Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

Will It Pass? - Looking at school district referendums: Northland PinesSubmitted: 02/07/2013
Story By Lex Gray & Kira Lynne

Will It Pass? - Looking at school district referendums: Northland Pines
EAGLE RIVER - When you step into a Northland Pines school, you'll see laptops, iPads, and Chromebooks.

"I would say within five years, we may not even see a textbook in the the classroom anymore," Superintendent Mike Richie said. "It's going to be chromebooks, it's going to be ipads, and those kinds of things."

Even the schools themselves look shiny and new.

So you might ask yourself: why is this district asking taxpayers for more money?

Superintendent Mike Richie says there are a few answers to that question.

One goes all the way back to the early 90s, when the state funding formula started to change.

"That first base year to figure out what the cap would be for each district, it was actually based off the prior year. So any district in the state that was very frugal or did a great job with their tax levy was actually punished for future years," Richie said.

And Pines is frugal. The district stretched their last three year referendum to four years.

And this time, they're asking for $2.7 million per year instead of $2.9 million.

But there are still budget issues they can't get around.

Transportation costs are a huge issue here. While other districts are more compact, Northland Pines covers a large area, and that's why they spend $1.3 million per year just getting kids to and from school.

Any sympathy from the state? Not here.

"That is the problem I have with the funding formula," Richie said. "They don't take into account the makeup of the district and the difference that one district may have over another district."

And that's why Northland Pines is asking YOU to see the difference…and make sure they can stay ahead of the curve.

Technology director Scott Foster says it's not just about having the latest tech toys. Next year, the district may add Chinese language classes.

"We really emphasize providing a 21st century education for our students and connecting them to the global society. And with technology, we're allowed to do that," Foster said.

But even closer to home, technology matters.

"If a community member reflects on their job now even compared to five years ago... there isn't a job out there that hasn't been impacted by technology in any way," Foster said.

And in the long run, technology should save time. And time saves money.

It always comes across as expensive. But really, if you're enacting technology properly, you should be doing it do gain efficiencies in our instruction or the way we do our jobs here as educators.

Pines hosted informational meetings in January and posted slideshows, videos and flyers online. It's a lot of information. But what Richie really wants you to remember?

"This referendum is about what makes this school district a quality school district," Richie said.

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

RHINELANDER - A class of second graders at Crescent Elementary School in Rhinelander turned a lesson plan into a life lesson. The students helped provide clean water to villages in Africa after learning about pollution.

"They couldn't believe kids their age didn't have access to a faucet with running water," said Prom.

"A lot of people walk a lot of hours to get their water," said eight- year- old Ava Sadak.

The class decided to take action. They raised money for three weeks during their lunch break.

+ Read More

Play Video

EAGLE RIVER - People living in Eagle River could see a dog park sometime in the near future. 

"It'll take some work to get it done, but I think in the long run, once it's done it'll be very good for the community and it'll be very well used," said Ron Kressin, who's leading the project. 

+ Read More

RHINELANDER - A Minocqua man pleaded not guilty Thursday to a murder from 1982. 

Robin Mendez was charged with homicide in February in the death of his wife. 

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Rubber gloves, a fingerprinting kit, and evidence bags all made it look like a serious crime happened in a room on the Nicolet College campus in Rhinelander on Thursday morning, but Kobe Gallion was pretty much just playing pretend.

"Yeah, it's fun," Gallion said of the investigative work.  "It's like a big puzzle, really, that's all."

The Crandon High School senior worked with classmates to take blood samples and lift fingerprints at Nicolet's "Crime Scene Investigation" station while competing against another school.

+ Read More

Play Video

PRICE COUNTY - Price County blames 43 years of road salt for a high-traffic bridge starting to fall apart.

Corrosion has eaten away at the Highway H bridge over the Elk Lake Chain in Phillips, and work started Tuesday to replace an aging bridge deck.

Price County Highway Commissioner Don Grande often got calls about the condition of the bridge.

"I would say right now it's weekly," he estimated. "'Hey, when are you going to fix that bridge? What's going on with that bridge? Why does the bridge look so bad?'"

+ Read More

RHINELANDER - Earth Day can be a good time to reflect on the "health" of the world around you.

Nicolet College's Sustainability Fair focuses on all things green this weekend.

This year's theme is Sustainability where you would least expect to find it.

There will be about 40 booths at the fair ranging from gardeners to investment brokers…and even green funerals.

+ Read More

MADISON - The state Department of Justice will prosecute a Taylor County sheriff's detective for releasing records of two unsolved murders to producers of a national television show.

Sergeant Steven Bowers is accused of felony misconduct in public office.

Under the law, police records are public, but authorities often withhold them on grounds they could compromise an ongoing investigation.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 





Click Here