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School Board Approves Open Campus For Some Seniors

By Staff | Oct 23, 2008

About 20 members of the senior class at Emmetsburg High School will again enjoy limited open campus after approval was sought and granted at the Oct. 20, meeting of the Emmetsburg Community Schools Board of Education.

High School Principal Jay Jurrens asked the school board to consider open campus for select seniors during first and second periods on Tuesday and Thursday. Open campus would go into effect at the start of the second semester.

“About 20 of our students go to Iowa Lakes Community College on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday during first and second periods, and then currently spend Tuesday and Thursday morning in study hall,” explained Jurrens. “A lot of them have been just sitting in study hall. I think they could make more productive use of their time.”

Jurrens added that open campus would be a reward for the students. Open campus was first granted to members of the senior class last year. To take part in open campus, the students are required to sign an oath to not abuse the privilege.

“If the students want to, can they still use the time to be in study hall?” asked Dave VanOosbree, board member.

“They can still participate in study hall, if they wish,” said Jurrens.

“How about discipline?” VanOosbree wondered. “What happens if they abuse open campus?”

“The privilege would be gone, then,” Jurrens stated. “We had six students lose their open campus privileges last year. They’re well aware of the consequences.”

With no further discussion, the board unanimously approved the open campus request.

In other business, the school district’s recycling efforts were discussed by the members of the board.

“We used to do recycling of paper, but Horizons Unlimited refused our paper because of the garbage in it,” said Superintendent John Joynt. “We had placed barrels in each classroom, and students threw their paper in them, but they also threw their candy and gum wrappers, and all kinds of stuff in it, too.”

Board member Linda Tienter suggested that, perhaps, recycling could be taken on by a group of students as part of a community service project.

Joynt noted that the kitchen staff in the district has been successful in recycling cardboard and tin cans. Efforts to collect paper at the high school have been initiated again.

“Our biggest struggle is with plastic bottles,” said Joynt. “We generate a lot of water and Gatorade bottles at our games. Since there’s no deposit on these bottles, people just throw them away, but they also throw other trash in the receptacles. We need to keep thinking of easier ways to collect the bottles.”

Also, during the meeting, former school board member Scott Dettmann was honored for serving a three-year term on the Board of Education. In September, Dettmann chose not to run for re-election to his seat. He accepted a plaque in honor of his dedication to the school district, as well as a lifetime pass to E’Hawk activities and events.