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Hidden Valley has mini-nature center created by BHS grad

Posted on August 22, 2014

Alex Godfrey, Burnsville High School Class of 2014, has headed off to college, but he's left behind a wonderful gift at Hidden Valley Elementary School in Savage.

He created a mini-nature center in front of the school as part of his Eagle Scout project.

It's a feature that science specialist Patricia Mosey and Stephanie Mathews, fourth grade teacher, have wanted for awhile. "The reason is to get students outside to connect with the world around them," said Mosey.  

Every year, all students at Hidden Valley take a one-day field trip to the McColl Environmental Learning Center in Savage. "We wanted to bring some of that environment back to Hidden Valley where teachers and students can benefit every day," she said.

Mosey approached the leader of a Boy Scout troop that meets at Hidden Valley and asked if anyone was interested in creating the nature center as part of a community service project related to earning an Eagle badge, the highest rank in Scouting. The idea appealed to Godfrey who has a strong interest in the outdoors.  

He conferred with Mosey, completed a lot of research and came up with a proposal. It was approved by Mosey and by several levels of review in the Boy Scout organization.

Then Godfrey recruited volunteers to build the center in three days last spring.

The nature center, located in front of the school, is designed around four existing evergreen trees and contains 20 plants to attract butterflies. Since they don't do well in windy conditions, Godfrey also added berms topped by ornamental grasses to block the wind. He created five signs with information about the water cycle, butterfly cycle, butterfly gardens, weather and erosion.

His fundraising for the project went better than expected, so he purchased metal benches instead of wood. "They'll last longer and be easier to maintain," he said.

The project took two years from start to finish, but was worth it. Godfrey is pleased with the end result and "It's cool to see kids enjoying a different learning environment."

"Now teachers can use the space for an outdoor classroom," said Mosey, who thanks Godfrey for his wonderful work. "It's a great teaching tool to extend science and apply it to the real world."

Posted in Community, Student Success, Alumni | Tagged nature center, environment, hidden valley

BHS Invites Students to Open House on Aug. 27

Posted on August 19, 2014

Burnsville Senior High School’s Open House for all classes at the main campus and senior campus is set for Aug.27 beginning at 4 p.m. and ending at 7 p.m. Our open house format is designed to allow parents and students to come any time from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. to both the main campus and senior campus to meet teachers and learn about classes. 

Plus, our entire office area will be open at both the main campus and senior campus with our counselors, nurse, dean, associate principals, other support staff, and clerical staff available to answer questions and help you. Food service personnel will also be available at the main campus to assist with lunch accounts, including depositing money. The school store will also be open, and there will be information available to pick up from Herff Jones on class rings. 




Parents of sophomores and of new students in grades 11 and 12 are invited to attend one of two information sessions being presented during our Open House on Wednesday, Aug. 27. One session begins at 4 p.m. in the Mraz Center and the other session begins at 6:30 p.m. Both sessions will last approximately 30 minutes. Students do not need to attend this orientation.

The orientation session will give parents an opportunity to learn more about some of the important policies and procedures at the high school and ask questions.

Posted in Parents | Tagged bhs, open house

Join us at Back-to-School Orientation!

Posted on August 19, 2014

Welcome Back!

Orientation Dates:

  • Wednesday, Aug. 20, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
  • Thursday, Aug. 21, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.

Come to orientation at the BHS Main Campus and take care of all the following start of the school year items:

  • Pick up your 2014-15 class schedule
  • Get your school picture taken by Life Touch (all students, gr 10-12, need a picture for their student ID)
  • Deposit money into your lunch account
  • Complete parking application and pay for permit

We look forward to seeing you!

Posted in Parents | Tagged back to school, orientation, bhs

Residents’ opinions gathered through survey in District 191

Posted on August 14, 2014

Residents provided opinions on a host of issues, including curriculum, instructional technology and facilities use in a recent telephone survey in Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191.

Results of the survey will be used in continuing to develop Vision One91, the district’s plan for ensuring its mission of “Each Student Real-World Ready.”

It is one more way that feedback is being gathered. During his first year with the district, Superintendent Joe Gothard talked with hundreds of students, families, employees and community members about opportunities and challenges in the district. From their feedback, Vision One91 began to develop.

Survey results echoed what Gothard has been hearing. For example, nearly 90% of respondents said that technology is absolutely essential or very important to classroom learning. That response is in the top 25% of metro districts they’ve surveyed, said Peter Leatherman, chief executive officer, who shared survey results with members of the District 191 Board of Education on Aug. 7.

“The results show our residents understand how important technology is for daily classroom instruction and preparing our students for college and career,” said Gothard.

Nearly 90% say there is a safe and secure environment in District 191 schools. Yet they support even more improvements in security. This is a common response on school district surveys, said Leatherman, since the school shooting in Connecticut.

According to the survey, an area that needs more discussion is the possibility of changing grade configuration so that grades 9-12 would be together at Burnsville High School, grades 6-8 at the junior highs, and kindergarten through fifth grade at elementaries. Thirty-three percent of those surveyed felt that the current grade configuration is fine as it is.

“I see great potential with a 9-12 high school in terms of providing more opportunities that prepare students to be successful and ready for college and careers,” Gothard said. “It would involve changes to the school to provide space and ensure it’s set up in a way that best serves all  students, but I strongly believe it’s worth pursuing because of what it could mean for our students.”

On the topic of finances, 85% said that the community receives a good value from its investment in the school district, a seven percent increase from the 2011 survey.

Overall, respondents support property tax increases for security enhancements, elementary classroom space, redesigning  Diamondhead Education Center and adding learning space at Burnsville High School for classrooms and athletics/activities.

The survey of 400 randomly-selected residents was conducted by the Morris Leatherman Company, which has done extensive polling for school districts and cities throughout the Twin Cities metro area. The firm most recently surveyed the District 191 community in 2011.

Further input into Vision One91 will be gathered this fall through meetings with community groups and through the website at

Posted in Community, Finance, Referendum | Tagged survey, Vision One91, safety, technology

Homecoming Week at BHS

Posted on August 13, 2014

Burnsville will be celebrating Homecoming a little early this year! Beginning Sept. 8, there will be a host of activities to show your school spirit. Administration, teachers and staff have planned a fun week of events for BHS students.


  • Morning Pep Fest
  • Powder Puff Football @ BHS 6-8:30 p.m.
  • Beach Day


  • Wacky Day


  • Bonfire @ BHS 7-9:30 p.m.
  • Patriotic Day


  • Morning coronation assembly
  • Boys/Girls Soccer vs. Apple Valley
  • Volleyball vs. Apple Valley
  • Dress Your Best Day


  • Junior high assemblies
  • Football vs. Minnetonka
  • Blaze Day


  • Homecoming Dance @ BHS 8 p.m.-midnight. Cost is $15.
Posted in Community, Athletics, Parents | Tagged homecoming, football, volleyball, soccer, activities

Seven candidates will be on District 191 ballot in November

Posted on August 13, 2014

Seven candidates have filed for four four-year terms on the Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191 Board of Education. The filing period closed on Aug. 12.

They are (in the order they filed):

  • Harold S. Sandahl IV, 14512 Kipling Ave. South, Savage;
  • Jim Schmid, 11107 Territorial Ct., Burnsville;  
  • Bradley Wolfe, 2751 Selkirk Drive, Apt. 211, Burnsville;
  • Abigail Alt, 16 Marcin Hill, Burnsville;   
  • Dustin Cesarek, 11913 Baypoint Drive, Burnsville;
  • Dan Luth, 14855 River Crossing, Savage, and
  • Robert VandenBoom, 2062 Royale Drive, Eagan.

All those who file for office will be on the ballot for Election Day on Tuesday, Nov. 4, unless they file an affidavit of withdrawal by 5 p.m. on Aug. 14.

The terms of board members Abigail Alt, Dan Luth, Jim Schmid and Bob VandenBoom expire on Dec. 31. Newly-elected board members will begin their terms in January 2015.

Others on the seven-member school board include DeeDee Currier, Ron Hill and Sandy Sweep. For more information, call the district at (952) 707-2005. 

Tagged election, school board

BHS welcomes new athletic trainer

Posted on August 12, 2014

Doug Nelson will be the new athletic trainer at Burnsville High School. The Institute for Athletic Medicine (IAM) provides the athletic training services at BHS. The athletic training room is located in the back of the boys and girls locker rooms across from the gym. The training room is open Monday–Friday during the following hours:

  • Fall --  2:15–5:15 p.m.
  • Winter -- 2:15–4:45 p.m.
  • Spring --  2:15–4:00 p.m.

Please read the attached letter for additional information.

Posted in Athletics, Parents | Tagged student-athletes, athletic department, athletic trainer

Sioux Trail is turning 50!

Posted on August 12, 2014

Sioux Trail Elementary School is celebrating 50 years of educating our community's children and making connections among parents, residents and staff members. We hope you'll celebrate with us this fall.

Schedule of Activities

Thursday, Oct. 2, 2014
1:30 pm — In-School Program “Celebrating 50 Years”
5:30-8 pm— Open House & Book Fair
5:30-7:30 pm — Silent Auction
6:30-7:30 pm — Dance – Music Celebrating the 1960s Through Today 

Saturday, Oct. 4, 2014
10 am — Community Fun Run/Walk
Noon — Tree Planting

Posted in Community, Parents | Tagged 50th anniversary, sioux trail

Burnsville Football's "Kick Off Bash" set for Aug. 22

Posted on August 11, 2014

Burnsville Football's fourth annual “Kick Off Bash” will be held on Friday, Aug. 22 from 5-8 p.m. in Bob Pates Stadium at Burnsville High School. This free event is sure to bring BAC Youth and BHS football programs together, along with their fans, to “fire up” for the upcoming season!

Come and mingle with varsity coaches and players, and check out performances by the Blazette Danceline and the BHS Cheerleaders. You can even take the Dodge “Grid Iron Challenge." When you test-drive a new Ram truck, Dodge will donate funds to the Burnsville Football program. Delicious food will be provided by Burger Jones, with proceeds also benefiting Burnsville Football. Players and their teams will scrimmage and participate in skills challenges, as well as many other activities. 

Participants can bounce in the inflatables, stock up on Blaze football clothing and enter to win fabulous prizes in our raffle, too! ​So, come on out and enjoy a fun night with Burnsville Football! 


Posted in Athletics, Community | Tagged Kick Off Bash, football, BAC, bhs

BHS Student Orientation is Aug. 20-21

Posted on August 10, 2014

BHS student orientation is scheduled for Wednesday, August 20 and Thursday, August 21 from 11 am until 6 pm. Due to the construction that has been going on during the summer, access may be limited during our orientation days. Please watch your emails for updates as we get closer to orientation. During orientation, our main office and guidance office will be open so please stop by and let us know how we can help you. Below you will find some specific information regarding class schedules, student pictures, and student parking permits.

Student Class Schedules

Students need to attend orientation and pick up their class schedule. Class schedules are not mailed home. If you are a senior, you must pick up your schedule so you know if you are at the senior campus in the morning or the afternoon. For all students, you need to pick up your schedule so that if there are any questions or concerns, there is time for you to address those with your school counselor. However, remember schedule changes are not made for convenience reasons, i.e. being with friends, having a specific lunch, having a specific teacher, etc.

Student Pictures

Our school's fall picture days are August 20 and 21 during orientation from 11 am until 6 pm. Student pictures will taken in the Mraz Center. You can already visit the website at and place orders online. The picture day ID is: MI194017Y0 (all 0 = zero). The online order window for this picture ID will be available until 48 hours after picture day.  

All students, grades 10-12, must get their picture taken in order to receive their student ID. The student ID is provided at no cost.

We encourage you to get your picture taken at orientation. However, if you are out of town or unavailable during orientation, there is a picture make-up day scheduled for Thursday, September 4.

Student Parking Permits

Parking permits will be available during orientation. Please follow the link below to complete the online application. Read carefully and bring the necessary documents and payment to orientation to receive your parking permit.

Online Application

School Supply Resources

Salvation Army  & Mission OutPost at Prince of Peace Church, Burnsville

The Salvation Army will be distributing school supplies through the Mission Outpost/Salvation Army Food Shelf in Burnsville-while supplies last. Please visit here for more information.

360 Communities-Family Support Workers 

This year 360 Communities is partnering with Vineyard Community Services (Fruit of the Vine food shelf) to distribute backpacks and school supplies on August 23 and 30 to families accessing the 360 Communities Burnsville Family Resource Center. Families can call 952-985-5300 to see if vouchers are still available. Families with a 360 Communities Family Support Worker (this includes Burnsville High School) assigned to their local school should contact them after August 25, 2014. If you have any questions, please contact Arianna Lavallee, BHS Family Support Worker, at 952-707-2133.

Posted in Parents | Tagged back to school, orientation, bhs