Ballard Dimensions

December 2021/January 2022

From the Superintendent's Desk

I hope your holiday season is off to a great start!


Enrollment Update

This month I want to share some timely enrollment information and interesting history. Every October 1st each school district in Iowa certifies their enrollment. Essentially, this is the number of students who reside in the district. Enrollment is important because funding is determined by the product of enrollment multiplied by the state cost per pupil. This year the amount of funding per pupil is $7,227. Ballard also reports a number of students we serve. The difference is the student served number adds the number of students open enrolled into Ballard and subtracts the students open enrolled to other districts.


Historically, Ballard has been an enrollment growing district. In 2000, Ballard served 1,304 students. This year Ballard is serving 1,796 students, an increase of nearly 500 students and an average of approximately 23 students per year. Since 2000, we have had four years of an enrollment decline and one year with single digit growth. Otherwise, Ballard has experienced double digit growth. The largest annual growth since 2000 occurred in 2007-08 with an increase of 67 students. This year saw the second largest increase of 61 students.


By comparison, nearby districts who have experienced growth since 2000 are Gilbert, Madrid, North Polk, Ankeny, and Bondurant-Farrar. North Polk, Ankeny and Bondurant-Farrar have more than doubled in that timespan. Both Bondurant-Farrar and North Polk had approximately 400 fewer students than Ballard in 2000. Districts that have declined in enrollment since 2000 are Ames, Boone, Collins-Maxwell, Nevada, and Roland-Story.


Ballard grade-level enrollment ranges between our largest class of 160 for our 7th grade and our smallest class of 115 for our 12th grade. Two of our three smallest classes are currently at the high school. I expect overall enrollment to continue increasing steadily and over the next couple of years we plan to make some interior modifications to room configurations at the elementary buildings to ensure we have adequate room capacity to accommodate our growth.


Season of Thanks

It’s always hard to believe we are reaching the midpoint of a year when December comes around. There is so much to be thankful for and the holidays are a great reminder of that. I want to lift up the efforts of our staff this year. So many of you are familiar with the challenging labor market right now and schools are not spared. Our teachers, principals, and associates are covering assignments daily that our limited substitute pool cannot cover. Custodians are putting in extra hours and our bus drivers are stepping up for one another routinely. I know many of you are experiencing similar challenges this year, as well. It would mean the world if you took a moment to say thanks to any of our staff you encounter.


In closing, thank you for your support of our students and staff. We are blessed with a tremendous community at Ballard and I wish you the very best for a joyous holiday season and a Happy New Year. GO BOMBERS!


Ottie


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West Elementary News

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STEM education at West

For the past 6 years, Kindergarten students at Ballard West have been able to have STEM lessons each week. Ballard West received the Governor’s STEM Grant in 2016 to implement Project Lead the Way. This program allows me, as the ELP (Extended Learning Program) teacher, to not only give kindergarteners some solid STEM education, but it also allows me to observe and get to know students as they begin their time at Ballard. This has also proven to be very helpful as I work with students who I see in ELP.

As educators, we are given the charge to educate students for careers that don’t yet exist- technology and the world around us is changing and moving so rapidly that one of our greatest challenges is to teach students how to be prepared for their world in 13 years when they graduate. We strive to teach them many different ways to think- to explore- and to design. We desire to influence the next generation and has proven to be an excellent addition to the CORE curriculum!

Submitted by Stephanie Zielke, West Elementary TAG Teacher

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East Elementary News

East Elementary Vocal Concerts

Ballard East Vocal Concerts will be on Thursday, December 16, 2021 @ The Ballard High School Auditorium!


3rd grade @ 5:30 pm

4th grade @ 6:30 pm

5th grade @ 7:30 pm


If you have any questions, please contact Mrs. Mindy DeVries at mdevries@ballard.k12.ia.us

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Middle School News

Bomber Three Award Winners

The Bomber Three Award Winners were chosen by teachers and staff as students that consistently show our Bomber Three: Respect, Responsibility, and Self-Control.

Character Award Winners

Multiple students were nominated by teachers and staff for awards based on various positive characteristics that make a positive difference at Ballard Middle School.

High School News

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ACT Testing at Ballard

We will be offering the ACT at Ballard High School on Saturday, April 2. This is a national testing date and will be the only testing date offered at Ballard High School for the 2021-2022 school year.


Please go to ACT.org to register for the ACT test. To register for the Ballard testing site, use the Test Center Code 252110. This Test Center Code will only be offered to 9th-12th grade Ballard students. The test fee of $60 (ACT without the writing portion) or $85 (ACT with the writing portion) is due at the time of registration. Test fee assistance for juniors and seniors from Ballard High School is available upon request. The deadline for registering for the April 2 test is February 25.


If you have any questions or are in need of test fee assistance, please email Lisa Doland at ldoland@ballard.k12.ia.us

Academic Awards Night

On Tuesday, October 5th, Ballard High School celebrated our Academic Achievements from the 2020-2021 school year including National Honor Society induction, department Academic Achievement awards, and Academic Letters. Congratulations to all of our hard working students!


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Activities Department

Digital Ticketing and Activity Pass Information

The Ballard 2021-2022 activity season will see a few changes for the upcoming year. Admission prices for high school events will be $6.00 for K-12 students and adults. Admission prices for middle school events will be $4.00 for K-12 students and adults. These prices were adopted by the Raccoon River Conference and approved by the Board of Education.


DIGITAL TICKETING

New this year, patrons will be able to purchase tickets online for individual home events or any road Raccoon River Conference event. To purchase tickets online, please CLICK here. Cash sales are still available at the gate.


ACTIVITY PASSES

Ballard activity passes are back for the 2021-22 season. Passes provide a cost savings for those who wish to attend multiple events throughout the year. Activity passes must be purchased online and passes will be sent to you directly through email.

Student Passes - $60.00 ( CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE)

Adult Passes - $100.00 ( CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE)


RESOURCES

Quick Start Guide
Buying Tickets and Checking in Tutorial