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April 10, 2003 Meeting Notes

School Naming Task Force
Moorhead Area Public Schools
7:30 p.m. April 10, 2003

Members Present:

Lyn Dwyer,
Jeff Offutt,
Jeanne Aske,
Bryce Haugen,
Sandee Rasmussen,
Denise Paulson,
Maggie Rousseau,
Carol Ladwig.

Member Absent:

Mark Meister,
Steve Scheel,
Matt Naugle,
Lauri Winterfeldt-Shanks,
Brad Holschuh
Roger Erickson.

District Representative:

Dr. Larry P. Nybladh, superintendent,
Pam Gibb, communications coordinator.

Call to Order

Haugen called the meeting to order.


Task force members reviewed the minutes from the April 3 meeting. Hearing no additions or corrections the minutes stand as written.



Report on Eleanor Rushfeldt

Item tabled until next meeting.

Consensus Decision Process for Naming Facilities

Task force members shared the feedback they received related to the names Horizon, Freedom and Liberty. Aske said those she spoke with felt Freedom was a strong name. Rousseau said the students she spoke with preferred Liberty over Freedom. Haugen said high school students initially thought of Freedom as somewhat trendy because of the time period. The task force also discussed feedback related to including the community name in the school name so people know where the school is located.

The group then brainstormed a list of possible name suggestions for the middle school. From there the group determined six possible names: Freedom, Horizon, Aurora, Liberty, Explore and Voyager. Through a voting process the possibilities were narrowed to Horizon (6), Aurora (7), Explore (2) and Freedom (2). The process to select the name will be continued at the next meeting.

The task force decided to leave Red River Area Learning Center, the district's alternative program, named Red River Area Learning Center.

There was discussion about the name Probstfield and whether it should remain on the district education center, be moved to an elementary school, or not be used on any building. Feedback shared by Aske and Dwyer indicated that people felt the name should remain on the building. Rasmussen shared that other teachers she had spoken to felt it should be moved to the junior high facility, which is in the same neighborhood. She expressed concern that the connection to Probstfield Farm and the use of the K-4 curriculum would be lost if the name was not on an elementary school.

The task force members then listed possible names for the three elementary schools and the district education center as the criteria for all four buildings is to use a person's name. Names listed were Probstfield, Robert Asp, Ada Comstock, Nellie Hopkins, James Sharp, S.G. Reinertsen and Loren Douglas Hagen. There was discussion that further research should be done to find additional names for consideration at the next meeting.

Disposition of Current School Names

The task force discussed honoring the schools by displaying photos of all the district's schools at a central location. Dr. Nybladh mentioned that the district is beginning the process of collecting photos of the buildings. It was mentioned that the task force could recommend that a history be written about each school.

Discussion of Report

A draft copy of the report was shared with task force members. The report format models the format used for the community task force reports. Tentatively the task force is scheduled to present its report to the School Board on May 12.

Next Meeting

The next meeting will be at 7:30 p.m. April 17 in the Townsite Centre Board Room. The task force scheduled an additional meeting for April 24.