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Marshall School Board approves FFA trip

Masks will be required on the trip, including during the convention

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Since the spring of 2020, school trips in any district, Marshall or otherwise, have been rare, if existent at all because of the novel coronavirus pandemic. Some students in the Marshall School District will soon again have the opportunity to take an out-of-state field trip.

The school board unanimously approved a trip to the FFA National Convention in Indianapolis, Ind. after a presentation by agriculture teacher Paula Bakken and student Mackenzie Jansen Oct. 7.

“I went two years ago before COVID was a thing,” Jansen said. “I brought back a lot of leadership skills.

Ashley Schlimgen, a Marshall FFA student, will participate in a national competition at the event.

“We would love to watch that, as well as taking our fellow students with us to attend workshops,” Jansen said.

Superintendent Dan Grady said he had been in communication with Bakken regarding transportation for the event.

“It seems very reasonable. We would partner with other districts,” Grady said.

Bakken said those other districts are Oshkosh and Omro, a district just west of Oshkosh. The Marshall, Oshkosh and Omro school districts will meet in Milwaukee and drive to Indianapolis.

“We’ll have hotel rooms at the same hotel, but districts will be in separate places. There will be boys rooms and girls room. I will be sharing a room with teachers in the other districts to save on costs,” Bakken said.

Masks will be required on the trip, including during the convention.

“We will do some tours. We purposely chose outside tours to mitigate risks,” Bakken said.

Marshall will have seven students on the trip.

“FFA is very important to me, so I’d like to make a motion we approve the trip,” board member Staci Abrahamson said.

The motion was seconded by Mike Rateike, the board vice president. It was approved unanimously.

Also at the meeting, Grady updated the board on COVID-19 numbers in the district. As of the meeting, there had been 11 positives total and 23 quarantines between students and staff in the district since Sept. 1.

“We are very happy – not happy about close contacts and positives – but we are not seeing transmission in schools,” Grady said.

The board also approved changing the next meeting date to Oct. 25 at 6 p.m.

“This is coming from (business manager) Bob (Chady.) This gives him more time to give more accurate budget information,” Grady said. “It doesn’t seem like much, but it does give him a lot to get that information.”

The board also approved not to wave liquidated damages to an employee who left the district prior to the end of his or her contract after a letter from that individual. It passed by a 4-3 margin. Reteike, President Debbie Frigo, clerk Heather Herschleb and treasurer Allison Fuelling voted to not waive liquidated damage costs. Abrahamson, Eric Thompson and Justin Rodriguez voted the other way. The board could not discuss the reason for that person leaving or who that individual was who left the district.

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