District makes classroom adjustments

NEGAUNEE – Due to a large number of kindergartners and first-graders expected for the 2013-2014 school year, the Negaunee school board made class adjustments Monday’s meeting.

There are 128 students registered for kindergarten in the Negaunee Public Schools for next year and the current kindergarten class of about 133 is project to move on to the first grade in the district, Superintendent Jim Derocher said.

“Because of the large first-grade class, we’re looking to make the current five section first-grade class to a six section class, bringing the classroom size down to 22-23 students,” he said.

According to Derocher, the third-grade class will also need another section added to it. There are currently four sections for third, which will go to five sections for next year. This will bring the classroom size from 28 students down to 22-23 students, he said.

“Due to the large numbers projected at Lakeview (Elementary) we need additional classrooms,” Derocher said. “But currently we have no space available in Lakeview.”

Because there are no available rooms at Lakeview, the board voted to move the fifth-grade class to the Negaunee Middle School, he said. No new sections will be added to the fifth-grade class.

“At this point in time it looks as if the kindergarten class will stay high, so it’s looking like this won’t just be a one year move,” Derocher said.

If the district retains all of its current students with the addition to the 128 kindergartners, the student count for the district will be about 1,508 for the 2013-2014 year.

Also at the meeting, the board approved Integrated Design Inc. to design and provide administrative services to replace the roof at the high school and Miner’s Dry. According to Derocher, bids will be solicited in the next few weeks so the project can be completed over the summer.

“The (high school) roof is approaching 30 years old and we are having leaking problems, water problems as the spring approaches,” Derocher said. “We’re having water problems on our third floor, so it’s time to do some repair work and replacement.”

The board also discussed the millage renewal that is coming up in May. The district is asking residents to renew its non-homestead millage of 18 mills.

Adelle Whitefoot can be reached at 906-486-4401.