A new chapter for the Proctor School District

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The Proctor School District has its eyes on turning the page into a new chapter as a new school year is right around the corner with a new superintendent, new teachers, and a new mindset.

“It is an opportunity that not very many people get. As educators, we get that chance to be with others and to build and maybe sometimes rebuild and repair community. That’s what I’m all about; I just want to make sure that we have that opportunity to affect our kids the most positively by building back community,” said Superintendent Kerry Juntunen.

A new mindset has the district welcoming its staff, city leaders, and the community to a welcome-back picnic on Wednesday, August 31, 2022. The 2022-2023 school year starts on Tuesday, September 6th.

The school district has been through a lot in the past year, but superintendent Juntunen mentions that everyone is looking for a fresh start.

“I think the most important part is resilience. We have an incredibly resilient staff, a resilient community, and people that want to make sure that they’re doing what they have to do for kids because that’s what we’re all about. When we talk about what we have to do, we have to do what we’ve always done except in a double dose, building on and supporting the community. That’s who we are; that’s who we will be.”

Some familiar teachers are returning and are excited about the New Year, like Pike Elementary Shelly Larson.

“My favorite part is just teaching kindergarten and just seeing the excitement and just the joy of learning and just the excitement. That is the best part of my job. Seeing the joy and just sparking that love of learning that I hope lasts their lifetime. I just look forward to meeting the new students and helping to give them that great start in education.”

And some new faces will be walking the hallways, like former St. Paul school system teacher Jacob Franz.

“It’s been a good experience. Everybody has been very, very welcoming and very supportive. You know, it’s like when you’ve had jobs where people say, if you need anything, you let me know. It’s mostly been a formality here. It’s completely different when one of my coworkers says, If you need anything, please let me know. I can tell that they are being very genuine, which again makes me very thankful to be here in Proctor.”

Superintendent Juntuen also shared with WDIO that he is looking forward to being part of everything in classrooms, at games, attending board meetings, community picnics, and so much more.