May 14, 2023
Message from the Superintendent
Hello Raider Families,
In the last edition of Raider Update, I shared information about how we have proactively adjusted our finances. Today, I am sharing information about a survey we recently completed in our school district to get a sense of how individuals are feeling about the District and gauge interest in a potential operating levy referendum this fall.
The scientific survey included a random sample of 400 registered voters residing in ISD 200, who were contacted between April 13th and April 24th. The random sample was designed to provide a representation of the District's registered voters, with controls for age, gender, parent status, and voting history, among other factors.
Surveys are not new to the District and are conducted regularly as one of many ways we keep our finger on the pulse of the opinions of people from all walks of life in our District. You may recall we conducted a similar survey last year.
When it comes to how our community feels about our schools and our District, I'm pleased to say that, on the whole, our community feels strongly that we're heading in the right direction. In 2023 we received a solid 89% strongly agree or agree with the statement, "I trust the school district to do what's best for students." In 2022, respondents were given the opportunity to provide the schools with a letter grade; 65% gave an A or B. This is significantly higher than the benchmark of 44%. Our community also feels that our schools remain the backbone of the community, giving an 86% "agree" or "strongly agree" rating to the statement, "Strong public schools are directly linked to the well-being of our community."
Knowing how the community feels about the District and its schools, it comes as no surprise that community members also came in at a high number (71%) with a "likely" or "somewhat likely" response to the statement "Additional funding would allow the District to maintain current programs without having to make annual cuts." We asked about tax spending because we don't want to ask for more than taxpayers can afford.
Respondents were asked a wide range of questions about how additional funding could help our schools. When respondents were provided information that additional funding would allow for a continuation of offerings, such as options for high school students to earn college credits (76%) or to offer additional resources to students with mental or emotional health needs (74%), they were overwhelmingly in favor.
The school board was presented with this information last Wednesday. Additional information from the District's financial advisors and Legislative decisions will be presented in the coming weeks, allowing the school board to make the best-informed decision regarding our levy referendum that expires in November.
If you have questions about the District's budget situation, I invite you to visit our "micro-website" that contains information about the District's financial situation. You can find it here. The site will provide updates as our situation continues to evolve.
In addition, you may have questions about our budget. I encourage you to submit a question regarding our District's finances here.
For those who participated in the survey, thank you for your time and insights. We appreciate hearing from you.
Bob McDowell, Ed.D.
Graduating Senior Meal Account Balances
If your graduating senior leaves a balance in their meal account, it will be transferred to the next sibling in your family beginning on Friday, June 3rd. If you use auto-pay, please enter your account and turn off the auto-pay feature by Monday, May 22nd, 2023. If you do not want this transfer made, please get in touch with Andrea Seleski via email (email@example.com) by Thursday, June 1st, 2023.
Meal accounts of seniors will be closed after Friday, June 2nd, 2023, and will no longer be seen in My Payments Plus. These meal accounts are closed on this date in order to stop auto payments as the balances are transferred to siblings. However, balances can still be seen by the Food Service office until June 30th, 2023.
If the graduating senior has no sibling to transfer the balance to, please request a refund or donate it to the District Angel Fund. The District Angel Fund seeks to provide short-term assistance to families in need by covering negative meal account balances and ensuring no child goes hungry.
à Balances may be transferred to the District Angel Fund. You may send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to request this transfer. A reply will be sent after the transfer, acknowledging the donation.
- A balance refund that is over $5.00 needs a written request sent to: email@example.com
- Important: Please include your student’s name, student ID number, refund amount, and mailing address in all correspondence.
- Please call Andrea at 651-480-7050 to verify the balance left in the account.
- Refunds will be made through June 9th, 2023.
Thank you, and good luck to the Class of 2023!
Hastings Public Schools
- Kennedy Elementary (K-4) 651-480-7221
- McAuliffe Elementary (K-4) 651-480-7390
- Pinecrest Elementary (K-4) 651-480-7280
- Hastings Middle School (5-8) 651-480-7060
- Hastings High School (9-12) 651-480-7470
- Hastings Alternative Learning Center 651-480-7690
- Tilden Community Center 651-480-7670
*If you need any assistance in translating the Raider Update, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Location: 1000 11th Street West, Hastings, MN, USA