1701 N. 9th Ave.
Virginia, Mn 55792
Phone: (218)-749-8130

March 29, 2015, 11:24 pm
real feel: 35°F
current pressure: 30 in
humidity: 74%
wind speed: 4 mph W

Small Schools with Big Opportunities


ISD 2142 sets high expectations for students! Our teachers provide quality education through proven best practices. Our curriculum is based on the standards set by the Minnesota Department of Education with innovative initiatives such as Cognitive Guided Instruction (CGI). You can be assured your child is receiving the best education we can provide.

ISD 2142 schools are the most technologically advanced schools in the area. With the newly constructed facilities students are able to learn through innovative programming such as Flex Wednesday and Project based learning. Personal learning plans are provided for each child assuring their educational success. Our Four-star Minnesota Early Childhood programming provides the step up children need to be successful in their education and eventual work place.

We strive to provide a place for your child to feel a sense of belonging, where there are teachers and staff that understand and will work with them to do their very best. We welcome you to join us!   If you are interested to talk with a Principal about enrolling your child in ISD 2142 schools please contact one of the following administrators at Our Schools or by calling 218-749-8130 to talk with an administrator about enrollment.

Inclement Weather Notice

imageSchool may be cancelled when the Superintendent and/or Principal believe the safety of students and employees is threatened by severe weather.  A decision to close school will be made as early in the day as possible.  School closing announcements will be sent via the Infinite Campus Alert System, as well as broadcast on local television and radio stations and placed on media websites.  In the event the district does not close school and conditions in your area are bad, or you think it is unsafe, you, as a parent or guardian, should make your own decision about sending your child to school.  If you will be keeping your child home when school is in session, please call the school office and notify them of your decision.  Thank you.

Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments (MCAs) in ISD 2142

MDEMinnesota Comprehensive Assessments (MCAs) are very important to gauge the progress of students and of the school, and are used to determine whether a school has made Adequate Yearly Progress. These tests are designed by the state to measure progress on the Minnesota State Standards. This year the MCA reading tests for grades 3-8 and 10 are online. The MCA-III Mathematics tests for grades 3-8 and 11 will also continue in that format.

What can you do to help your child prepare for testing? 1. Make sure they have a good nights sleep. The optimum amount of sleep is 8.5- 10 hours of sleep for students in this age range. 2. Make sure they have a good breakfast. Foods like eggs, nuts, yogurt, and cottage cheese are better for testing than muffins or high sugar foods. Also, water is better than soda for a pre-test meal. 3. Encourage students to try to show their best work on the tests.

We want students to show growth in their learning. We want them to take pride in their work. If you would like to look at the online samplers they are available on the Minnesota State Assessment website. They will allow you to see the look and feel of the state assessment while providing example problems at each grade level. There are also activities for students on the site. The site is Pearson Access, choose Minnesota and there is a tab for Families. The link to that site can also be found on www.isd2142.net. For more information you can visit the Minnesota Department of Education website under “Just Parents”.

If you have any questions, please contact your building principal or you can contact me at the number below. Kristi Berlin Curriculum and Technology Integration Director District Assessment Coordinator kberlin@isd2142.k12.mn.us 218-749-8130

Letter from Ms. Berlin with additional information concerning testing in ISD 2142

Veteran’s Day at South Ridge

Student receiving award for winning writing contest.

Student receiving award for winning writing contest.

“Veteran’s Day not only honors those who have served our country in the past, but also those who are serving at the present. Veterans present a true cross-section of our society.They are from all races, creeds, faiths, sexes and ethnic heritages – but all are truly Americans.

During a time of conflict or of peace they have left families, friends and careers to protect our country and way of life. They have left the ‘civilian” segment of the population and have now become a part of the military. Answering this “call of duty” binds them together in a unique way.

I know that some of you will follow this course in your life. I wish you good luck and welcome your joining, whichever branch of service you choose. Hopefully this service will eventually secure what Vets want, and that is peace.” – Bob Larsen VFW Post 3044 Commander


The all-school assembly was held on November 11th in the school’s gym. The program began with the South Ridge Community Choir singing the “Star Spangled Banner” followed by a number of speakers, demonstration and explanation of how to fold a flag as well as elementary choir groups singing patriotic songs.  Awards were given to students for their writing and coloring contest submissions from 2013 and 2014. We wish to thank the community for their part in the program as well as all Veteran’s and Auxiliary members who attended the event.  We thank you for your service.

South Ridge Community Choir

South Ridge Community Choir

Bob Larsen VFW Post 3044 Commander

Bob Larsen VFW Post 3044 Commander

Greta Lindgren, Women's Auxillary

Greta Lindgren, Women’s Auxiliary


Elementary Choir

Elementary Choir

 Student receiving award for writing contest

For the Love of Reading….

Reading-3-225x300This year, we will be working diligently to help our students in Kindergarten through 12th grade improve their reading and comprehension skills. In an effort to encourage our students, we have created a “Reading Inspiration” wall.  When a student has finished reading a book, he / she should write the title of the book, the author, and his / her name and grade on a slip of paper and should turn it in to his / her teacher.  Once a week, the Journalism class will be collecting the papers from the teachers and will be adding the names of students, books, and authors to the wall.  Students’ names will go into a monthly drawing.  It is going to be exciting to see how many color chips we can fill in.  And, when we run out…there are a world of colors waiting to be used.  In fact, we are challenging each of you -whether you are a student, parent, business owner, friend, relative, or leader in our communities-to be a part of this exciting adventure.  Help us encourage and foster a love of reading in our students.  Ask questions about what is being read.  Suggest good books.  Read with your child.  Let’s make this an adventure that inspires us all!



Reading-1-300x225The Northeast Range Journalism  class has been working hard to create this learning incentive.  Thank you to junior Lyric Johnson, for tirelessly striving to get the paint chips “just perfect”! Several local businesses have already joined us in our educational efforts.  We would like to thank the manager and employees at the Virginia Sherwin Williams for their generous donations of paint samples (hundreds of them), so that we could create our “Let Books Color Your Imagination” wall and colorfully design hundreds of bookmarks for reading incentives.  Also, a special “thanks” goes out to the Lossing Building Center, of Babbitt,  for donating additional “paint chip” supplies for bookmarks.  And finally, many thanks to the CEC Cinema 6 Theater in Virginia / Mountain Iron.  Because their staff believes in our educational endeavors, they are committed to donating movie memorabilia-like posters and activity books- as well as larger gifts and books that will be used for achievement incentives.

North Woods First Responders

First-ResponderA number of  North Woods students are now certified first responders!  Each of these students are certified by the state of Minnesota and some of them are even on the Orr Ambulance crew.  These students will begin meeting regularly at school to begin a first responder program that will involve students teaching students how to respond to emergencies.

Prairie Fire Theater Visits Cherry School

IMG_3109-1024x682During the week of November 3rd-7th the Prairie Fire Theater visited Cherry with two of their professional stage actors to put on a production of Peter Pan.  Many elementary and a few high school students signed up for the play and received roles.

Two performances were held on Friday.  One in the afternoon for the students, and another in the evening for the community members.  The audiences enjoyed themselves immensely.

Cherry School thanks Community Education Coordinator Carol Andrews for bringing the Prairie Fire Theater in and working with the students to put on this show for students and community.

Storytelling through Theatre and Writing

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Video documenting the MSAB Art’s Learning grant

The third and culminating performance with Frank Theatre teaching artists Wendy Knox and Emily Zimmer was February 26th in the South Ridge School forum. Students had been working for six weeks on storytelling activities, theatre games, building on writing skills and dissecting a story to find meaning – all of which aided them in the re-telling of The Pied Piper retold by the 3rd-4th grades, Three Strong Women retold by the afterschoolSTEAM students, 3rd-4th Grades,  Anansi Searches for a Fool, Grade 7 Design and Anansi Plays Dead Grade 7 Design students.

Original music was performed by students as well which was composed by Twin Cities musician and educator Marya Hart. Lyrics were written by the students during a writing activity.

In the story of “The Pied Piper of Hamelin” The town of Hamelin was full of rats and were unable to do anything. Even the cats were not able to kill the rats. One day, a fellow  came to town called the Pied Piper. He went to the Mayor and asked him, “What will you pay me if I free your town of every single rat?” The mayor offered 10,000 coins. Happy with the offer, the Pied Piper started playing his pipe. Hearing the shrill, keen note, every rat came out from its hole and started following him into the water and waited till every rat had drowned.

Now the town was free. After all the rats were dead, the Pied Piper returned and asked the Mayor for his money. The Mayor said that he could only give him twenty pounds for such an easy job. Pied Piper wanted to teach him a lesson. This time he played a different tune. Hearing his music, the children came out of their houses as the Pied Piper led the children far, far away. The Mayor sent his men to look for the piper and bring the children back but none could find the lost children.

In the story of the “Three Strong Women” tells of Forever-Mountain is a famous wrestler, smug and rather conceited–until he meets Maru-me. Along with her mother and grandmother, she shows him what real strength is. Under their tutelage, he gains not only physical prowess, but the humility of the truly strong. This version of the Japanese tall tale is filled with sly humor and witty exaggeration. The lesson of kindness being stronger than hate.

In the story “Anansi Searches for a Fool” the lazy Anansi, the famed West African trickster figure, decides to go fishing, he looks around for a fool he can convince to do all the work. Imagine his surprise when hawk, also known for his cleverness, offers to accompany him. Anansi continues to trick his other friends and family until they have had enough and run him out of town. This Ashanti folktale, which illustrates the point that “When you dig a hole for someone else, you will fall into it yourself,” is a humorous story of a trickster being caught in his own trap.

In the story, “Anansi Plays Dead”, There was a famine in the land and Anansi thinks about only himself. He began to plot out how he could have the best crops for himself. Usually West Africans always give the richest part of the animal to the “leader” or father of the house. Its kinda like the social class but modified/conformed to family ranked. So he tricks his family into thinking he is dead and they bury him in the richest part of the garde. Every night he sneaks out and eats until full. Eventually he is found out by his family and he feels so embarrassed. “From that day until now, Anansi has not wanted to face people because of their scoffing, jeering, and that is why he is often found hiding in dark corners.” When you have commited a crime in the town you are held to be very shameful. West African usually disowns people that they put to shame.

Considerable effort was made by South Ridge teachers, district office administration and Frank Theatre teaching artists to provide this opportunity. By the Minnesota State Arts Board approving this Art’s Learning grant South Ridge was provided the opportunity.

The Minnesota State Arts Board is a state agency that stimulates and encourages the creation, performance, and appreciation of the arts in the state. The Arts Learning grant program offers funding for projects that help lifelong learners acquire knowledge and understanding of and skills in the arts. Projects must provide participatory learning and engage learners with skilled teaching artists and high quality artistic experiences. Arts and culture are central to Minnesota’s educational system and lifelong learning opportunities. The arts develop creative minds that maximize new opportunities and find solutions to life’s challenges. In Minnesota, the arts industry is an integral part of the economy. Because of the arts, Minnesota communities are successful, dynamic, attractive places to live and work.

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This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund; and by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.


Cherry Tigers Softball

chs sball1Congratulations to the Section 7A Cherry Tigers Softball Team!  For the fifth straight year the Tigers will return to the State Tournament. Great job Cherry Tiger Softball on placing Fourth at the MSHSL State Softball Tournament!  We are proud of you and your great season!

Tower-Soudan Elementary Science Fair

Spring 2014 029 Spring 2014 018 The Tower-Soudan Elementary put on a fantastic Science Fair on Tuesday, May 13th.  There were many displays and demonstrations for all to see.  There were displays on the states of matter, various examples chemical reactions, and displays of a variety of substances that the kids created.  The kids created posters and displays to explain what they were doing and provided great demonstrations of their chosen experiments.  It was a busy, and maybe a bit messy, afternoon.

Pow-wow at NER

pow-wow3 pow-wow1The Tower-Soudan Elementary visited NER on Friday, May 16th to swim and enjoy a Pow-wow.  The kids enjoyed a morning of swimming in the pool before joining the NER kids for lunch.  After lunch and recess, both elementaries were treated to a wonderful pow-wow in the afternoon.  It was a great time and the kids had fun learning more about what happens during a pow-wow and dancing.

Elementary Track and Field Day at Northeast Range

The Elementary Track and Field was held on Tuesday, May 28 in the Northeast Range football field.  The day couldn’t have been more perfect as the students enjoyed the sunshine and activities which included running races and team-building skills.  tf8-1024x576The students each received a NER Field Day t-shirt which were purchased with funds from the School Mall Fundraiser.  Thank you to the PTO who provided a water station for our students.