Special education students to open smoothie shop

Staff at Braham Area High School will soon have the option of choosing a custom-made smoothie for a snack.

The special education transition skills class is opening a smoothie shop for teachers during lunch on Wednesdays, High School Principal Justin Sawyer said during the School Board meeting Feb. 25.

Superintendent Greg Winter presents certificates honoring School Board members in recognition of their service. The Minnesota School Boards Association set Feb. 18-22 as School Board Recognition Week in Minnesota as a time to build awareness and understanding of the role an elected board of education plays. Photo by Elizabeth Sias

Superintendent Greg Winter presents certificates honoring School Board members in recognition of their service. The Minnesota School Boards Association set Feb. 18-22 as School Board Recognition Week in Minnesota as a time to build awareness and understanding of the role an elected board of education plays. Photo by Elizabeth Sias

The purpose is to develop job skills like planning, making change, shopping, problem solving, working with people and dealing with time constraints, Sawyer said.

The smoothie shop will also promote healthy snacks and reward students in the class. The shop will offer smoothies and vegetable juices, which will be sold only to teachers.

Sawyer said 66 percent of staff expressed interest in a smoothie shop when the class conducted a survey.

“They also talked about doing some vegetable juices, but there’s not quite as high of an interest in that,” he said. “I did have a sample of a carrot and apple blend, and it was actually pretty good. I was pleasantly surprised.”

Profits will be used for a field trip or student rewards.

Senator Sean Nienow visits

State Senator Sean Nienow, who serves on the Senate Education Committee, visited the Braham Area School Board to introduce himself during the meeting.

After the redistricting, District 32 that Nienow represents now includes Braham.

“I’m obviously familiar with the Braham area, but I have not previously represented this area before,” he said.

Nienow grew up in Stacy, Minn., but since 1989 he’s lived in Cambridge or Isanti. He served in the State Senate from 2003 to 2006, was out of office for four years, and ran again in 2010.

Braham Area Community Education receives grant

Braham Area Community Education received a grant of $5,670 from East Central Energy.

Community Education Director Cheryl Arnold said the School Readiness grant will cover the difference in cost for students receiving reduced tuition.

School Improvement Grant (SIG) update

The third and final year of the SIG is wrapping up. Funds from the grant have been approved to cover an after school remedial reading program that has already begun.

An increase in funds for parent engagement activities has also been approved.

A plan to sustain Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) after the SIG ends has also been submitted to the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE).

PLC groups will be maintained after the SIG. Teachers will continue to meet in PLC groups at both the high school and elementary school in an effort to improve teaching methods and increase student achievement.

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