As the work to monitor and adjust the implementation of new grade spans progresses, the Grade Configuration Steering Committee continues to meet. Four of the original seven project planning teams have completed their work; the three remaining project teams will continue throughout this school year. 

Middle School Design Team

At their January meeting, team members provided feedback on the first year of implementation of the gifted education cluster model at the four middle schools.  The team previewed the elective course descriptions for the 2016-17 school year and identified next steps in the writing team process for teachers.  Lastly, feedback from the Ramp Up to Readiness coordinators was shared as part of the process for evaluating the implementation of the middle school daily advisory curriculum.

Future team meetings will continue to focus on differentiation, the cluster model, and implementation of the daily advisory curriculum.

High School Programming Project Team

The January meeting of the high school programming team focused on review of the high school programming timeline, discussion of elective course offerings for the registration handbooks, and continued discussion about credit recovery options for 9th grade students.

At the February meeting, team members completed a formative evaluation of the 2016-17 student registration process.  The team also heard a summary of best practices in supporting the transition for incoming ninth grade students.  Lastly, the team finalized plans for ninth grade recovery options for the 2016-17 school year.

Out-of-School Time Project Team

The Out-of-School Time team’s major accomplishments since December include continued work on the logic model to expand programming and planning for the launch of summer 2016 programming.  Team members are starting to meet with sites to look at 2016 needs, wants, and ideas for programming.  Challenges in this work include managing program growth, securing financial commitments, and public awareness.  The team is also discussing how to engage perspectives from different cultures and schools to determine how to increase participation in Out-of-School Time programs.

The Grade Configuration Steering Committee met on November 18, 2015 and each of the project team leaders shared a status update. The steering committee provided input on the elective course sequence for middle level students and gave input on middle school out-of-school- time programming.

The December 15, 2015 school board work session topic will be the new grade span implementation. Project team leaders will provide detailed information in three areas: high school programming, middle level design, and out-of-school time programming.

High School Facilities Construction

As of November 13, most of the punch list items on all three high school construction projects have been completed. The mechanical items remaining include on-site training for new systems and controls and functional testing of heating systems and controls. Construction meetings continue to be held weekly at each of the high schools. At all three high schools, the Health/Safety coordinator is collecting feedback from site administration and police liaison officers to establish a new plan for video surveillance throughout each building. The hand rails that were delayed because we needed to have them refabricated will be installed at all three high schools by December 4.

  • At Maple Grove Senior High, the west gymnasium is complete. The OMGBA girls basketball tournament was held in the new gym space and participants reported that it worked well. The existing scoreboard will be replaced because the current unit is obsolete and the cost falls within the budget. The accent panels for the outside of the gym extension arrived in mid-November for installation.
  • At Osseo Senior High, all punch list items will be completed by December 4th. The roadway at the back of the building has been completed and the landscaping restoration in this area will be complete by the end of November.
  • At Park Center Senior High, a few architectural items remain to be completed. The kitchen project is now complete and all punch list items have been resolved.

Middle School Design

This fall, the middle school design team has focused on exploring adjustments needed to the exploratory/elective courses for next school year and beyond. Because current 6th and 7th grade students are new to middle school, they are enrolled in the same set of exploratory (elective) courses for this year only, and a new progression of electives needs to be created for next year and beyond. This progression of electives will need to be determined prior to winter break so that the information can be communicated to students and families. The team is conducting a survey of all middle school families in time for next year’s course registration. The team is conducting a survey of all middle school families to solicit parent perspectives related to middle school offerings.

High School Programming

The high school programming team met in November. The discussion focused on expanding opportunities for students to earn college credit through technology, including on-line courses, blended courses, and distance learning with higher education partners.

Out-of-School Time 

The Out-of-School Time project team has completed a timeline and communication plan. The team leader gathered input from middle school and elementary principals and did an observation of all current ISD 279 programs. The community engagement coordinators completed a gap analysis and program evaluation. The work outlined for December includes benchmarking with other district’s Out-of-School Time programs, reviewing previous survey data on programming and determining the need for future input, and recommending areas for growth.

Human Resources 

A labor management committee met to evaluate the teacher transfer process recommended no changes to the current teacher transfer process. The process for specials positions (elementary physical education and music, special education and elementary gifted education and counselors) will be clearly defined and included in the process. This project team will be closed out this month as no further work remains.


The logistics project team completed the evaluation and close out process. The Site Logistics Contact meetings and communication were effective. It is recommended that a similar process be used for future large projects.


All technology work order tickets associated with the grade span change are now resolved. The technology project team closed out its work in November and will complete the evaluation process in December.

--Posted November 30, 2015

August 7, 2015

The grade spans in Osseo Area Schools are now as follows:

Elementary: PreK/K-5
Middle School: gr. 6-8
High School: gr. 9-12

In accordance with school board-approved priority work for the coming year, Grade Span Steering Committee members are now preparing to monitor and adjust in the following program areas: middle school, out-of-school time, and high school.

Progress on high school facilities construction (as of August 5, 2015)

  • Projected high school facilities project costs are within budget.
  • Summer construction experienced minor delays at all three high schools and one major delay at Maple Grove Senior High.
  • Most of the work will be completed by the time school starts on September 8. The Maple Grove Senior High gym extension will be completed in October.
  • Weekly construction meetings continue to take place at each high school to make adjustments and plan for project completion.

Other project team updates

  • The logistics project team met throughout the summer. Each site has a logistics contact that is helping to coordinate the cleaning schedule, summer programming, staff moves, and deliveries for their sites.
  • The middle level design team’s work will resume this fall with a focus on reviewing the middle school implementation and planning for the 2016-17 school year.
  • The middle school and high school advisory curriculum for career and college readiness and academic oversight will be “Ramp Up to Readiness.” Teams from each middle and high school have been trained in that curriculum.
  • The high school programming team’s work will begin in August as part of planning for the 2016-17 school year.
  • The human resources project team reports that all open positions will continue to be posted throughout the summer. A labor management committee will be formed this fall to evaluate the teacher transfer process that was used for this school year
  • The out-of-school time programming work is just beginning.
  • The technology project team has completed its work to prepare for new grade spans.

October 19, 2015

During the 2015-16 school year, the grade span project teams and steering committee will monitor, adjust and evaluate the updated project management plan. In particular, staff will focus on three key areas under new priority work approved by the school board for 2015-2016:

 “The new grade spans have been implemented with a plan to monitor and adjust in the following program areas:  middle school, out-of-school time, and high school.”

High School Facilities Construction Team

Projected high school facilities project costs remain within budget. All high school learning spaces were ready by the time school started, with the exception of the Maple Grove Senior High gym extension. The projected date for occupancy for the MGSH gym extension is October 31. The wrestling room and new locker room are occupied/being used.

Temporary handrails are still in use at all three high schools because the aluminum handrails that had been ordered did not meet the district’s quality specifications. The handrails were returned and new handrails were ordered from another vendor.  Installation of permanent handrails is expected by late November/early December.

The accent panels for the outside of the gym extension at MGSH have been delayed because the product was misrouted to another state. District staff is working with the vendor to confirm delivery and the installation timeline.

Punch lists are being completed and staff is continuing to work through the mechanical commissioning process. The construction portion of the project should be completed by December.

Middle School Design Team

The Middle Level Design Team will focus this year on monitoring and adjusting the implementation of the Middle School Model at all middle school sites. The team will explore adjustments that may be needed in the following areas:

  • exploratory (elective) courses for SY15-16 and beyond;
  • implementation of the gifted education cluster model; and
  • advisory.

Meetings are scheduled through May 2016 and a timeline for decision-making has been established.

The first component of middle school design work will be the selection of a new progression of electives and exploratory courses for middle school students to begin the 2016-2017 school year. This progression of electives will need to be determined prior to Winter Break, as the staffing process will inevitably begin in early January. This information will also need to be communicated to students and families, as middle school counselors begin their elementary site visits in late January/early February.

At a recent design team meeting, representatives from the Bloomington Public Schools, Anoka-Hennepin Schools and Elk River School District provided a “Panel of Experts” and answered questions from our team.  On October 26th, the Middle Level Design Team will reconvene and begin to work in school-specific groups to design options for elective progressions. 

High School Programming Project Team

The focus of this team this year will be on college and career readiness, credit accumulation and experiential learning programming. The team will also research best practices for supporting 9th grade students during their first year in high school. The basic question that the team will seek to answer is “What do we want the high school experience to be for our students?”

Out-of-School Time Project Team

This project team will begin meeting in November. The fall has been on implementing Targeted Services and 21st Century programming at North View and Brooklyn Middle, and “The SPOT” (similar to Kidstop) at Osseo Middle and Maple Grove Middle.

Human Resources Project Team

A labor management committee will evaluate the teacher transfer process and make recommendations for the upcoming staffing season. The project team will close out its work in November and will then disband.

Logistics Project Team

The logistics project team is evaluating the communication and processes used to manage the logistics of the grade span change. The team began by providing individual assessments on the deliverables outlined in the logistics timeline. Site logistics contacts will provide feedback and identify potential improvements for the future. The team will close out its work in November and will then disband.

Technology Project Team

The technology project team is evaluating its timeline and communication plan.  The team will close out its work in November and will then disband.

May 14, 2015

Planning for the move to new grade spans continues to advance on time and within budget. As the school year winds down, the focus is now on logistics to help ensure smooth movement of staff and materials/equipment over the summer.

The Logistics Team is working with designated contacts at each school to ensure that employee questions are answered and that employees are well informed about the packing and moving of curriculum and staff. Upcoming work will involve implementing the plan for moving curriculum, staff materials and equipment.

Two Middle Level Design Team task forces have been working to identify any changes needed to middle level report cards and middle level conferences. The full Middle Level Design Team will resume meeting next fall, with a focus on reviewing middle school implementation and planning for 2016-2017.

The High School Programming Team will resume meeting in August 2015, with a focus on developing a vision for high school programming that includes implementation of the World’s Best Workforce goals.

Facilities construction is on time and within budget at all three high schools.

From the Human Resources Team: the Education Support Professional transfer process began April 29 and communication was sent to all teachers in early May regarding the second round of voluntary transfer.

The Technology Team is completing the work of adding, changing and deleting courses for next year and preparing for the annual promotion of students to the next grade level.

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