Student presentations highlight W-MU's monthly board meeting
By TRISHA PHELPS
Mt. Pleasant News
WINFIELD — Student achievement and participation highlighted the discussions at the Winfield-Mt. Union School Board meeting on Wednesday, March 13.
Shelby Therme, junior, and Jake Edwards, junior, gave a presentation to the board, highlighting their experience at EmPower U, a program organized by Southeastern Community College to encourage students to become active members of their community.
The students spent time at Camp L-Kee-Ta getting to know other students attending the program and then went to SCC for a presentation about leadership. The program prepared them for Great River Region Days, where they would have the opportunity to speak with area government officials about topics that interested them.
“I learned a lot that day and I think it helped me in the process of becoming a leader,” said Edwards. “We have 14 meetings and only about four left. They have all been super fun.”
“Each class we went to was in a different place in southeast Iowa, and each time we had a different topic that we went over,” said Therme. “It was really cool that we were able to go to different places and see the different things that southeast Iowa has to offer and being able to go around the area and meet other people that we wouldn’t normally be able to meet in things like sports.”
The students also broke into groups to discuss a local government issue.
“My group’s issue was the gas tax,” said Edwards. “During the preparation to make our speech, we got to talk to legislators, truck drivers and even the department of transportation. Our group was in favor of increasing the gas tax, about a 10-cent increase to go towards improving the roads and bridges to improve people’s safety and also to create more jobs.”
When Great River Region Days came, the students got to tour the capitol.
“It was pretty awesome,” said Edwards. “We made our speeches in a small room filled with legislators. I thought our speech went pretty good and I think we may have gotten through to them. It was a really nice experience and I learned a lot.”
“Being able to talk to legislators and senators in Des Moines was really cool because we got to talk about what we thought needed to be done,” added Therme.
Another student who was highlighted at the board meeting was Lexis Tran, a fourth grader, who entered in an Old Creamery Theater writing contest and won second place. Her story was one of six that was selected for the theater to use as a performance piece in their traveling theater group.
Aimee Wedeking, W-MU Elementary principal informed the board that each year the theater gets many entries in the writing contest and that having a piece be selected by the theater is an accomplishment. “We have had a lot of winners, which is exciting,” said Wedeking.
Old Creamery Theater will be performing for the students on Thursday at the school.
The board also:
• Set a public hearing of April 10 at 6:30 p.m. for their 2013/2014 budget.
• Approved the early start date of Aug. 20 for the 2013/2014 school year.
• Considered course description handbook.
• Approved the resignation of Mark Begey, high school social studies teacher and coach.
• Approved the hiring of Kenton Klopfenstein for high school baseball coach.
The next school board meeting is April 10 at 6:30 p.m. in the school media center.