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IN THE SCHOOLS: N.D. shifts vaccination dates for middle-schoolers

The North Dakota Department of Health has announced a change in immunization requirements for seventh grade students next fall.

Until now, “middle school” students were to have their Tdap and MCV4 vaccine before school starts, but that term means different grades in different communities. The Health Department said it decided to change to seventh grade to standardize immunization requirements and make it easier for parents to remember.

Tdap protects against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis. MCV4 protects against meningococcal meningitis. All are potentially deadly diseases, the Health Department said.

Middle school immunization rates for the current school year are 72 percent for Tdap and 70 percent for MCV4.

For a complete list of immunization requirements and recommendations, go to

  • Sacred Heart School in East Grand Forks has named David Andrys as its first principal for preschool through 12th grade. He has been with the school since 1979, serving as principal for elementary- and middle-school grades. School officials credit him with helping to start a daycare and a preschool program, and holding all-day kindergarten. Andrys is a graduate of Sacred Heart, which now has more than 300 students.
  • The North Dakota String Teachers Association has named Rebecca McFarlane, an orchestra teacher at Century Elementary and South Middle Schools in Grand Forks, its 2014 Educator of the Year.
  • The East Grand Forks Education Foundation recently awarded $5,332 in grants to 10 teachers for spring 2014. Jan Baune, Central Middle School, received $875 for a new sewing machine; Michelle Larson, Senior High School, received $800 for a library make-over; Beth Vetter and Jake Wesoloski, Central, received $400 for a speaker sponsorship for Marion Blumenthal Lazan; Amy McDonald, New Heights Elementary, received $573 for seat sacks and books; Katie Nelson, New Heights, received $1,000 for books; Cory Chupka, Central, received $600 for weight-training equipment; and DyAnn Stordahl, Trista Schrage and Kelly Clifton, East Grand Forks Preschool, received $884 for learning tools.
  • Keep North Dakota Clean has announced the winners of its Poster and Digital Media Contests. First place winners include Liberty Ethan-Hook, Cooperstown; Elton Greywater, Fort Totten; and Emilee Ohman, Grand Forks. They received $100 cash prizes and will have their poster turned into a billboard and placed near their hometown. Second place winners include Skye Herman, Devils Lake, and Taylyn Thompson, Mayville, who receive $75 cash prizes.
  • New Heights Elementary School in East Grand Forks holding kindergarten registration for the 2014-2015 school year 5 to 6 p.m. April 8 and 10. Call (218) 773-0908 before coming. Also, bring copies your child’s birth certificate and immunization records.
  • U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement recently announced the creation of Project iGuardian to combat sexual predators who prey on children online. The new program provides children and parents with hands-on tips from ICE agents to avoid becoming a victim of sexual predators. Organizations and schools interested in requesting a Project iGuardian presentation can do so

More info: Share K-12 education news at; include “K-12 notebook” in the subject heading. To see more K-12 education news, visit the websites of Grand Forks Public Schools and East Grand Forks Public Schools. Herald Staff Writer Dani Meyer contributed to this column.

Jennifer Johnson

Jennifer Johnson is the K-12 education reporter for The Grand Forks Herald.  Contact her if you have any story ideas or tips and visit 

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