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TOWER — Bentley Joe Lewis Koski had two bottom teeth and four upper teeth. The 11-month-old baby would “take your knuckle and put it in his mouth and bite down. You’d go ‘ouch,’ and he’d laugh and do it again,” said the boy’s grandmother, Pam Swanson, smiling at the memory.
It can be a chore to get kids excited about math — the school subject with a reputation for being hard to love and even harder to do — but a group of Duluth-area teachers spent time this month learning ways to do just that. The College of St. Scholastica held a weeklong workshop for area elementary and middle school teachers in an effort to help them strengthen math instruction skills, find ways to use technology in their classrooms and get the attention of students.
Jamila Johnson has walked the winding, uphill road to Lincoln Park Middle School several times, and it's not easy, she said. "For the kids who are running late and miss the school bus, that's a big walk up the hill," said the mother of two enrolled at the school. "Think about the elderly; some of them have guardianship. They can't walk up that hill." So Johnson is pleased with the news that the Duluth Transit Authority will begin service to the school Aug. 27 with a test route.
Last July's devastating windstorm changed Zoey Leege's life — in what is likely a rare case — for the better. Leege, who lives in Duluth's Lakeside neighborhood with her husband and two daughters, was asleep in her bungalow's attic bedroom the night of the storm that downed thousands of trees in Duluth and the surrounding area. She and her husband, who was her fiance at the time, awoke to the sound of the wind. It was followed by a large pine from their yard crashing into their roof.
A painstakingly restored Superior Street restaurant is on the market as a leasing opportunity. The Blind Pig, 132 E. Superior St., is being advertised as a "turn-key" restaurant. Realtor Greg Follmer said both the first-floor restaurant and upstairs event space in the historic building are part of the nearly 12,000-square-foot package. The basement Rathskeller bar is not.
Duluth Business University announced Wednesday that it plans to close next June, citing a drop in enrollment at the 126-year-old school amid uncertainty about its future accreditation. The U.S. Department of Education last September said it was terminating recognition of the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools, banning it from the federal financial aid program; a school must be accredited by a recognized agency for its students to be eligible for federal financial aid.
Loren Martell will make his fourth consecutive bid for a Duluth School Board seat. The outspoken critic of the Duluth school district filed for an At Large seat at the end of the filing period Tuesday, bringing the number of At Large candidates to five and forcing a Sept. 12 primary. Martell ran for a District 3 seat in 2015, and also ran for seats in 2013 and 2011, all unsuccessfully.
Ten-year-old Shamir excitedly described all of his favorite activities at Willow River's Camp Heartland. Swimming is a big one, said the Queens, N.Y., resident, but basketball is tops. "There is a basketball court where there is a hoop just right I can dunk on," he said. In his third summer at the camp, Shamir began attending "because my grandma wanted me to be more active."
Money that the Duluth school district receives from the state to pay the salaries of staff who work with the most at-risk kids is no longer in jeopardy. The Minnesota Department of Education told the district Thursday that it does in fact qualify for achievement and integration program money, of which last school year it received $1.6 million. The money is meant to aid in racial integration and help reduce achievement gaps, and the district submits a plan every couple of years to be approved by the state in order to receive the money.
The University of Minnesota Duluth couldn't ask for better exposure: the new chairman of the University of Minnesota Board of Regents not only lives in Duluth, he lives across the street from UMD. David McMillan, executive vice president of Minnesota Power and a graduate of UMD, takes over as chairman of the board effective Saturday. UMD Chancellor Lendley Black said he's happy for UMD and for McMillan, who has "proven himself as a top-notch regent over the last few years."