Two seniors among finalists in economics essay contest

Posted on May 30, 2018
Two seniors from Burnsville High School were among 30 finalists in an essay contest held by the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis this spring.
Matthew Fischer and Kelly Solberg each received $100 and were honored at an awards luncheon in May, where they heard from economics experts and toured the facility.  
This year’s essay topic was, “Should the federal government increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour?”
Essays were judged by college economics faculty and Federal Reserve staff members on the basis of comprehension, organization, conclusions, creativity and writing.
Kathryn Wendling, their social studies teacher, connected students with the contest. 
Posted in Achievement | Tagged bhs, essay contest, federal reserve bank of minneapolis, economics

BHS students entering military recognized by Burnsville Beyond the Yellow Ribbon

Posted on May 30, 2018

Burnsville Beyond the Yellow Ribbon (BTYR) recognized Burnsville High School seniors May 22 who have made military commitments during a Burnsville City Council meeting and at a reception at the Dan Patch American Legion in Savage.

Nine students from Burnsville, Eagan and Savage have made commitments – two to the U.S. Marine Corps, three to the U.S. Army and four to the Minnesota Army National Guard.

They include:

  • U.S. Marines: Zachary Schultz of Savage and Nathan Schumacher of Savage.
  • U.S. Army: Seth Merrill of Burnsville, Perry Appau of Burnsville, and Hussein Ruto of Burnsville.
  • Minnesota Army National Guard: Jake Naumann of Eagan, Garrett Schrupp of Rosemount, Jackson Gray of Savage, and Brock Latvala of Savage.

Mike Huddleston, coordinator for Burnsville BTYR, said this is the third year the organization has honored BHS students to congratulate them for making a commitment to serve their community and country. “This is a very honorable endeavor that we feel should be acknowledged and celebrated before you leave to begin your military training,” he said, “I also want to recognize and thank the families of these young folks for letting us borrow them to go to boot camp so that they can represent Burnsville, Eagan and Savage and our country.”

During the City Council meeting, the students were given a $75 gift card and a gift bag with sundry items, including a chocolate bar, as a nod to the military members of the past who often found “John Wayne Bars,” in their K-rations, an individual daily combat food ration introduced during World War II; and a protein bar, which is a nod to today’s military, which receives MRE rations.

The Burnsville VFW, Burnsville American Legion, Burnsville Lions, Burnsville BTYR, Two Eagles Marine Detachment – Marine Corps League and Dan Patch American Legion provided donations in support of the student recognition. A reception for the students and their families was held at the Dan Patch American Legion in Savage, where students were provided with complimentary one-year memberships and American flags.

BTYR is a state-wide network of a diverse group of citizens and community leaders uniting key areas within local communities to leverage existing support activities, build awareness, and act to recognize and support veterans, service members and military families.

Three of the nine Burnsville High School students who are entering the military posed for a picture with members of the Burnsville City Council, Burnsville Beyond the Yellow Ribbon, and representatives from the city of Savage, city of Burnsville, and Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District
Posted in Community, Achievement | Tagged bhs, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Army, Minnesota Army National Guard, beyond the yellow ribbon, Burnsville City Council, Burnsville VFW, Burnsville American Legion, burnsville lions, Dan Patch American Legion in Savage

Sioux Trail custodian earns national school support employee award

Posted on May 29, 2018

Mark Glende, head custodian at Sioux Trail Elementary School in Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191, is one of five school support staff in the nation to receive the 2018 Recognizing Inspirational School Employees (RISE) award. Given annually by the National Coalition of Classified Educational Support Employee Unions, the RISE award is presented to staff members are doing extraordinary and inspirational work in their schools and communities to promote quality education, foster positive learning environments, and ensure student success.

Glende was recognized for his proven track record of going above and beyond to make the school a safe, welcoming and enriching place for all the students. He has particularly focused on sustainability and conservation programs, both to help the school save money and as a learning opportunity for students.

“I'm very proud to win this award. I truly believe if we each leave things a little better than we find them, we can accomplish amazing things,” said Glende. “I am proud to be able to work every day to make that a reality for students in my community."

Some of the work he’s led includes creating a employee and student group to study the effects of energy conservation measures like turning off classroom lights and making sure blinds were down at the end of the day to conserve heat. Because of the group’s work along with support from the entire school, Sioux Trail Elementary became one of the first Minnesota schools to become an ENERGY STAR Leader Top Performer and in 2007 ranked as the second most energy efficient school in the Midwest.

Glende has also organized school-wide efforts and student groups focused on recycling and composting organic materials to cut down on what the school sends to the landfill. Over a couple of years, the school went from producing enough trash to fill a four-yard dumpster daily to only filing a one-yard dumpster weekly.

His leadership saw him appointed to and elected chairman of the city of Burnsville’s Environmental and Sustainability Task Force.

Other projects during his time at Sioux Trail have included painting a world map on the playground, painting numbers and fractions on steps to help younger students learn math, and even painting inspirational words on gym walls in his effort to turn “dead space” into “learning spaces.”

“Mr. Glende is a positive role for our staff, students, and community members,” said Sioux Trail Principal Shannon McParland. “He supports lifelong learning by showing students how to be future ready as global citizens within our world. He models making our world a better place by recycling, saving energy and reusing goods and products.”

Glende has worked in District 191 schools since 1996, nearly all of that time at Sioux Trail. He was honored by the district for his volunteerism with a John Coskran Volunteer Award in 2004.

“Mark is a classic example of school employees across Minnesota who go above and beyond every single day to make our schools safer and more enriching for our students,” said Keith Niemi, President of SEIU Local 284. “We are incredibly proud of Mark and the positive impact he is making on students, his school and the community. His whole SEIU Local 284 family are incredibly proud of this outstanding achievement.”

Learn more about the RISE Awards at

Posted in Achievement | Tagged awards, mark glende, sioux trail, custodian

Negotiations at impasse; Board wants arbitration

Posted on May 25, 2018

Update: A tentative agreement has been reached between the District 191 Board of Education and the representatives of the Burnsville Education Association. Read a joint statement here


Future teachers honored in first-ever BHS signing ceremony

Posted on May 23, 2018

The first-ever teacher signing ceremony took place in the Burnsville High School Career Center on May 23 with 14 seniors who plan to become teachers.  

BHS language arts teacher Allison Millea heard about a similar event that took place in Iowa last year and wanted to create an official ceremony at Burnsville High School to honor students who have committed to pursuing a teaching career.

It’s like the ceremonies with high school seniors signing letters of intent with the colleges and universities where they’ll play sports.

“To all of you amazing students here today, congratulations on making such a powerful decision,” said Millea, who is completing her 5th year of teaching. “You are committing to a brighter future for everyone. You are dedicated to improving lives.”

She told students: “Just remember: no matter the age, the content, the year, you are shaping the future of humanity. Not to sound dramatic, but you are literal superheroes for making the choice to teach. If you want to make the world a better place, start with education. Future teachers, please know that everyone in this building is so impossibly proud of you. As you sign your letters of intent today, you are already making tomorrow brighter. Congratulations!”

Future teachers include:

  • Olivia Brammer, Augsburg University
  • Samantha Brenes, Normandale Community College
  • Kristine Brinkman, Bethel University
  • Megan Fuerstenberg. Minnesota State University - Mankato
  • Jayde Grass, Winona State University
  • Joy Grittner, Winona State University
  • Zachary Holmes, Winona State University
  • Mitchell Huerd, Normandale Community College/Minnesota State University - Mankato
  • Alexandra Kielas, Winona State University
  • Shealyn McMahon, University of Wisconsin - La Crosse
  • Jackson Morris, Normandale Community College
  • Natalie Root-Hepner, Dakota County Technical College
  • Abby Tucci, Lake Forest College
  • Elija Worley, University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point.

Teachers Dave McDevitt and Hayley Ohama, advisors of the Future Teachers of America (FTA) club, assisted with the event along with Marcia Sexton, college and career specialist. Students wore t-shirts or sweatshirts from the colleges/universities they’ll attend. Parents were invited.

On a related note, next year through a new partnership with Normandale Community College, a teaching pathway will begin at Burnsville High School. Seniors will be able to take two education courses and earn seven college credits -- right at the high school.

The courses, “Introduction to Education” and “Multicultural Education and Human Relations in School,” are being made possible thanks in part to a “Grow Your Own” grant from the Minnesota Department of Education. Learn more about Burnsville High School's new education classes.

"These classes will give students a jump start, both in terms of earning college credit and in having a better idea of what's involved in education and whether it's a good fit for them," said Jeff Pope of the district’s Systems Improvement and Student Achievement Department.

The approach aligns with Burnsville’s Pathways model, which helps students think about and prepare for their futures by providing real-world opportunities right in the school, many of which lead to professional certifications or college credit.

2018 Teaching Letter of Intent

Posted in Student Success, Academics | Tagged bhs, future teachers, Pathways, education

Metcalf student's work selected for 3M innovators conference

Posted on May 23, 2018

Metcalf 8th grader Ellie Scheldberg was invited to present at the 2018 3M Young Innovators Conference, held on May 4 at 3M's main headquarters in Maplewood, Minn. The conference showcased the top awarded science fair projects from the 2018 Minnesota State Science Fair. 

Ellie Scheldberg presents her project at the 3M Young innovators conferenceEllie's project, "Making Pollution a Solution," focused on addressing the problem of food spoilage in parts of the world where access to refrigeration is limited.  

She was one of only 3 middle school students to present at this year's conference.  Students invited had the opportunity to present to many engineers and other 3M staff​​, as well as participate in an open dialogue luncheon with 3M's most senior engineers.   

Congratulations, Ellie!

Photos: At top, Ellie with Metcalf science teacher Cory Johnson. At right, Ellie presents her work at the conference.
Posted in Academics, Student Success | Tagged science, 3M, science fair, metcalf, pollution

Free summer meals available for children

Posted on May 22, 2018

Thanks to a federal program, breakfasts and lunches will be provided at no charge to all children, ages 1 to 18, this summer at several schools in Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191. Meals meet nutritional standards of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

All sites will be closed on Wednesday, July 4. Meals must be consumed on site and will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis.

These sites will serve breakfast from 7:45 to 8:45 a.m. and lunch from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.:

  • Gideon Pond Elementary, 613 E.130th St., Burnsville, June 13-Aug. 17, Mondays through Fridays.
  • Hidden Valley Elementary, 13875 Glendale Road, Savage, June 13-Aug. 17, Mondays through Fridays.
  • Nicollet Middle School, 400 E. 134th St., Burnsville, July 9-July 31, Mondays through Thursdays.

This site will serve breakfast from 7:30 to 8:15  a.m. and lunch from 10:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m:

  • Burnsville High School, 600 E. Highway 13, Burnsville, June 18-July 3, Mondays through Fridays.

Additional public sites with lunch only from 11 a.m. to noon:

  • Arbor Vista Mobile Home Village, 14750 W. Burnsville Pkwy., Burnsville, June 18-Aug. 15, Mondays and Wednesdays only.
  • Chancellor Manor, 14250 Irving Ave. S., Burnsville, June 19-Aug. 16, Tuesdays and Thursdays only.

This institution is an equal opportunity provider. Menus may be found at  

For more information, visit the District 191 Food and Nutrition Services webpage at or call 952-707-2051.

Posted in Parents | Tagged summer, summer meals, food service

Whaletale Publishing at MWS this summer

Posted on May 22, 2018

Would your student like to write and illustrate a Whale of Tale about his or her summertime adventures?

Sign up for more information on Summertime Whaletale Publishing by June 6, 2018.


Receive a basic information publishing packet -- everything you need to know about publishing a Whaletale book -- and weekly hints and tips throughout the summer. All we need is your email address, student name, grade level in 2018-2019. This is open to MWS students who will be in grades Kindergarten to 5th in the 2018-2019 school year.



Help your student keep up those writing and creative skills by encouraging them to write and illustrate a book about what happen during their summer vacation or a family vacation, or other special event or activity during the summer.

Completed books -- Students will bring in their completed book by the end of September, 2018 to their assigned classroom teacher or email completed pages to Pam Voigt at A publishing time will then be set up for each student to create their very own book.

Sign up today to get started on a Whale of a Tale.

Tagged whale tale, publishing, summer, marion w savage

Senior Carnival slated for Friday, May 25

Posted on May 21, 2018

Burnsville High School is hosting a senior carnival on Friday, May 25 for all seniors. This senior-only event is free and will be held during school hours in Bob Pates Stadium. 

The event is themed "Sparky's 18th Birthday Party" and will include the following:

  • Inflatables 
  • Yard games
  • Food trucks (optional food purchases; students can bring a bagged lunch)
    • MN Nice Cream
    • Kona Ice
    • Solo’s Pizza
    • Heavy Metal Grill
  • Kickball tournament
  • Dunk tank
  • Pedal Go-Carts

This is a great opportunity for students to hang out with their friends, relax and reminisce about their years at Burnsville High School.

Congratulations, Class of 2018 and best wishes for the future!


Posted in Parents, Activities | Tagged bhs, senior carnival, Class of 2018

How parents can support their child’s summer reading

Posted on May 17, 2018

Summer checklist: ride bike, jump rope, play ball, and READ!

It’s important that students spend time reading during June, July and August.

“During the school year, it’s so much fun to see our students’ love for reading,” said Katie Salmela, the elementary media coordinator in Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191. “Teachers and librarians want that love to continue all summer long!”

To avoid the “summer slide” or loss of learning which can happen during the summer months, Salmela encourages parents to help their children make time for reading every day.

There are many community and school resources to support summer reading – at no cost. Public libraries are wonderful places for books and free entertainment.  

Remember that students have access to thousands of eBooks through myOn Reader and MackinVIA.

If you’re wondering what to read, start with Salmela’s favorite books for elementary students: Mrs. Salmela’s Favorites 2018 ,  2017

Here’s a quick and fun overview of reading resources (narrated by students):

Summer Reading Video for Dakota County Residents (students who attend Sky Oaks, Gideon Pond, Sioux Trail, Edward Neill, Vista View, William Byrne and Rahn)

Summer Reading Video for Scott County Residents (students who attend Hidden Valley, Harriet Bishop and Marion W. Savage)

How do you find the right books for your child? Try these resources:

If you’d prefer a written version of all the info in the video:

  1. Students have 24/7 access to all of our district eBooks. The great thing about eBooks is that you never have to worry about losing them, damaging them, or returning them on time! There are book choices in Spanish, too. Our district has two main eBook options for elementary students: myOn Reader and MackinVIA. If you need help accessing eBooks, visit to watch the tutorials on how to access online student resources.

  2. Students can sign up to take part in summer reading programs at public libraries for free. Public libraries offer many fun events, including magicians, puppet shows, coding, robotics, arts and crafts, science exploration, makerspace activities, animal appearances, reading to therapy dogs and more!  
     •  If you live in Dakota County, visit this website to learn more about the summer reading program.
     •  If you live in Scott County, visit this website to learn about the summer reading program.  

  3. Students can take part in the reading programs offered by Barnes & Noble and Half Price Books. Both stores have similar programs that basically require children to log or track their reading, and then return the log once they’ve met the specified goal to receive a free book.  Click on the store links to learn more and download the reading logs.

Posted in Academics | Tagged summer, reading, literacy