Perham Focus Newsroom
Kids and parents crowded around Perham schools Tuesday morning, as the bells rang for the first time this year. That excited ‘back-to-school’ feeling was in the air, with most kids trucking into the hallways with smiles on their faces. Some anxious, near-tears kindergarteners worrying that “I don’t know where to go” were quickly calmed by paraprofessionals who stood watch outside. Administrators had reason to be happy, as well.
The Perham-Dent School Board has preliminarily approved a new General Education Levy of up to $300 per student. Board members voted in favor of the levy at a meeting last week, easily meeting a state deadline of Sept. 30. The board could still opt to under-collect and levy for less than the $300 per student maximum; the final levy amount will be determined at a later date. If the full levy is put in place, it would create about $451,000 in new annual revenue for the school district, starting in fiscal year 2015.
There’s a dark tale of murder and mystery hidden in the early history of the Perham area. In June of 1882, the bodies of two surveyors were found in the unorganized territory northeast of Perham. The 15-year-old boy accused of the crime left town and was chased by the sheriff, who finally took him prisoner in North Dakota. The boy was brought back to Perham to await trial but instead was taken from the jail and lynched during the night.
Polka Daze will soon be dancing its way into Ottertail, with festivities starting on Thursday, Sept. 5 and continuing through Saturday, Sept. 7. Fans of polka have come from miles around every year for the last four years to camp out around the ‘big yellow tent’ downtown.
Higher-than-expected enrollment of kindergarten and first grade students has led the Perham-Dent School Board to approve the hire of two new elementary school teachers. According to Heart of the Lakes Elementary School Principal Jennifer Hendrickson, 88 children were registered for kindergarten as of last week, and 92 were registered for first grade. These numbers were greater than predicted, and necessitate the addition of a fifth class for each grade level. “Eighty-five has always been our magic number where we add the fifth section” in order to keep classes from having more than 20
The Perham High School class of 1963 celebrated its 50th class reunion Aug. 16-17. Highlights of the weekend were tours of the high school led by classmate Bob Wilkowski, a...
History Mystery of the Week: Who is this woman? ‘History Mystery’ is a weekly feature of the Perham Focus. Working in partnership with the History Museum of East Otter Tail County, we will publish a ‘mystery photo’ each week, challenging you, our readers, to answer a question about it.
Through rain and hail, flickering power and tornado warnings, the New York Mills school board met as usual on Monday evening. For a large portion of the meeting, the discussion focused around the district’s bus fleet and how students would be transported this year. Transportation Supervisor Bob Theisen reported that there will now be nine bus routes, rather than 10. Even with this change, he said, students located in the district should not spend more than one hour and 45 minutes on the bus per day, following a rule created by the school boar
It sure doesn’t feel like it with these hotter-than-Hades temperatures, but it’s already time for back-to-school. In a normal year, the sweltering summer would be cooling off into a crisp autumn by now, and the leaves would be just starting to turn from green to shades of bright yellow and red. There’d be that “fall feel” and smell in the air, helping kids move on from days at the lake, emotionally preparing them for the inevitable return to academic life. Alas, not this year.
I would like to take the time to publicly thank people for their efforts in helping us with our 2013 PGI (Pyrotechnics Guild International) Convention fireworks display. Earlier this month, Tammy and I headed out east to Slippery Rock, Penn., for yet another PGI convention. Once again, this was not all fun and games, as we were asked to provide a display for the event. We were chosen to provide the opening display based on an award winning presentation two years ago in Fargo. This unique site proved to be somewhat of a challenge for the different field set that I wanted to attempt.