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Welcome Back Letter from Mr. Metsa

August 2014

Welcome back Grizzlies!

North Woods staff would like to welcome you back to another terrific school year in 2014-15! We would like to invite you to our Open House event on Thursday, August 28th from 3:00 – 6:00 pm for a quick preview of our school. Come and enjoy your school, and get to know your teachers and staff. Refreshments will be served.

We are looking forward to returning to our beautiful facility and working with our fantastic students. Administration, teachers and staff continue to work hard on maintaining a community learning environment that is safe, focused on high academic achievement, and a community that offers students and families a wide variety of extra-curricular activities, such as sports, student government and youth development opportunities.

We are once again implementing Cognitive Guided Instructional strategies on our classrooms and focusing on higher order thinking skills and project-based learning. Our entire teaching staff is committed to delivering quality instruction and constantly working to improve their performance in their classrooms. We employ data driven decision-making in order to ensure success for all.

IPAD Minis will be available to every 7th through 12th grade student. We are moving “beyond textbooks” and into an integrated and enriched educational environment that will allow students to explore and discover their future endeavors. Please note that every student using IPAD Minis and their parent(s) must sign a contract and submit a $40 insurance fee. An information session on IPAD Minis will be held at 5:30 pm during the Open House.

Thank you for your wonderful support, and we promise you that we will continue to work hard to make North Woods School a “first-class” school!

With regards,

John R. Metsa

North Woods Principal

218-666-5221, Ext. 5301

Welcome Back Message from Steve Sallee, Superintendent

appleI am very excited to begin another school year and I’m especially excited about the great initiatives that we have going in ISD #2142.  We will share many of those initiatives with you in future articles.  If you have not been in our buildings this summer I am confident you will notice the many changes and improvements.  Please stop in and look around!  We have been extremely busy this summer behind the scenes getting ready for another year.  August is always an exciting time as several teachers are back in their classrooms getting ready for that first day. I’ve also noticed several students back in the building participating in extra curricular activities.

Bullying      My administrative team and I have spent a lot of time this summer discussing the topic of bullying in our schools.  I want to reassure you that this is an issue that will not be ignored in any of our buildings.  If your child is having an issue, please report it to your building principal immediately.  Bullying normally doesn’t happen in the site of staff.  It most often takes place in the hallways, locker rooms or wherever there isn’t as much adult supervision.  Don’t assume we know about it, report it.  One you report it, it will be investigated and followed through with appropriate action based on district policies.  Keep in mind, we can’t share with  you any consequences taken due to data privacy laws.

We are seeing more reports of bullying issues that are happening outside of school via cyberspace.  We take bullying very seriously at 2142 and never ignore an issue when it is reported to us.  Don’t ever assume that we know exactly what it taking place.  If your child is experiencing difficulties, don’t hesitate to let us know about it.  Unfortunately, when it takes place online and it’s not directly tied to the school, we may not be able to help as much as we otherwise would. However, the new statute states that if it happens off the school premises to the extent such use substantially and materially disrupts student learning or the school environment, we need to investigate it.  There is always a fine line between free speech and cyber bullying.

Bullying Versus Peer Conflict    The new state statute defines bullying as follows:  “Bullying” means intimidating, threatening, abusive or harming conduct that is objectively offensive and:

- there is an actual or perceived imbalance of power between the student engaging in the prohibited conduct and the target of the prohibited conduct, and the conduct is repeated or forms a pattern; OR…

- materially and substantially interferes with a student’s educational opportunities or performance or ability to participate in school functions or activities or receive school benefits, services or privileges.

I cannot promise you that the new laws will completely eliminate bullying in any school but I do promise that when it is reported to us, we will follow through and do whatever is in our power to make 2142 safe for every student.

Best wishes for a great 2014-15 school year!  If you ever have questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at or at the district office at 218-749-8130.


Open House Scheduled for Thursday, August 28!

The North Woods School Annual Open House to kick off the new 2014-15 school year will be held Thursday, August 28 from 3:00 – 6:00 pm. Students and parents/guardians can meet teachers, visit classrooms, register new students, and turn in completed forms for the new school year.  See below for detailed information about Open House and the school year.

School Begins Pic

     Classes for Grades 1 – 12 begin Tuesday, September 2nd.  
     Classes for Kindergarten begin Thursday, September 4th.

At the Open House, Kindergarten parents may sign up for their “Meet the Teacher” conference on Tuesday, September 2nd or Wednesday, September 3rd.

Open House Information

New This Year: Packets containing most of our forms will be mailed to currently enrolled student households for completion BEFORE Open House  - we are asking that they be returned at Open House.  New students who have not enrolled before August 28th may pick up and complete forms at Open House. We will have information on bus routes (as well as bus forms), the Little Grizzlies After School program, and the Volunteers in Education program. An information session on IPAD Minis for 7th – 12th grade parents and students will be held at 5:30 pm.

Elementary Class Assignments: Elementary student teacher/classroom assignments may be picked up at the Open House after completed forms are turned in. After the Open House, lists of elementary students and their classroom/teacher assignments will be posted on the entryway windows.

Secondary Schedules: Grade 7 – 12 student schedules will be in the Commons for pickup at the Open House after completed forms are turned in.

 Bussing Info

The drivers are currently working on route assignments. As mentioned above, your bussing information and forms will be available at the Open House. If you are new or your former times/routes have changed, your driver will contact you as school approaches to verify pickup and drop-off times. It is very important that we have current contact information for your household. If you moved over the summer and/or changed phone numbers, please notify the school office as soon as possible.

Sports Fees

Fall Sports Fee Reminders: Volleyball, football and cross country fees for students in grades 9-12 are due by Monday, August 25th. Varsity and Jr Varsity athlete fees are $120 per student. C-Team athletic fees are $60. A sliding fee will be applied to students who qualify for free/reduced lunch. Practices have begun and schedules have been given to the students. If you need more information on practices, contact the respective coaches at the school (Mr. John Jirik for football, Mr. Tom Burnett for volleyball, and Mr. Dan Squires for Cross Country). See this website for email and contact information.

 Food Service

 Money for meals is paid directly to cafeteria staff. Please make sure your student has money in his/her account when school begins. Meal prices are as follows: High School Lunch – $2.45; Elementary Lunch – $2.15. Breakfast for both HS and Elementary is $1.60. Extra Milk is $0.60.

 New this year: Students who qualify for reduced-price school meals will receive FREE lunches and breakfasts. ALL Kindergarten students qualify for FREE breakfasts. If you have not yet applied for free school meals and wish to do so, contact the school office or the District Office for forms.

Picture Day is Monday, September 8th 

Student, staff, class group, and fall sports pictures will be taken. Times for preschoolers from the community to have their pictures taken are tentatively 8:00 to 8:30 am and 11:45 to 12:15 pm. Order envelopes are being mailed to currently enrolled students with their forms packets. Extras will be available at the Open House or they may be picked up in the office after the Open House.

Class Schedule and Entrance to the Building

We are still following a Flex Wednesday schedule. On Wednesdays, school dismisses at 2:02 pm. All other days of the week (Monday/Tuesday/Thursday/Friday), school dismisses at 3:15 pm.

Once school begins, all entrances automatically lock at 8:30 am. After that time, anyone wishing to enter the building must report to the office through the front doors.


If you have questions, please feel free to contact the office at (218) 666-5221.  Office Hours on Friday, August 29th: 9:00 am to 2:00 pm. Office Hours Beginning Tuesday, September 2nd: Monday/Tuesday/Thursday/Friday 7:30 am to 4:00 pm; Wednesday 7:30 am to 3:00 pm. We are located at 10248 Olson Road East, north of Cook.

 Have a terrific school year!

Elementary Supply List for 2014-2015

These are tentative lists – we might think of a few more things that your child might need as the school year progresses. Just click on this link and the list will pop up.    North Woods School Elementary Supply Lists 2014-15

We look forward to seeing everyone in the fall!