Moorhead Area Public Schools' District Blog

March, 2011Archive for

Preparation key to continuous improvement

Thursday, March 31st, 2011

Our role this spring is one of preparation. We continually plan to improve the Moorhead Area Public Schools’ programs, and we’ve spent time during the last few months planning and preparing for next school year.

One quote I especially like is this one from General Colin Powell: “There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure.” It is preparation that is so important to the success of each school year. Our teachers have been working hard as we prepare for Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments, continued learning and the end of the school year. We also work toward an environment where it is permissible to take risks, perhaps fail, but always learn from our failures and improve what we do every day.

We have worked all year long, not just for the state tests that will be taken in next few weeks, but also to make sure our students are growing and improving. The real test is whether we can take a child from wherever he is when he comes to us and move him beyond that point in nine months. That is how long students are in school each year. Some students may progress academically nine, ten, even 12 months in the same timeframe.

We are challenged to do that every day in all the schools across our district. As the year speeds to a close, we do not want to have parents, administrators, teachers or students thinking that because state testing is here we will stop teaching. We still have much to do and more instructional time ahead.

Another way we are preparing is for the threat of another flood event. We have prepared contingency guidelines, worked with county and city officials to offer support in the community effort and prepared our administrators to deal with issues that may arise. We hope our community responds during this time by volunteering and helping our community prepare for this event.

We are also preparing for next school year. We are evaluating programs and determining the programs we will continue, expand or start. We look at registration numbers and state requirements to help determine program changes. In all this work, we need to make sure our students are prepared for their future.

It is up to all of us to work together as a strong community to help prepare for any tests that come our way, whether they be tests of a spring flood, the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments, or our students’ futures. We can work together to provide strong schools and strong communities.

Dr. Lynne A. Kovash
Moorhead Area Public Schools

Reinertsen students learn about properties of clay dikes during art

Thursday, March 31st, 2011

In March, fourth-grade students at S.G. Reinertsen Elementary School used both

S.G. Reinertsen students and Mayor Mark Voxland build channels from blue sand, topsoil and clay as part of an experiment during art.

science standards and art standards to complete a clay project that reinforces what they learned regarding soil types. Special guests, including the superintendent, mayor and School Board members, joined the students for the project.

First the students conducted an experiment to learn what soil types are best when it comes to building a dike. The objective was that students would understand why clay is used to build dikes and why sand is contained in bags. The students created three channels — one made of sand, one of topsoil and one of clay. Pouring water down the channels caused the sand and topsoil channels to erode.

Students then made clay tiles with a meandering river down the center. Texture was added to portions of the tile to represent the houses and businesses in the city.

Moorhead High’s award-winning speech team hosts open house March 31

Monday, March 28th, 2011

The National Forensics League recently recognized the Moorhead High Speech Team for Excellence in Speech with the Team Sweepstakes Award at the Northern Lights District tournament held on March 10-12 in Grand Rapids, Minn.

Moorhead qualified eight speakers for the National Forensics League Speech Tournament in Dallas in June. The following students won the opportunity to represent the best of Minnesota Speech at the national meet: Humorous Interpretation – Trevor Larson, Dramatic Interpretation – Chino Farok, Amanda Casselton and Drew Lausch, Dramatic Duo – Nina Grollman and Sam Wisenden, and Extemporaneous Speaking – Seiko Shastri and Sam Benson. The team is coached by Rebecca Meyer-Larson.

The public is invited to see some of Minnesota’s finest public speakers at the Speech Open House at 6 p.m. March 31 at Moorhead High School. Admission is $5 and includes a dessert reception.

School Boards hold second joint meeting

Friday, March 25th, 2011

School Board members from Moorhead, Fargo and West Fargo received an update on the on-time graduation initiative during the districts’ second joint board meeting on March 21 at Bluestem Center for the Arts.

Dr. Lynne Kovash, Moorhead superintendent, Dr. Rick Buresh, Fargo superintendent, Dr. David Flowers, West Fargo superintendent, and Tom Hill, United Way, shared the work being done related to on-time graduation rates. The districts have identified on-time graduation as a community-wide concern, and the three School Boards passed a joint resolution last April.

Efforts to improve graduation rates will focus on preschool literacy and family engagement. The five community strategies for students are: enter school ready to learn, read proficiently by the end of third grade, transition successfully between elementary and middle school and middle and high school, graduate from high school on time, and graduate career and college-ready.

The School Boards and administrators discussed setting a community-wide goal for graduation and a measure for graduation rates, acknowledging the difficulty in measuring graduation rates the same way in all three districts.

Dave Lawrence named Minnesota Assistant Principal of the Year

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011
Dave Lawrence, Moorhead High School assistant principal, has been named the Minnesota Assistant Principal of the Year by the Minnesota Association of Secondary School Principals (MASSP). The State and National Assistant Principal of the Year program recognizes outstanding middle level and high school assistant principals who have demonstrated success in leadership, curriculum and personalization.

“Dave is very deserving of this award,” said Dr. Lynne Kovash, superintendent of Moorhead Area Public Schools. “His commitment to students and their learning is outstanding. He is a leader in our district who helps us stay current in the field of education.”

“I am very honored to be recognized,” Lawrence said. “This award is as much a reflection of the great things happening at Moorhead High as anything I have done.”

Lawrence has been an assistant principal at Moorhead High School since the 2003-04 school year. Prior to that he worked as a middle level assistant principal for the district.

Read the full article at

Moorhead High boys hockey team advances to state

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

The Moorhead High School boys hockey team defeated Bemidji 2-0 last night to win the Class 2A Section 8 boys hockey championship and advance to the state tournament. Read The Forum article at

Annual Gardening Seminar features Eric Bergeson

Tuesday, March 1st, 2011

Moorhead Community Education, Master Gardeners of Clay County and University of Minnesota Extension Clay County are hosting the annual spring Gardening Seminar titled “Green, Growing and Grand” on Saturday, March 12 from 9 a.m.–3:30 p.m. at Horizon Middle School.

This year’s gardening seminar features Eric Bergeson, owner of Bergeson Nursery and a perennial favorite for the garden seminar.

The seminar also includes vendors, informative speakers and door prizes. Sessions include container vegetable gardening, floral design trends, wine making with local fruit, butterfly gardening, garden soils, square foot gardens and much more.

A fee of $33 ($29 for Moorhead School District residents) covers the presentations, refreshments and a lunch buffet. Pre-registration is required. Registration deadline is March 9. For more information or to register with a credit card, call Moorhead Community Education at 218-284-3400 or register online at