Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted Schools
By Brad Sellner, Superintendent
Independent School District 2687, serving the communities of Winsted, Waverly, and Howard Lake, is dedicated to providing the best possible education for its youth. With that commitment, we strive for quality and opportunity for each student in every offering and activity of the school.
The school district comprises an area of about 115 square miles, primarily in Wright County, with a portion located in McLeod County, and a small portion in Carver County. District 2687’s ninth through 12th grade high school is located between Howard Lake and Winsted on Wright County Road 6, and its fifth through eighth grade middle school is located in Howard Lake. The kindergarten through fourth grade elementary and preschool facilities are located in Waverly and Winsted. School Age Care (SAC) is offered in the elementary buildings as of fall 2012.
In 2012, Humphrey Elementary received the National Blue Ribbon Award, and Winsted Elementary was recognized as a 2013 Blue Ribbon nominee by the State of Minnesota.
Some of the highlights of our district:
• Extended-Day Kindergarten for all students offers traditional curriculum enhanced with activity/exploratory stations, physical education, library, art, and recess.
• Small class sizes and an environment that fosters good teacher-student relationships and allows for individualized attention to students. Due to small class sizes, there is an opportunity for all students to participate in activities, too. This allows children to mix with other community members, connecting with long-lasting friendships. Teachers and staff are kind and caring so students feel protected and safe as they learn. Safe and convenient bus transportation is provided.
• Strong focus on academics at all grade levels, proven by student scores on state tests that are consistently at or above state average; ACT scores are consistently at or above national and state averages; graduates qualify for colleges of their choice. Elementary and middle school systems help prepare students for high school and beyond.
• Excellent music program, including annual elementary musicals. Middle and high school students can continue in music, through band, choir, jazz and pep band, marching band, and individual band lessons. Top honors won by large groups, ensembles, and soloists.
• A strong Early Childhood Family Education (ECFE) program, offering school-year and summer activities that are fun and educational, and services such as early childhood screening, parent and child activities, parenting information, and new baby welcome packets.
• Preschool for 3- to 5-year-olds located at Humphrey Elementary in Waverly and at Winsted Elementary; educational, nurturing, and fun. Curriculum with a focused approach on learning, and a strong emphasis on literacy skills. Transportation provided; limited scholarships available.
• School Age Care (SAC) available for students grades in kindergarten through grade six before and after school and non-school days, located at both elementary schools, sponsored by community ed, provides homework assistance, fun activities, and is convenient for busy families.
• Community education activities, education, recreation and special events for birth through age 5, youth kindergarten through grade 12, and adults.
• Adult volunteer program parents and community members volunteer in the classroom, help with school activities, and work on projects in their homes.
• Strong middle school, grades five through eight, that provides a supportive, transitional environment in which students can achieve their full potential through a variety of exploratory opportunities. An enriching advisory program is also offered to meet student’s needs. Two computer labs and Smartboard technology used in many classrooms.
• Strong foundation of high school courses in math, science, social studies, language arts, physical education, technology, and healthy living, complemented by a wide array of electives such as EMT-First Responder, where students can earn First Responder Certification; CSI: Classroom (forensic science); animal science; floriculture; desktop publishing; pottery; Spanish; music choir and band; and many more.
• Advanced Placement (AP) courses and College-In-the-School agriculture classes are available in the high school, as well as technical college credit courses which are available through our partnership with Wright Tech Center.
• Involved, caring parents and community school events well-attended by parents, grandparents, and friends; parent advisory committees, traveling sports teams, field trips, Laker Pride, District Curriculum Advisory Committee, etc. many opportunities for parents and community members to be involved and to support students.
• Special activities to expand student interests and experiences, such as student councils, after-school activities, English learners, special programs to assist and encourage healthy students, sixth grade Deep Portage outdoor experience, fourth grade fishing expo, and many others.
• High school offers a nationally-recognized FFA program that includes consistent state and national award winners. HLWW FFA was named the premier chapter of Minnesota in 2007 and 2011. A greenhouse was constructed for the FFA in 2010, and it also received a farm-to-school grant used for its school garden.
• An Alternative Learning Program (ALP) was formed for students in grades nine through 12 to help them reach graduation standards and achieve credits using an online curriculum.
• Boys and girls sports teams that encourage participation and achieve success. Middle school sports that focus on fundamentals and skill-building; high school athletics include baseball, basketball, wrestling, golf, track and field, volleyball, gymnastics, football, cross country, and softball. There is an opportunity for all students to participate.
• High school extracurricular activities that meet a wide range of interests, including Knowledge Bowl; student council; National Honor Society; drama; Yearbook Committee; Letter Club, etc. An outstanding drama department with an annual musical production, and frequent state honor-winners in one-act competition, including highest honors.
• Generous, supportive community that has awarded more than $31,000 (2011-12) in local scholarships to graduating HLWW seniors each year.
• Our schools have financial strength to further improve the learning environment. New and remodeled facilities greeted families beginning in spring 2008 as we moved into a new ninth through 12th grade high school and remodeled elementary schools. In fall 2009, through much community support, the local levy was renewed for a period of 10 years.
We have the programs, staff, and opportunities that children need for education, development, and growth. The wisdom of our experienced staff and the enthusiasm of our new staff create a learning environment for student success. Many of our staff members are returning to earn their masters degree. We’re proud of our school district and how we make the grade for the families of this community every day. Please contact us at (320) 543-3900 with any questions, or for more information check our website at www.hlww.k12.mn.us.