From the Office of the Superintendent 5/30/19
Weekly Briefing for ISD 709 Faculty & Staff
The last days of the school year are filled with activities, celebrations, recognition, awards, scholarships, retirements, field trips, school picnics and more.
These gatherings remind us that we are a community - and there is something awesome and wonderful about being together and working together toward a common goal. From the first day of school to the last each classroom, each grade level, each school builds a stronger community. I appreciate all that you do to make sure every student has a positive experience.
The road, I know, can sometimes be challenging -- perhaps that's part of what makes these end of the year gatherings all the more powerful. Enjoy.
If you have questions or thoughts about what's going on in our school district, email: Superintendents@ISD709.org. Twitter: @billgronseth
Depression might be more common than you think
There are 19 million Americans living with depression, and it affects everyone differently. Not all treatments work the same for every person, but with an accurate diagnosis, effective medication, attention to health and wellness, and peer and family support, there is hope for recovery.
If you consistently feel down most of each day and most days for more than two weeks, seek professional help. Below are a few ways people commonly treat depression, and a physician can help decide which way is best for you.
Antidepressants are medicines that your doctor may prescribe for depression. Medicine helps up to 70 percent of people, especially those experiencing severe depression, or those who have experienced mild or moderate depression for a long time.
If it’s the first time you’re being treated with medication and you are noticing side effects, don’t just stop the medication—call your provider—there may be a number of things that can be done to help. After you start feeling better you should stay on your medicine for at least six to 12 months. If you’ve been treated with medication before, you may need to stay on it longer.
Never stop taking medicine without contacting your doctor first, even if you’re feeling better. There can be bad side effects from suddenly going off some medicines.
For many people, talking with a mental health professional is helpful. In fact, therapy is about as effective as medicine for people with mild to moderate depression. Several studies show participating in therapies for a brief period of time helps long after the sessions are over. This is because people learn new ways to think and cope.
Exercise, such as walking or running, has been proven to improve not only physical health, but also psychological health. It positively changes some of the same chemicals in the brain that are targeted by antidepressant medication. It also improves energy, relieves anxiety, boosts moods and helps you feel empowered. Talk to your doctor about how to start your treatment, and incorporate exercise into your plan.
Support family and friends
One way to support those you know who experience depression or other mental illnesses, is simply by talking to them and acknowledging their illness. Most people live with symptoms of a mental illness for ten years before seeking treatment, largely due to the stigma. Talking about mental illnesses is one way to help show your support and help break down the stigma.
Many don’t know how to respond when friends and family bring up their struggles with depression, or other illnesses. The good news is that there are resources that can help you, like “Make It OK”. The website offers tool kits and tips to help guide you on how to talk about mental health. For example, just ask, “What can I do to help?” or say, “I am here if you need me”.
Visit MakeItOk.org to learn more about what you can do.
Thanks so much for all you do and please join us for exciting community events this month.
ISD 709 News
Denfeld High School presented $5.4 million in scholarships to graduating seniors and announce numerous scholarships students received from other schools and sources outside of Denfeld. The presentation took place during the school’s annual Honors Night, many of the scholarships were a surprise for students and their families.
During the event over 300 students received an “Honor D” pin for succeeding academically and exhibiting good character, a long-time Denfeld tradition. Pins were presented by Denfeld’s Honor Court King and Queen.
Congratulations band members and band director Blake Peterson, earning a top spot in the Eau Claire Jazz Festival, a regional competition drawing more than 100 bands from across the Midwest. About 3,000 audience members attend the festival, which features professional headliners and student competitions.
Lincoln Park Teachers Honored for Achievement
The Duluth School Board recognized the Lincoln Park Middle School 6th Grade Team, recipients of the CSS Friend of TRIO Award. The TRIO Talent Search program at The College of St. Scholastica serves students in grades 6-12.
Congratulations, Linda Mooers, Dean Herold, Katie Britton, Deb Showalter, Bill Benson , Jody Goodreau, Dawn Poppenberg, Erin Maly and Kurt Drengler.
Excerpts from the CSS presentation:
“This student-centered, dedicated group of teachers understands that early exposure to future possibilities can create excitement and self-confidence, and they share our belief that higher education can be within reach for all students.
“This team has not only given class time for recruiting campaigns and career workshops, but they have also consistently excused students for group meetings and college campus visits.
“Some of these teachers have been supporting the efforts of Talent Search for the entire 20+ years of its existence at Lincoln Park and have helped us guide over 800 TRIO students through 6th grade. Talent Search has been extremely fortunate to have such a fun, patient and passionate group of professionals working beside us.”
Congratulations and thank you for all you do to support student success!
Students from Laura MacArthur Elementary talked with people from a wide range of professions during the school’s career fair. They asked questions about how people got interested in their field, how they prepared during high school and what sort of education is required after high school. They also asked what people like most and least about their jobs and about their greatest challenges. Thanks to all who helped make this opportunity possible!
Thank you, Calvin Harris, for the photos and info.
KBJR-TV was at Duluth East High school, talking with students in Donald Simon's engineering and manufacturing classes.
At Duluth East and Denfeld High Schools, students have opportunities to learn hands-on, professional skills beyond those taught in a traditional classroom - but that's not all.
Through a partnership with Lake Superior College, students can also earn dual credits toward a future post-secondary education. Courses are part of ISD 709's Career & Technical Education program.
College Book Awards are presented each year to exceptional high school students who have excelled in their intelligence, determination, motivation, and are visible members of their schools and communities. Colleges and universities across the United States partner with high schools to present the awards.
Congratulations, 2019 College Book Award Recipients: Shanze Hayee (Harvard University), Sofia Rovano (George Washington University), Elijah Leonard (Dartmouth College), Victoria Ball (Yale University), Mariah Loeffler-Kemp (Wellesley College).
Thank you, Jessica Forsman, for the photo and info.
Congratulations to the Drama Department at Duluth East High School for receiving the Spotlight Award for their production of Bonnie & Clyde. Three Duluth East students - Helana Goei, Kate Brinkert, and Lussi Salmela will represent the department and perform at the State Theater in Minneapolis, MN June 11.
Spotlight Showcase is a professionally produced, two-night event taking place at the Historic State Theatre. It highlights the hard work and talent of the students, teachers, families and community members that are part of the vibrant high school musical theatre community in Minnesota. Over 1,600 students participated on and offstage at the 2018 showcase.
Thank you, Peter Froehlingsdorf, for the information.
Free Meals for Children: 2019 Summer Breakfast & Lunch Program
Funded by the US Department of Agriculture, meals are provided to children 18 years of age and under without charge; adults accompanying their children can purchase a breakfast for $2.50 or lunch for $4.50.
No paperwork necessary, just show up for good food and friendly service!
Menus include a variety of items - hot entrees, salads, sandwiches, vegetables, fruits, bread, milk. Specific menus will be available online shortly before June 11.
Meals served June 11 – August 23, 2019 (No service July 4).
Breakfast: 8:00 AM to 10:30 AM
Lunch: 11:30 AM to 1:00PM
ISD 709 Summer Meal Locations:
- Myers-Wilkins Elementary, 1027 N 8th Avenue East
- Piedmont Elementary, 2827 Chambersburg Avenue
- Laura MacArthur Elementary, 720 North Central Avenue
- Lincoln Park Middle 3215 West 3rd Street
- Lowell Elementary 2000 Rice Lake Road
- Stowe Elementary, 715 – 101st Avenue West
Note, meals must be consumed at serving sites.
This institution is an equal opportunity provider.