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School board members Jensen, Sletten sworn into office

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Osage kindergarten teacher Janet Larrison and second grade teacher Lori Randall brought a few of their students to give a presentation at the Nov. 15 Osage Community School Board meeting.

Lori Randall students at school board

Lincoln Elementary School second graders Blake Larrison, Cy Johnston and Annabella Dodge put on a robot presentation at the Nov. 15 Osage Community School District board meeting.

They shared new robots added to their arsenal, including Bee Bots, Cubetto, and Finch. The crowd watched as a robot used black marker to draw figures on paper.

“We are doing amazing things with technology, and we promote that a lot,” said Superintendent Barb Schwamman. “You hear us talking about it because these kids need to have those skills.

“We call ourselves a learning lab. Other schools from all the other AEA’s are coming in to observe us on a weekly basis because we’re doing it right. It starts with kindergarten. We don’t teach only the computer part, they’re using it for literacy, math and science.”

Randall began her journey into STEM a few years ago, and she and her students are now hooked.

“We are trying to teach kids that they have many different opportunities not only to play with technology, but also to be creative and use problem solving skills,” Randall said after the meeting. “These technology pieces are only one of the many ways that we do this. We also use a variety of unplugged activities, which means they are screen free, and we tie all of our computer integration into our curriculum.”

In other business:

• New board member Kelsey Jensen and returning board member Rick Sletten were sworn into office.

Kelsey Jensen sworn in

New Osage Community School District Board Member Kelsey Jensen is sworn into office by Helen Burrington.

Sletten resumed his duties as board president, swearing in Laura Potter as vice president.

Rick Sletten sworn in

Returning Osage Community School District Board Member Rick Sletten is sworn into office by Helen Burrington.

• Osage Community High School Principal Tim Hejhal announced he will leave his post effective at the end of the 2021-22 schoolyear.

• Lincoln Elementary School Principal Greg Adams and high school English teacher Katerina Walk are adding to their busy schedules by choosing to serve as wrestling volunteers.

• Several Osage students received all-state music honors, including one who set a new mark for the school. Henry Mauser, piano accompanist, the only one selected by unanimous decision, is first chair piano as a freshman in high school.

“This is the first time Osage has had a pianist get to that spot,” Schwamman said.

In addition, Emma Blaha was selected for chorus, Ashley Muhs for band, Paige Mehmen as alternate in band, and Maury Fox in orchestra.

As well, 18 students were selected to the TIC Honor Band: Darren Adams, Brooklyn Brock, Loreal Scott, Kaitlin Olson, Joryn Hanson, Kaebre Sullivan, Muhs, Mehmen, Gianna Kittleson, Mauser, Bailey Nasstrom, Landon Christensen, Michael Johnson, Chase Potter, Alexa Thyer, Mathew Johnson, Mari Fox and Lauren Swenson.

In middle school, making the NCIBA Middle School Honor Band were Leah Kuennen, Melanie Bruesewitz, Mylie Havig, Kaylie Havig, Adaya Thurnau, Lydia Koch and Kendra Steiert.

Making it for OPUS were Kylee Burkholder (fifth grade), Oliva Muhs (sixth grade) and Henry Mauser (ninth grade).

Accepted into the Iowa Bandmasters Association All-Iowa Eighth Grade Honor Band were Lydia Koch and Kendra Steiert. Kaylee Havig was recognized as an alternate.

Jason W. Selby is the community editor for the Mitchell Country Press News. He can be reached at 515-971-6217, or by email at


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