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ALC/Gymnastics facility name proposal emerge

WORTHINGTON — The Independent School District 518 Area Learning Center/Gymnastics facility currently under construction on Crailsheim Drive is close to having a permanent name.

District 518 Superintendent John Landgaard distributed an updated list of approximately 20 possible naming suggestions during Monday’s board of education instructional committee meeting. The suggestions were narrowed down by board members from an initial extensive listing produced by student, staff and community suggestions.

The district’s administrative team recommended the new $13.1 million facility adopt the name “Worthington Learning Center.”

“That was one of two that really jumped out to me and made sense,” said board of education vice-chair Scott Rosenberg, agreeing with the recommendation.

Board treasurer Brad Shaffer also agreed with the administration’s recommendation, but advocated the item be added to next Tuesday’s regular board agenda without a committee recommendation for full board discussion.

The instructional committee also addressed staffing increase requests and the district’s struggle to fill open positions.

“We have a variety of positions that are getting no applicants,” said Worthington High School Principal Josh Noble.

The district is specifically looking to increase personnel in its special education and WHS health/physical education teacher departments and fill a variety of vacant positions.

In other instructional and operations committees meeting business, committee members:

  • Heard an update on the 3.1 acres of district-owned property on Crailsheim Drive the board agreed to go through the processes necessary to potentially sell. Landgaard said the Planning and Zoning board approved the district’s request. The board of education, he said, could declare the property as surplus and accept bids on the property.
  • Heard an update on the Wide Area Network currently under construction that will connect the districts’ sites by an underground fiber line, eliminating the district’s reliability on wireless internet connectivity. Progress continues, and the district should be connected and switch over by July 1. Completion of the fiber line is not expected until summer 2019.
  • Discussed how the district could potentially financially collaborate with the city to enhance and maintain shared facilities (particularly athletic fields). Board member Linden Olson also questioned whether or not the district want to consider renting some of its facilities when unused by the district for community use.