Superintendent's Report

Outlining need for cafetorium

The School Board is asking the taxpayers to approve a $500,000.00 per year technology levy (question 1) and a 7.6 million dollar building bond (Question 2). Projects included in question 2 are a cafetorium, new playground equipment and surface, permanent bathrooms at K.P. Kompelien Field, a new wrestling practice room, a new parking lot surface, and fixing the drainage issue by the junior high softball field, and a safer drop-off/pick-up zone for students.
In today’s article, I will outline the need for a cafetorium.

What is a cafetorium?
A cafetorium combines the concepts of a cafeteria and an auditorium into one space.

Why does the district need a new space for breakfast/lunch?
Currently, lunch and breakfast are held on the east side of the 2003 gym, making that space unusable for anything but meals from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily.
The district would like to use this space for its physical education classes, morning athletic practices, and inside recesses. Additionally, the noise level during lunch is extremely loud, making it difficult for the physical education teacher to communicate with the students during class while on the other half of the gym. A new cafetorium will allow the entire gym to be used during the day with less noise interference.
Another issue with having breakfasts/lunches in the 2003 gym is the floor is wearing out due to all the scrubbing needed after mealtimes and additional traffic. In summer 2020, the district had that gym floor refinished, and the company informed us that the east side of the gym had lost five more years of life compared to the west side. At this rate, we will be forced to replace the entire gym floor much sooner than we should have to which comes at considerable cost. Also, about a week ago, our custodian, Les Engler, noticed that areas of the East gym floor were starting to crack. A new cafetorium will allow us to install a floor that is designed to handle the impact of daily lunch.
Finally, when elementary students stay inside for recess due to inclement weather, they cannot use the east side of gym due to it being used for lunch and are forced to have recess in their classrooms or sit in the hallways. Indoor recess was required 25 times last winter, 16 of those days were consecutive. A cafetorium would open up the east side of the 2003 gym, which would eliminate the need to have students have recess in the classrooms and hallways.

Why does the district need a new space for drama and concerts?
The drama and arts departments currently hold their practices and performances in the main gym (Viking Gym). By providing a dedicated space through the construction of a cafetorium, a dedicated space and improved experience could be provided for our students and spectators.
The construction of a new cafetorium would solve the following issues experienced when using the Viking Gym:
a. Currently, scheduling is challenging, as many activities need to use the Viking Gym at the same time
b. Currently, there are no dressing rooms for the actors to give them privacy
c. Currently, there is no dedicated space for lights and a soundboard
d. Currently, there is very little space to store props and sets
e. The acoustics in the gym are very poor
f. The current stage is not ADA compliant

The construction of a cafetorium would solve many issues the district faces with both the current lunchroom and Viking Gym, while maximizing our dollars by building a dual-use space.
As a reminder, absentee voting began on Sept. 17 and runs through Nov. 1. If you are interested in obtaining an absentee ballot, don't hesitate to contact Tara at 507-872-6532.

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The Minneota Mascot
Address: 201 N. Jefferson
Minneota, MN 56264

Phone:(507) 872-6492