ISD 709 News 6/11/21

From Superintendent John Magas

Dear Families,

This week we honored our graduating seniors, held end of the year celebrations for students and families and began transitions to summer programming. Being part of those celebrations was the highlight of this year for me, especially the high school commencements. Best wishes to our Class of 2021 and best hopes as they begin the next phase of their lives.

We are ending one school year and preparing to begin anew in the fall, with hopes that the pandemic, and all the challenges associated with it, is behind us.

This has been a year unlike any other and has required all of us to address incredibly difficult and in some cases exhausting challenges. My hope for students, families and staff, is that you are able to find time this summer to rest, restore and, like our seniors, prepare for new journeys ahead.

We’ve learned so much over the past year that can help us build back better: in our planning, the way we provide support for students and the tools we have to support their education. I’m excited about the coming school year and look forward to continue working together to ensure the success of all students.

With deep respect and appreciation,

John Magas

If you have questions or thoughts about what's going on in our school district, email: Superintendents@isd709.org

Congratulations, Class of 2021!

Members of the Class of 2021 – we are proud of you and wish you the very best as you leave Duluth Public Schools and enter a new phase in your life's journey.

Many thanks to Duluth Public Schools families, for everything they do to provide for their child's education. To the teachers, staff and volunteers for their support for students at every level, and to those who spent many hours creating these graduation celebrations. And most especially we extend thanks and good wishes to graduates of Denfeld, Duluth East, the Adult Learning Center, Area Learning Center, Transition 12 Program and Academic Excellence Online HS (AEO) for their resilience, courage and hard work, in a year like no other.

Denfeld High School Graduation Ceremony - Recording

ALC, ABE, Transition 12 Virtual Graduation

AEO Virtual Graduation

Duluth News Tribune - Graduation, Denfeld High School

Duluth News Tribune - Graduation, Duluth East High School

KQDS TV21 - Graduation, Denfeld High School

KQDS TV21 - Graduation, Duluth East High School

Photos: JP Rennquist, Duluth East HS, Duluth News Tribune, ALC


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Free Summer Tutoring Available

Free tutoring for K-12 students is available through the CSS/ISD 709 Tutor Program. We have tutors in most grade levels and subjects. They've completed training and are ready to work with Duluth students!

Click here to book tutoring appointments.

  • Once there you will be able to choose the grade level needed, the content, the tutor and the time they are available.
  • Once you book a tutoring session you will receive an email with the details of your appointment.
  • Appointments are online. A link to the video conference session will be sent with the email.

If you have any questions please feel free to email Beth LaVigne blavigne@css.edu

Free Summer Meals for Children

Free Grab & Go Breakfast & Lunch Available to Students Through the Summer! Bagged meals available weekdays to students 18 years of age and younger. No paperwork necessary. Any student can pick up a meal at any location. Parents/Guardians can pick up the bagged meal without students present.

  • Meal service will pause June 11 and resume June 21.
  • Free grab & go summer meals begin June 21 and run through August 20, 2021
  • No meal service July 5
  • Distribution at the following school sites:

School Locations 11:00AM – 12:30PM

Homecroft Elementary, 4784 Howard Gnesen Road

Laura MacArthur Elementary, 720 N. Central Avenue

Lester Park Elementary, 5300 Glenwood Street

Myers-Wilkins Elementary, 1027 N. 8th Avenue East

Piedmont Elementary, 2827 Chambersburg Avenue

Stowe Elementary, 715-101st Avenue W.

Denfeld High School, 401 N. 44th Avenue W.

Distribution sites are selected based on USDA Summer Meal program requirements.

Updates posted at ISD709.org/Food4Kids

Questions? 218-336-8707. This institution is an equal opportunity provider

Sources of Wellness: Summer Suggestions

For our final Sources of Wellness edition we are highlighting suggestions for summer to ensure our students return to school in the fall ready and prepared to learn and excel in a post-pandemic world.

This summer is an opportunity to reset and refuel. Transitions can be difficult, especially after a year like this one. What we know is that kids still need to be and feel safe, they need social interaction, they need alternatives to screen time, they may need to catch up academically and most importantly, they need to have fun. If students are struggling with mental health challenges, it is a good time to connect with a mental health professional. Local resources are linked below.

Thank you for reading and participating in our Sources of Strength and Sources of Wellness activities this year. We hope you have a wonderful summer and remember to stay safe, have fun and lean into your strengths!

Conversation Starters:

  • What are three things that you are most excited about this summer?

  • If you could spend a week with any relative or friend this summer, who would you stay with and what would you do together?


  • Make a bucket list of summer activities that you would like to do as a family and make a concerted effort to make them happen.

  • Provide opportunities to build social connections with family, friends, and groups such as sports teams, clubs, or other organized groups.

  • Maintain physical and mental wellness through daily mindfulness and exercise.

  • Engage in service through helping others and volunteering.

  • Remember, what you eat affects how you feel physically and emotionally. Pack a healthy picnic and head to your favorite park or lake.


School Board Candidate Filing Period June 1 - 15

Duluth School Board Candidate Filing Information is available at ISD709.org/SchoolBoard

Serving as a school board member is an important responsibility, helping to establish educational standards that will affect the future of Duluth’s students, community and society.

--Four seats on the Duluth School Board are up for election. Those intending to run must file an affidavit for candidacy.

--Candidate filings open Tuesday, June 1, 2021 (8:00 a.m.) and close Tuesday, June 15, 2021 (4:00 p.m.). The last day to withdraw is Thursday, June 17th (5:00pm).

In The News

Duluth News Tribune - "Carmen Gordon, 18, is a senior at Denfeld High School and is a member of the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa. She’s been jingle dress dancing since she was about 14 years old. After the past year, Denfeld and the whole world has had, Carmen wanted to do something to help the school heal, so she went to American Indian liaison J.P. Rennquist with an idea..."



Duluth East, Ordean East Students National History Day Qualifiers

This weekend, three students from Duluth East High School and Ordean East Middle School will compete in the virtual National History Day Contest, congratulations!

This year's theme was "Communication in HIstory: The Key to Understanding". The students and their topics are:

  • Natalie Miller, Duluth East (returning National Champion), Senior research paper "Our Bodies, Ourselves: How The Boston Women’s Health Book Collective Communicated Women’s Health in a Time of Little Understanding"
  • Emma Ambrosi, Duluth East, Senior website "The Photography of Ansel Adams: The Key to Understanding the Importance of the American Wilderness"
  • Hannah Mason, Ordean East Middle School, Junior exhibit "Averting Disasters At Sea: the Wireless Ship Act of 1910"



Laura MacArthur Last Day Celebration

From sidewalk art, nail painting, and crafts...to games in the gym and treats in the classroom, students and staff definitely ended the year on a high note! Keep SOARing Eagles!



Myers-Wilkins Field Day

The weather was right and the spirit was high for the school's Field Day. Ms. Marsten set up a wonderful combination of fun an games, Love Creamery supplied ice cream for all.

#Inspire709 #FunInTheSun


May all students, families and staff...

Students and staff at Congdon Park Elementary, celebrating the end of the school year and sharing best wishes to all.



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