At the April 19 regular School Board meeting, Onamia School Superintendent JJ Vold outlined the plans for the remainder of the school year. Vold said they are monitoring COVID-19 cases in their schools and the region very closely. They have seen an uptick in cases lately but are committed to remain in an in-person learning model with all the safety protocols in place and will hopefully get through the rest of the year, said Vold. The school’s COVID-19 coordinator collaborates with the region, the county and the Minnesota Dept of Health (MDH) on a weekly basis. Vold noted Onamia Schools have hosted 20 vaccine clinics so far at the Lion’s gym with more to come and noted they are doing everything they can to help the community to get whoever wants a vaccination taken care of including students sixteen years of age and older with parental consent.
Holly Booth, education director of Onamia Academy, has resigned and the Board wished her the best and will be shuffling duties within the administrative team to support the Academy for the remaining days of the school year. Vold announced graduation will be held on June 4, at 7 p.m. At this time, the school is leaning towards having the ceremony in the high school gym as capacity limits have been loosened by the MDH. The school is also doing banners on Main Street of Onamia for all the seniors again this year, as well as some other bells and whistles for this year’s graduating class.
Vold said they will also be working on prom, graduation, etc. for the next six weeks, and are working hard to support seniors that are at risk of not graduating. Seniors at risk are encouraged to attend credit recovery, Saturday school, summer school if needed, and other interventions. Vold said the school will continue to do everything in their power to help the students graduate. American College Testing (ACT) was held on April 14, and Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments (MCA) testing is currently underway.
Ms. VanReese and Ms. Thomas are planning a spring band and choir concert for grades 6-12 to be held on May 12. The concert is anticipated to be in-person. The concert may look a little different than normal with several new COVID-related adjustments. Further details will be sent to families.
Vold stated that at-will negotiations are almost wrapped up, and they will be having upcoming negotiation meetings with the Teachers and American Federation of State, County and municipal employees (AFSCME) leadership soon. Interviews for the Mille Lacs Raiders fall sports coaching is underway for the football and volleyball positions in preparation for the summer activities related to those sports. Coaching for cross country is already set, as are all other current Raiders sports. Vold concluded they are also working on extended school year and summer school programming and look forward to a safe, healthy and great rest of the school year.