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Doug Froke: DL district gets positive review from MDE

One of the requirements of a school district as it embarks on a major facilities project is that the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) must provide an opinion on the educational and economic viability of district’s plan. Such is the case with the plan being put before the voters of the Detroit Lakes School District on Nov. 5. The MDE has provided the Detroit Lakes School District with its opinion of the project that includes the construction of a 1,000 seat, K-3 Elementary building along with many other capital improvement projects. This study conducted by the MDE is referred to as the “review and comment” process whereby the Department researches the proposed project and renders an opinion on the wishes of the school district.

Consequently, Dr. Brenda Cassellius, Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Education has provided the Detroit Lakes School District with a positive review and comment for the project being put before the voters of the district. What this means is that after a thorough “review” of the District’s proposal, the MDE supports the intentions of the school district where this project is concerned. The MDE evaluates the project in its totality evaluating things like the rationale behind the project list, the enrollment forecast for the district, the financial strength of the district, the impact of the project on the school district’s annual operating budget and the relationship the school district maintains with the other local governments. This is only a partial list of the study the MDE conducts on the district’s building proposal but as you can see, the study of the district’s building proposal is quite extensive.

It is important for the residents of the Detroit Lakes School District to know that the body that regulates Minnesota School Districts across the state (MDE) has studied the very same proposal that will be to the voters on November 5th. If you have any questions on this part of the process, please feel free to contact me.