Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Monday, December 29, 2008
Friday, December 26, 2008
- Parks & Streets: Weber;
- Sewer & Cemetery: Schmale;
- Water & Buildings: Axline;
- Safety: Cerny and Ed Dvorak.
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
DACA member's would like to thank Farmers Cooperative, the Legion Auxiliary, and Corrine Tyser for donating money towards this event, as well as the United Methodist Women for supplying the cutout cookies.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
President Brad Havlat called the regular monthly meeting of the Board of Education of Saline County School District 76-0044, a.k.a. as Dorchester Public Schools, to order at 7:35 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 22, 2008. All members, except Mark Bors, were present along with Superintendent Brian Redinger, Principal Mitch Kubicek, Joyce Karl and Scott Pohl, Athletic Director. Motion by Hansen, second by Kahle to approve the minutes of the November regular meeting, with appropriate date change for the December meeting. Members voting yes to the motion were Hansen, Kahle, Boller, Pracheil and Havlat. Bors absent. Motion passed 5-0.
After verification of publication of the meeting notice in the Crete News, local postings of the meeting notice (Dorchester Schools, Farmers Coop, First State Bank and the Village Office) and the advanced receipt of the meeting agenda and other meeting materials by individual board members, the President stipulated that meeting minutes should reflect that this meeting was held in compliance with the Neb. Open Meetings Law. It was also noted the Open Meeting Act Poster is posted in the boardroom. There was no request for change of agenda.
The November treasurer’s report was reviewed. Motion by Boller, second by Pracheil to approve report. Voting yes were Boller, Pracheil, Kahle, Hansen and Havlat. Bors absent. Motion passed 5-0.
Motion by Hansen, second by Kahle to approve November end of month and December expenditures for the General Fund, Special Building Fund and Bond Fund. Voting yes were Hansen, Kahle, Boller, Pracheil and Havlat. Bors absent. Motion passed 5-0.
Mark Bors arrived at 8 p.m.
Building/Grounds Committee: Supt. Redinger will call Crete Lumber to see when the inside gym doors can be installed. The estimate for ADA door openers for the front east doors was discussed, along with the installation of railing for the entrance. Handicapped accessible and van accessible parking stalls were discussed. Specs will be obtained with further discussion to be held in January. The heating regulation problem was also discussed and Supt. Redinger will continue to monitor room temps.
Principal’s Report: Principal Kubicek shared that he consulted with mental health therapists about a possible program for students who are not experiencing academic success. He stressed that this is just an investigative step only and will get back to the board at a later date. He reported that the Apex program being currently used in credit recovery class is a success with the possibility of being used for a rigorous summer program. Otter Creek and Accelerated Math will be implemented in the future and Mr. Kubicek has applied for a grant to help defray the costs of these programs. The data on our State Report Card was discussed. Mr. Kubicek has secured a grant that will make it possible for 17 teachers and our administration to take part in a book study. Student surveys were distributed and results will be shared with the Board at a later date. Dorchester Schools has been approved as an ACT testing site that will be able to host up to 36 students in April and June.
New Business: Building accessibility for our patrons was discussed and will be tabled until the January 2009 meeting. Motion by Kahle, second by Hansen to approve Horace Mann as the District 44’s 403(b) plan administrator. Voting yes were Kahle, Hansen, Boller, Pracheil, Bors and Havlat. Motion passed 6-0. The Board instructed AD Pohl to order the portable seating for the multi-purpose room.
Signed: Ron Kahle, Secretary of the Dorchester Board of Education.
Monday, December 22, 2008
- DHS No. 2 In D-Club Invite: Despite wind chill temperatures around twenty below zero, the D-Club Round Robin Wrestling Invite was held in Dorchester on Saturday. Of the 11 squads competing, DHS finished finished second only to powerhouse East Butler, which had 138 points in team scoring to Dorchester's 98. DHS topped third-place Weeping Water and fourth-place Friend. Other teams competing were Humboldt-Table Rock-Steinauer/Pawnee City; Sutton; Meridian; Heartland; South Central; McCool Junction; and Tri County. Russel Barark was the Longhorns' lone gold medal winner, grabbing the top spot in the 215 lb. class. DHS Athletic Director expressed his "sincere thanks" to those who helped with the tournament. Pohl noted that "many students, alumni, parents, family members, and district patrons volunteered their time and expertise to help make the tournament successful." "The efforts of everyone involved proves what a great community Dorchester is," Pohl said.
- Dec. 23 Basketball Games Postponed: Tuesday's DHS boys and girls basketball games at Sterling have been rescheduled for Thursday, Jan. 8,2009, due to Sterling canceling school because of icy conditions in the area. Also, no make-up date has yet been announced for last Thursday's (Dec. 18) postponed contests at home against Shickley. Stay tuned to the Times for details.
- Two Dorchester Scholars Earn UNL Degrees: Two Dorchester scholars were among those who received degrees from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln on Saturday, where U.S. Sen.-elect Mike Johanns delivered the commencement address. Earning her B.S. in chemical engineering was Tisha Amber Roth, while John Adam Havlat received his B.S. in Agribusiness. Our congratulations to both of these hard working students.
- Schweitzers Welcome New Daughter: The Schweitzers will celebrate the holidays with a new member of the family this year. Kelli (Chrastil) and Shane Schweitzer of Dorchester became proud parents of a baby girl on Friday, Dec. 19, at BryanLGH East. (UPDATE 12/23: A reader has informed us the Schweitzer baby was delivered last Friday, not Wednesday as previously reported.)
Tom & Jerrys
Seperate egg in two bowls. Add Rum & Brandy to the yolk and beat together until frothy. In the other bowl, beat the egg white until it peaks then add sugar and beat until stiff. Fold into the liqour mixture. Pour into a coffee mug and top with the water, milk or coffee.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
2. Humphrey St. Francis (3-1), 46.5000
3. Wauneta-Palisade (2-1), 45.6667
4. Alma (4-0), 45.2500
5. Sandhills/Thedford (4-0), 44.7500
Sunday, December 14, 2008
- DHS Grapplers Take 3rd At Bob Oliver Invitational: On Thursday, the Longhorn wrestlers took third place out of nine teams at the Bob Oliver Invitational in Daykin. DHS trailed only Palmyra and Friend in team scoring. DHS had three first-place finishers. In the 125 lb. class, DHS grappler Brandon Schwlsow won his championship match against a Sandy Creek/Lawrence-Nelson wrestler in a 7-5 decision. In the 145 class, DHS' Adam Kahle pinned his Heartland opponent in 3:43. And DHS' Russel Barak pinned his Sandy Creek/Lawrence-Nelson opponent in only 39 seconds in the 189 lb. championship match. In yesterday's (Dec. 13) meet at Osceola, Dorchester finished seventh out of 16 squads. The Times is still awaiting individual results.
- Dorchester Invite To Be Held Saturday;Volunteers Needed: The Longhorn wrestlers will be in action this Saturday, Dec. 20, at the Dorcheter Invitational. The D-Club is looking for DHS wrestlers and student managers to assist with the many responsibilities of running the tournament, including keeping score, running the clocks, and other various duties. If you know of a former Longhorn wrestler or student manager who would like to volunteer at the Dorchester Tournament, or if you would like to volunteer yourself, please call Dorchester athletic director Scott Pohl at (402) 946-2781.
- DHS Girls Get Win No. 3, While Boys Lose By Three at High Plains: On Friday night, the DHS Lady Longhorns (3-0) -- rated No. 11 in Class D-1 -- scored their third consecutive win of the young season, handily beating High Plains 49-26. The Lady 'Horns were led by Charity Springer with 13 points and Amy Havlat with a dozen. (For more, click here to see the York News-Times' game summary.) Meanwhile, the boys' basketball team (2-1) lost a heart breaker to High Plains, 61-58. DHS led 11-5 at the quarter and 30-22 at halftime, only to be outscored 30-15 in the final eight minutes. The Longhorns placed four players in double numbers, led by Brandon Zoubek and Spencer Kotas with 13 each. Alex Walton and Logan Morris both had 12. (See the York News Times' story here.) Both Longhorn teams will see action again this Tuesday, Dec. 16, in road contests at Harvard.
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
- DHS B-Ballers Now 2-0: Rollin', rollin', rollin'. That could be the theme song for the Longhorn basketball teams if this keeps up. Both Dorchester basketball squads emerged Tuesday evening with victories at home. The Dorchester boys (2-0) handily beat Diller-Odell, 67-54. DHS was led by Brandon Bruha, 20 pts., Alex Walton, 14 pts., and Brandon Zoubek, 13 pts. as the Longhorns gathered 33 rebounds. Meanwhile, the No. 11 Lady Longhorns (2-0) whipped Diller-Odell 56-44. Both Longhorn teams take the court again Friday in road contests against High Plains Community.
- Kahle Ranked No. 6 In His Division: According to the Omaha World-Herald, DHS junior Adam Kahle is ranked No. 6 in Class D-1's 145 lb. division. Kahle and two Friend grapplers are the only wrestlers in Saline County rated by the Omaha paper.
- Another Football Accolade For Bruha: The football honors continue to pour in for DHS senior Brandon Bruha, who was named this week to the Omaha World-Herald's Honorable Mention Class D-1 team.
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Sunday, December 7, 2008
Adam Kahle Takes Gold At Season-Opening Wrestling Meet: DHS' Adam Kahle took first place at Friend's Lil' Dawg Invitational on Saturday. It took Kahle only 1:01 to pin a Wilber grappler in the championship match, as the Longhorn junior sets his sights on a repeat bid to State this February. DHS finished 8th in the team standings out of 11 teams. However, all but two of the squads (DHS and Bruning-Davenport) were Class C teams.
Bruha Is State's Leading Punter At Season's End: Now that the high school football season is over and the statistics have been tallied, DHS' Brandon Bruha is officially the state of Nebraska's leading punter for the 2008 campaign. Bruha led all Nebraska high school punters, regardless of class size, with a 41 yard-per-punt average in 22 kicks. Bruha also made the list of leaders in tacklers for 2008, landing at No. 19, withe 27 unassisted tackles and 79 assisted. Bruha was also named to the Lincoln Journal-Star's All-State Honorable Mention team for Class D-1. We salute this DHS football standout.
Osceola & Shelby Give New Look To CRC: The Crossroads Conference is getting a makeover in 2009. The York News-Times reports tha beginning next school year, members of the new CRC Conference will include: Dorchester, High Plains (formerly Polk-Hordville), Hampton, Exeter-Milligan, McCool Junction, Osceola, Shelby, Giltner, Meridian, Rising City, Shickley and Clay Center.
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Monday, December 1, 2008
Sunday, November 30, 2008
Thursday, November 27, 2008
This message is especially relevant at a time when the outside world presents so much uncertainty and fear. We hope you will enjoy it as much as we did, and that it will serve as a reminder to count your blessings -- everyday.
"Sweet home Dorchester! Oh sweet Nebraska! On this
Thanksgiving we have so many thing to be grateful for.
"You never really know how amazing something, or someplace,
or someone is when you don't have it or them. I lived out of state for several
years and during that time I reminded myself almost daily of the things I
missed back home and am thankful for.
"On this Thanksgiving, I will once again take time to give
thanks for those things that make life worth living. They are...
1.) The fall harvest
2.) My small town and the feeling of community
3.) A Main Street I can walk with no noise, litter or fear of violence
4.) Mom & pop businesses & no big box stores
5.) Dorchester sports
6.) Small town chatter, even the gossip
7.) Hunters, farmers and our community elders
8.) Not being honked at in your car when you don't run a red light
9.) The smell of a wood burning stove or fireplace
10.) Pumpkin pie, homemade jelly and all the great local baking
"This is a good start. Oh yes, I am also thankful for my
great-grand parents who came to Dorchester to start their
families. It is because of them Dorchester and Nebraska is my
Mother, wife and farmer
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
All things considered, school district patrons have every right to expect high standards from their school's administration, instructors and students. (It is also why district patrons should expect efforts to encourage young people to return to their home area after college so they can contribute to the local economy, but that is another story for another day.)
So how does Dorchester Public School compare to other Nebraska schools?
Using statistics found on the Nebraska Department of Education Web site, the Times has compiled key figures to give our readers a good idea of where Dorchester Public School is succeeding and where there is room for improvement.
For example, when it comes to preparation of college-bound student, Dorchester appears to be doing considerably better than the majority of other public schools in Nebraska. For school year 2006-07, the latest year for which statistics are available, the average composite ACT score of Dorchester students was 23.8. That compares favorably to the 22.1 statewide average and the 21.2 U.S. average.
Dorchester School earns an "exemplary" rating in both reading and mathematics following standardized tests taken in the 2006-07 school year -- again, the latest results available on the Education Department's site. The statewide assessment tests are given to students in grades 4, 8 and 11.
The vast majority of Dorchester students met the state's reading standards. For school year 2006-07, the 95 percent of fourth graders, 94 percent of eighth graders, and 84 percent of high school juniors could meet the reading standards. This included English Language Learners and Special Education students.
As a whole, Dorchester students scored slightly lower on mathematics and writing assessments. Still, scores in both subjects were well above 70 percent. The lone exception were the eleventh graders, with one-third of the class failing to meet the state's writing test. (While 100 percent of the class' females met the writing standards, only 43 percent of the class' males were able to do so.)
A few more interesting facts we found:
- For school year 2006-2007, the average Dorchester teacher salary was $34,906 (not including health insurance and other benefits) compared to the state average teacher salary of $42,080.
- About 98 percent of DHS teachers were endorsed, compared to the state average of 94 percent. (Endorsements mean the teachers majored in the subjects they teach.)
- Dorchester's graduation rate in 2007 was 100 percent.
- About 8 percent of Dorchester students were English Language Learners (primarily Spanish speaking) compared to the state average of 6.5 percent.
- About 18 percent of Dorchester students were Special Education students, compared to the state average of about 15 percent, meaning additional expenses for the local school district.
- Exactly 80 percent of Dorchester fourth graders receiving free or reduced-price lunches met or exceeded the state's writing standards (NOTE: This is a clarification of our orginial post.)
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Gov. Dave Heineman last week announced that nearly $320,000 in grants funding had been awarded to 13 Nebraska communities through the Building Entrepreneurial Communities Act (BECA), which supports regional economic and community development partnerships in rural areas of the state.
Some of the projects receiving grants include:
- $32,355 for the towns of Red Cloud and Guide Rock to promote regional businesses.
- $39,600 for Dawson County and the city of Cozad to create marketing materials to help attract and retain residents, promote the Dawson County Careers Web site to those outside Nebraska, and provide entrepreneurship training in technical trades for area youth.
- $32,000 for the Panhandle village of Lewellen and Garden County Schools to develop entrepreneurship skills among students and local residents, as well as develop green industry and eco-tourism opportunities.
- $36,000 for the Norfolk Area Recruiters Initiative, a partnership between the cities of Battle Creek, Madison and Norfolk and Cuming County, to implement a recruiting campaign aimed at former northeast Nebraska residents that includes Web site development and direct mail.
- $36,315 for a partnership between Phelps County and the village of Funk for marketing campaign to recruit alumni and others with compelling local connections to move back to the area.
It is worth noting that only 18 partnerships applied for funding this year. Again, 13 projects were funded.
We at the Times like the idea of smaller communities working together to grow their businesses and retain their younger residents. Perhaps the new members of the Dorchester Village Board can convince their peers that Dorchester needs to become more aggressive in forming a long-term strategy that includes partnering with local businesses and the school in pursuit of statewide grants -- and to allow and encourage the use of village staff resources to do so.
Maybe the members of Dorchester Area Community Association can work with the Village Board or help raise funds to provide matching dollars to improve the chances of Dorchester landing one of these statewide grants.
The BECA program seems to be a good place to start. (For more information on BECA or the application process, contact Linda Fettig at (308) 749-2291, or email email@example.com.) We know there are bright, energetic folks in other small Saline County communities, such as Friend and Wilber, who would jump at the opportunity to collaborate with Dorchester on such an effort. It's worth a look.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
- DHS Takes Fifth Place At UNL Math Day: DHS students solidified their school's reputation for excellence in mathematics with a top five finish at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln's 19th-annual Math Day last week. UNL's Math Day brings together hundreds of students from across Nebraska. The event consists of two individual and two team mathematics competitions. All students started with a multiple-choice preliminary exam called PROBE I ( Problems Requiring Original and Brilliant Effort ). In Class D, the top five teams in PROBE I were: Nebraska Evangelical Lutheran 50.0, College View Academy 49.33, Bertrand 49.0, Heartland Homeschoolers 48.67, Dorchester 43.33. Dorchester was the only Saline County school to place at UNL Math Day.
- Longhorns Named To All-District Football Squads: District D1-2 football coaches have named Logan Morris to the all-district second team offense, while Spencer Kotas has received honorable mention. Brandon Bruha has been named to the all-district first team defense, with Morris named to the second team defense and Kotas again receiving honorable mention. Bruha has also been named all-district first team punter.
- Lady Longhorns Recognized by CRC: DHS junior Karmen Lawver was recently named to the Crossroads Conference first team all-conference volleyball team, while senior Wendy Boller was recognized as an honorable mention recipient.
- Rev. Roger Wolfe Makes Front Page Of Lincoln Journal Star: We at the Times were impressed a couple of weeks ago when we saw the face of Dorchester resident Rev. Roger Wolfe grace the front page of the Nov. 12 edition of the Lincoln Journal Star. Rev. Wolfe, who is chaplain of the American Legion Dist. 11, spoke at this month's Veterans Day program at Milford High School. One local reader who heard Rev. Wolfe's speech told the Times: "I wish I could have recorded it. He never says the same thing twice because he speaks from the heart and captures what he observes and hears from those surrounding him at the moment."
Monday, November 17, 2008
The Associated Press reports that "former employees who say they weren't paid for work away from the production line are suing a Crete slaughterhouse." The federal lawsuit filed against Farmland Foods and Smithfield Foods alleges hourly employees haven't been paid for time spent dressing in protective gear, sanitizing tools, sharpening knives and walking to work stations, among other things.
The AP report continues: "Mauricio Guarjardo of Columbus and Maria Guzman Morales of Dorchester filed the class-action lawsuit Thursday on behalf of themselves and current and former employees going back to September 2005."
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Crete firefighters extricated Brandt from the truck. There were no other reports of injuries. Brandt was taken by LifeFlight to BryanLGH Medical Center West. He was listed in serious condition as of early Thursday afternoon. The crash closed Highway 33 for at least an hour and a half.