Jenny Rothboeck introduced a few middle school students to the board to talk about their clubs. The school started allotting homeroom time twice a week for newly-formed clubs so all the students could be more involved in extracurriculars.
“We talked a lot about how to keep kids engaged and empowered in the middle school,” Rothboeck said. “We did this whole audit of every single thing we do in the middle school … and the thing that rose to the top as being the most engaging and empowering were extracurricular activities.”
The school’s clubs include an AV club, study hall, yearbook, newspaper, volleyball, ski tuning, martial arts, music, LGBTQ+, knitting, graphic design, a student leadership club called CLAW, a hunting, fishing and camping club, and a board game club.
Two students in the music club spoke first to the board, saying the club gave them dedicated time to practice playing their favorite instruments — the piano and saxophone. They said the room can be chaotic with multiple musicians playing at once, but they take turns using a storage room as a private practice room.
Eighth grade student Morgan Huntington talked about the martial arts club taught by her math teacher, Alicia Scott. Huntington said she decided to join the club because she wanted to learn self-defense, and there are around 10 kids in the club.
“I just like getting to know different people,” Huntington said. “It was interesting to see … other kids and why they wanted to do it.”
Isaac Spafford and Reese Avila spoke about their experiences in the newspaper and yearbook clubs respectively. Spafford passed around a copy of the newspaper and said the students in the club include news writing as well as creative writing in the publication. He said it took the club a month and a half to finish their first edition and distribute it to the student body.
“We are coming up with a new one soon,” Spafford said. “We just got new people in the club. We want to try out some new things with this one.”
Avila showed the board one of the yearbook pages she put together about the cross-country team. She said she is working on pages about Nordic skiing and girls basketball. The club will complete the yearbook before spring break to have it ready at the end of the year.
“Why I joined — I just love photography,” Avila said. “I always love taking pictures, and I really like working with computers, so it was a great combination.”
- The board approved the minutes of its Jan. 3 meeting.
- Board President Ed Raegner talked to the members about the Board of Education Scholarship, which he said members usually contribute $100 each towards. The scholarship fund has over $2,000 from extra bond funds, but Raegner asked the members to still contribute.
- Todd Raper and Colleen Kaneda from Dynamic Program Management gave an update on the district’s construction projects.
- Superintendent Brad Ray said Middle Parks Electric has agreed to contribute $200,000 for the district’s acquisition of electric buses, spoke about a recent meeting he had with county and town managers and said the district has gotten interest in recent requests for proposals for strategic planning and school information system services.
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