Baraboo School News

Boys Cross Country Conference Champs!

Congratulations to the Boys Cross Country team for capturing the 2014 Conference Championship! With five of the top 11 finishers in the meet wearing the T-Bird blue and gold, Baraboo was able to pull ahead of Deforest by one point despite the Norskies crossing the finish line in first and second place. This conference title is the 32nd in school history, and the fourth title in the past five years. Six runners claimed all-conference honors for the Thunderbirds by finishing in the top 16 of the race: Joey Rausch (3rd place, 16 minutes, 39 seconds), Matt Brooks (6th place, 17:18), Ben Bildsten (8th place, 17:21), Jackson Snow (9th place, 17:27), Austin Castleberry (11th place, 17:35), and Zach Solles (14th place, 17:48).

Photo by Debbie Carley Gerencser


Indoor Pool Swimming Lessons

Registration is now open for Baraboo School District swimming lessons at the Indoor Pool at Jack Young Middle School. Lessons are on Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday from November 30-December 16. Fees are $40 for residents of the Baraboo School District and $65 for non-residents. Space is limited, as a small ratio of five swimmers to one instructor is followed.

Sessions available are:

4-4:30pm Pre-School Session I

4-4:30pm Level III

4:30-5pm Pre-School Session II

4:30-5pm Level II

5-5:30pm Pre-School Session III

5-5:30pm Level III

Pre-School sessions are geared toward kids age 3-4. Leveled classes are for kids age 5 and older. Level II classes include skills such as front/back floats, treading water, and front stroke for five body lengths. Level III classes include skills such as front/back crawl swimming, treading water, elementary back stroke, and diving.

Registrations must be done in person at the Indoor Pool. If you have any questions please contact Aquatics Director Heather Wood-Wegner at 355-4665 or


Al Behrman Elementary Accepts Award

State Superintendent Tony Evers offered congratulations to Al Behrman Elementary School for being among 173 schools in the state that received Wisconsin Title I School of Recognition honors for the 2014-15 school year. “These schools are examples of the success we need in all of our schools to close the achievement gap,” Evers said.

The schools were recognized during a special Oct. 13 ceremony at the State Capitol in Madison hosted by Deputy State Superintendent Mike Thompson. Pictured with Thompson, from left: John Blosenski, ABE Principal, and Sue Paulson, ABE Reading Specialist. During the program, special recognition went to seven High-Achieving schools and 29 High-Progress Schools. Eight schools earned both High-Achieving and High-Progress honors. Three schools earned the award for a 10th consecutive year, while 10 schools earned the award for a fifth consecutive year. ABE was accepting the award for the third consecutive year.

Congratulations ABE students and staff!


#BarabooProud Camelbak Bottles Now Available!

The Baraboo School District is selling Camelbak Eddy .75L water bottles as another way to show you're #BarabooProud! Bottles are navy/translucent with a gray top and white printing. They will feature the Thunderbird logo and our signature #BarabooProud hashtag.

Orders will be taken until November 19th in order for the product to arrive prior to the holidays (so this would make a perfect gift for the Thunderbird fans on your shopping list!). Bottles cost $18 each.  You can choose to either pay now using PayPal, or pay when you pickup the bottles.


Please contact if you have any questions. Thank you for supporting the Baraboo School District!


Community Helpers Visit East Kindergarten

Mr. Lutz's Kindergarten class at East Elementary School had a few community helpers come into the classroom to answer questions about their jobs. John is a state trooper who answered questions and let the kids sit in his patrol car, Dr. Birrenkott is a dentist who answered our questions about teeth, and Mr. Rogers is a bee keeper who had each of the kids express honey and get a taste!


Sauk County Sheriff Visits NF Elementary

Sauk County Sheriff Deputy Eric Van Den Heuvel visited Mrs. Krigbaum’s kindergarteners on Monday, October 13th. He spoke with the students about his job and described the many ways he helps people. The children asked him questions about his job and the types of equipment he uses at work. They viewed the squad car, looked in the back seat and even got to see what the lights and siren were like! The students received his official sheriff’s trading card. Deputy Van Den Heuvel will be back two more times this year to visit.


Classroom Connections at NF Elementary

As part of the Baraboo School District’s Strategic Plan, the Baraboo Community Classroom Connection (BCCC) was established to expand community engagement in schools and enhance the children’s learning within the classroom setting and also inspire possible career options.

At North Freedom Elementary School, Mrs. Shafer’s 5th graders had their first visit from their Community Connection, Raina Roeloff from the public library. She talked to them about banned/challenged books and many students were surprised to find some of their favorite books on the list. The students look forward to more visits from Raina!


East 5th Graders Enjoy Computer Lab Time

Miss Beckord's fifth graders at East Elementary enjoyed computer lab time this week. The fifth graders have been working diligently on their personal narratives, and many students have begun to publish their pieces!


Wildlife Ecology Students Study Baraboo River

Wildlife Ecology students at the High School spent Friday and Monday doing a lab at the Baraboo River in lower Ochsner Park. The students took measurements of the river's velocity, temperature, width, and depth, and surveyed the invertebrates found!


NF Fun Run Raises Money, Food Items

North Freedom Elementary students raised over $600 for the Mid Continent Railway Museum and l290 pounds of non-perishable items for the Baraboo Food Pantry at their 4th Annual Fun Run on October 10th! Click through the photos to see more action from the event!


East Artists Create Color Collection Boards

From Mrs. Schoville's Art Class at East Elementary:

"Fifth grade started by watercolor experiments and resist materials. We used those paintings and made color collection boards with sticky tape to see what colors we could find outside. Walking around the school, artists collected items of color and added them to their boards. We will be looking at the work of Naturalist Andy Goldsworthy to make outdoor installations next week!"


5th Grade Lunch Bunch at ABE

Natalie, Jaelynn, Mrs. Bilzing, Kaylee and Natalie having fun during 5th Grade Girls Conflict Resolution Lunch Bunch Group at ABE. During lunch bunch, students explore, collaborate and practice how to handle conflict in ways that are responsible, respectful and safe. Way to go girls!


4K Students Earning BELC Bees

A note from Ms. Angi, 4k teacher at St. Clare and East School:

"BELC 4K Tommy Bartlett St. Clare students are being Respectful, Responsible and Resource in the classroom. They have received 50 BELC Bees for being Respectful, Responsible and Resourceful. We celebrated by bringing our stuffed animals to school to learn with us! We wrote our names, read books, and played games with our stuffed animals for the day. The students learned a lot about each other when we had a turn to tell about their stuffed animals!"

Way to go BELC students! Learn more about BELC Bees here.


Fire Safety for Elementary Schools

It's Fire Prevention and Safety time for our elementary schools! Students are learning how to stay safe from fires, meeting real firefighters, visiting the Baraboo Fire Department, and getting to climb in fire trucks! Thank you Baraboo and North Freedom Fire Departments for helping our kids learn about fire safety!

Click on the photo to see more!


7th Grade Class Collects Food, Money for Food Pantry

Ms. Walker's 7th Grade Tiered Intervention class collected donations for the Baraboo Food Pantry in September, and collected a total of $46 and 341 pounds of food! Thanks JYMS students!


Fall Into a Good Book!

The students at Al Behrman Elementary School and East Elementary School are getting into the fall season! They are checking out, reading, and returning their library books. When a class reaches the set goal, a leaf falls off the tree. Students are anxiously watching the leaves fall!


Visits to West Kindergarten Classes

Last month, Ms. Baird's kindergarten class at West Kindergarten Center received visits from Park Ranger Jim Carter of Devil's Lake State Park and Carey Kipp from the Baraboo Public Library. Mr. Carter showed the kids various furs of animals around the area, and Ms. Kipp read several books to the kids. Thanks for visiting!


Elk Club Donates Dictionaries

The Elks Club of Baraboo donated dictionaries to all of the third grade students in Baraboo. Gary and Ruth Baker of the Elks Club delivered these books to Mrs. Van Den Heuvel’s classroom at North Freedom Elementary on Monday, September 22nd. Thanks Elks Club!


PBIS Rewards at North Freedom Elementary

For their very first PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) classroom reward of 2014-15, the third graders at North Freedom Elementary School decided they would like some time to explore the Chromebooks.  Students were excited to have some choice time in return for their hard work at starting the school year off right with "Cool Tools"!


East 5th Graders Learn About School Counselors, Geography

Students in Ms. Beckord's fifth grade class at East Elementary recently enjoyed their first guidance class with Mrs. Kowalke. Students learned about the school counselor's role in addition to their own personal role in school.

Students also spent time using social studies geography books to sharpen skills on their knowledge of the Midwest Region.

Click on the photo to see more images from Ms. Beckord's classroom!


School Report Cards Released, Baraboo "Exceeds Expectations" Two Years in a Row

The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) has released their 2013-14 District and School Report Cards, and for the second year in a row the Baraboo School District has earned a score of "Exceeds Expectations"! The 13-14 school year was only the second year district report cards were produced.

These Report Cards provide data on multiple indicators for four Priority Areas:

  • Student Achievement – performance on the WKCE and WAA-SwD in reading and mathematics
  • Student Growth – improvement over time on the WKCE in reading and mathematics
  • Closing Gaps – progress of student subgroups in closing gaps in reading and mathematics performance and/or graduation rates
  • On-track and Postsecondary Readiness – performance on key indicators of readiness for graduation and postsecondary pursuits, whether college or career

Baraboo School District's overall score was 74.0. Al Behrman Elementary received the highest individual score in the district with 80.4.

Each school report card. along with the district report card, is saved on the Curriculum and Instruction webpage here.

Congratulations Baraboo School District students, staff and community!


Baraboo Teachers Honored as Unsung Heroes

Voya Financial, Inc., a provider of retirement plans for educators, recently awarded Baraboo High School teachers Jacalyn Amant, Lawrence Gillick, Erin Verhagen, Maggie Schumacher, Alyse Karls, William Schliewe, Marlys Greenhalgh, Gary Frisch and Emily Arendsee a $2,000 grant as part of the company’s 2014 Unsung Heroes awards competition.

Through the program, Voya Financial awards grants to K-12 educators nationwide to honor innovative teaching methods, creative educational projects, and the ability to positively influence the children they teach.

Selected from a group of more than 1,000 applicants, the team is one of 100 winners across the country who will receive this award to help fund and bring to life their idea, Write Now! In addition, they will now compete with other winners for one of the top three prizes, an additional $5,000, $10,000 or $25,000 from Voya Financial.

Read the full press release here. Congratulations teachers!


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