Lyons-Decatur Northeast and Oakland-Craig Late Starts

Lyons-Decatur Northeast Schools will start school at 10:00 a.m. tomorrow due to the weather.

Oakland-Craig Schools will begin classes two hours late tomorrow due to the weather.

Delays and Postponements

Oakland-Craig School has a two hour late start due to the weather.

Lyons-Decatur Northeast will begin classes at 10:00 a.m. due to the weather. There is no morning preschool.

The events scheduled at the Golden Oaks Senior Center in Oakland NE have been postponed until Feb. 2nd.

Oakland-Craig School Late Start

Oakland-Craig Schools will start two hours late today due to weather.

Social Speaks: Thoughts on Local Schools Consolidating

As editor, I wanted to hear what people have to say about local schools, such as Tekamah-Herman, Oakland-Craig, Lyons-Decatur Northeast and Bancroft-Rosalie, possibly consolidating. Below are several very interesting, informed and insightful responses.

Leann Canarsky Jorgensen If we have to consolidate, I wish they had done it with Lyons when the option was there! Not real crazy about my kids having to travel out of town.
 Leann Canarsky Jorgensen Not sure how the people of Decatur would have felt about coming to Oakland, Tekamah would be closer.
Amy Wheaton Why if oakland and lyons went together would the school be in oakland?

Leann Canarsky Jorgensen I always thought it would be ideal to have one half way between on hwy 77.

Amy Wheaton I’m so glad my kids are out of school…small towns are disappearing…and so are the schools. Sad to say!

Leann Canarsky Jorgensen I wasn’t meaning that it would be in Oakland, I was meaning that it would be further for Decatur if they merged & went half way??? Wouldn’t it be ideal to meet half way than to choose towns? Would you expect it to be in Lyons?

Leann Canarsky Jorgensen I’m hoping my kids are out of school before anything like this happens, but we still have 9 years left in school! I hate to see any small town school close….we love our school & the convenience of it being a few blocks from home!

Amy Wheaton No not at all! I thought that’s what you meant since you stated you didn’t want your kids to have to travel!
Leann Canarsky Jorgensen I would be much more comfortable going 3 1/2 miles on hwy 77 than I would going 7 miles on 32 if we had to consolidate with T-H. That highway just stinks in the winter! Or even worse, out into the country!

Cara Schulzkump Raabe I’m so glad that my daughter graduates this year. But I still worry about all the kids. In a perfect world, right?

Leann Canarsky Jorgensen In a perfect world, every one will be happy!! Sadly, that will never happen! We need to keep the best interests of our kids & their education in mind & stop worrying about sports! 

Krisa Brown The towns of Decatur, Craig, and soon to be closed Herman have already lost their schools. So those families along with all the country people have been driving or riding the bus for decades. I understand that no town wants to lose their school house, but things change whether we want them to or not. I think people need to look at community on a larger scale than just their own town. The local small town rivalries are gone. No one has to agree, this is just my opinion.

Leann Canarsky Jorgensen I just don’t agree with putting more kids on the road…..

Krisa Brown Logan View has been doing it for years.

Leann Canarsky Jorgensen I realize that, & I see what your point is, I just think if they consolidate with T-H, I would probably choose to put my kids in The L-D school instead…..just my choice. Hwy 32 is a terrible road. When we lived in Uehling, we drove our kids to school in Oakland, instead of Logan View & when we lived out by Craig, we chose O-C over T-H ( yes, whoever owned that house chose the T-H school district for less taxes when they were given the choice). I guess any way you look at it, no one will be happy, but I as a parent, have the option to open enroll. I am not opposed to my kids traveling a short distance, but I also need to consider their safety.

Sarah Gramke Completely against. We are a strong school, and doing well financially. There is no “need” for consolidation. There is a need for more classes to be added, but with technology, distance learning with community schools would solve that. If we consolidate we will be a small B school, and not that winning is everything but we will not compete with other big schools, will not get playing time, and will have to try out for everything. Also hwy 32 would be a horrible road to commute on for our kids. I could go on and on with other reasons why its not a good idea. If you look at all of the facts, the negatives of consolidation definitely outnumber the positives. Hope the community members who are against consolidation continue to attend meetings and speak up for what is best for our kids, and our community as a whole.
Leann Canarsky Jorgensen Amen!!!! I cannot imagine my kids traveling on hwy 32 or out in the country to Bertha!! No thanks!! I love our school!!

Kris M Feauto Wow I think that would be a really bad idea.

Teresa Tobin I know I’m not from O-C but just a question to think about. Financially you may be doing great now- what about 10-20 years from now is O-C growing? Are young couples staying in town and raising their kids? I know I’ve seen small town schools here in MO. That did not consolidate and were forced too 5-10 years later cause they didn’t have enough kids! Just a thought!

Sarah Gramke Oakland-Craig is growing. Young people are staying or returning.

Cherry Hanak Why don’t they just build a new high school building , and tear down that old ugly one.

Kristi Bacon How many of u r paying land taxes in the Oakland school district. We have two farms in this district. We can not afford to pay anymore. We r at almost a 100 dollar an acre. OC needs to forget about building n look at other options

Jasmine Haeffner Helzer What should have been done is a school at Bertha. I could care less about sports as that is not what is going to pay the bills when these kids get older. Education is first and foremost. The outlook for rural communities are to hopefully sustain and the likely hood of growth is small. When looking at the numbers there is no tax benefit for a Tekamah-Oakland consolidation all we can hope for is better education.

David Mallette I always thought a merger with LV when the opportunity was there. Good highway to travel…already a new building in existance….I don’t feel a new building for the town and tax payers is the way to go. Oakland will always be my home town, but 10 years from now who knows what young families will be in town to support a new building.

David Mallette When it comes to sports…the BEST athletes make the teams…yes you have to try out and either make a team or your don’t.

Cherry Hanak I don’t even live there , just saying , how many years can people talk about this , nothing ever happens, just saying, again
Susan Reynolds-Seery Living 5 miles out of town is bad enough. My kids ride the bus, so no I don’t drive them, but just recently they got stuck in the snow and was almost 45 minutes late to school. I couldn’t imagine them having to travel farther. I hope they graduate before this goes down or we might be going to West Point and I don’t want to take my kids from their friends, but their safety is more important.

Leann Canarsky Jorgensen I agree Susan!! I’m hoping this will be years down the road & my kids are out of school too! If everyone would stop complaining about this school or that school & worry about their education, it would be a small miracle! No one wants their kids to travel, but if they have to, wouldn’t the shorter, safer route be best? 
Susan Reynolds-Seery Yes definitely! It’s not the first time they have gotten stuck either. I worry about them every time they go out. We have a great bus driver and I trust him, it’s the weather and roads I don’t trust. I hope in the end it works best for the kids.

Abby Simonsen As a young child I rode the bus from 7 am till right up till school time every morning. Back in the day when we had snow on the ground from Halloween till the end of March. I have so many fun memories of this free time with other kids. Weather you travel two miles or ten, getting the education required to succeed in this wildly changing world is what is important. Sports teaches discipline to fight and succeed when you are out in the big bad world. Consolidation only makes sense if the dollars it takes to run an education establishment are being spent efficiently.

Oakland-Craig Late Start Tomorrow

Late Start-2 Hours Monday – Buses will run accordingly NO morning Pre-school

Kats’ Korner: Is Consolidation What’s Best for the Students?

There are certain aspects of a small town a person can identify with, whether it is the culture, a historical location, certain events held throughout the year or simply how well the community is maintained.

Most small towns, such as Oakland, Lyons and Tekamah, share a common structure that educates our children, a school.

For quite some time now, local school boards have been faced with the daunting task of whether to consolidate or build a new school.

Personally, I don’t envy those trying to do what is in the best interests of the districts they serve. I do, however, admire them for the many extra hours they have devoted to this issue.

State aid seems to be at the root of the problem, or lack thereof. There has been a significant decrease for all three school districts in Burt County since 2014/15. Tekamah-Herman received $13,219.79 less than last year, Oakland-Craig took a large loss of $67,721.01 and Lyons-Decatur Northeast also took a huge loss of $53,106.59.

The decrease in state aid undoubtedly hurts a school, which has a trickle down effect, hurting teachers and students.

In my opinion, every child deserves the best education possible. If this means consolidating with another school so this can be accomplished, so be it.

I will go on record and say that I don’t want this to happen. I don’t want any community to lose their high school. If this happens, I hope each community can keep their elementary schools. At this point, only consolidating high schools is being considered.

There will be many more discussions on this matter in the future. The outcome may be decided by voting yes or no on next November’s ballot.

Please stay informed on the issue. School board meetings are always open to the public.

Remember, a child’s future is at stake.


Kats’ Korner: Music in Our Schools Month

March is Music in Our Schools Month. Some of the best memories I have from my school days are participating in band and choir. I favored band, but only because I have never been able to carry a tune.

Of all of the subjects I took in school, band was by far my favorite. It is a subject just like math, history, English, etc. It requires learning. I played the clarinet from the fifth grade until I graduated from high school. My first band instructor was Joe Chapman when I attended school in Tekamah-Herman. He was one of the best instructors ever. I say that because I had another amazing band instructor when I came to Oakland-Craig, Bryan Johnson.

I learned a great deal from both of these men. The memories I have of participating in band are some of the best memories I have from high school. There were times I wanted to quit. I remember when we moved to Oakland when I was starting my sophomore year of school. I walked into the band room and there were maybe 25-30 students in the band. I couldn’t believe my eyes. When I was in band in Tekamah, there were 90 or more in band.

After school, I told mom that I wanted to quit. She didn’t want me to. She told me to try it for a while and then see what I thought.

As time went on, the band grew. Mr. Johnson had gained the respect of the students and parents and more and more students joined the band. By the time I was a senior, we were over double the number of members from when I was a sophomore. Needless to say, I never thought about quitting again.

My senior year, we had District Music Contest in Tekamah. It seemed so odd to be going back to my old school for the last district contest I would play in. I was nervous that day, but yet confident. The small group I was in had practiced early in the mornings for weeks in preparation for the contest. The band sounded great. I had high hopes for the day.

Mr. Chapman found me just before my small group was to play. He told me how lucky Oakland-Craig was to have Mr. Johnson. I knew he was right. Mr. Chapman also came in and listened to my group play. I never felt so honored.

It takes time to get the judges results after playing, which made me even more nervous. I remember walking into the classroom our band was in and Brenda Nelson, one of the small group members, held up one finger to me, meaning we got a one, which is superior. The best rating possible and we had received it! I cried and cried. All of us from our group did, as we had never had the highest rating before.

The band played later that afternoon. I was nervous again. I think we all were. When we were finished, I knew we had gotten a superior. We had never sounded so good as we did that day!

Once the rating came in, we were all standing in front of the wall where they were posted, with Mr. Johnson. When the superior rating was posted we were all crying and hollering like we had just won the lottery! I will never forget the look on Mr. Johnson’s face. It was the first superior rating for Oakland-Craig’s band ever! That was just the beginning of what he would achieve in the many years to come, until he retired.

I learned a great deal from band and both of my instructors. I am blessed to have learned from the best. Mr. Chapman resides in Blair. Mr. Johnson passed away unexpectedly in August of 2012. He is greatly missed by all as he did so much for so many.

I still get my clarinet out from time to time and play the school song and think of these two and all they have done for so many people.

Music in school is important, and a gift one never forgets.



Spotlight on Seniors: Oakland-Craig’s Shelby Greve

1. Please list your family members.
 Parents Roy, Leslie and siblings Dustin Greve, Makayla Anderson.
2. How does it feel to be a senior?
Being a senior feels great! But after Christmas break you wish you could go back to freshman year and do it all over again. The 4 years your in high school you want it to go by slow so you can enjoy it! Being a senior is a great thing so you can see where you go in the future after you graduate! Enjoy your high school days. Especially your senior year.
3. What have been your favorite classes throughout school?
My favorite classes throughout high school would have to be any science class with Mrs. Penke. They are enjoyable and she is a fun teacher to have. You learn a lot just by listening because she isn’t one of the boring teachers. I love her classes because i love learning about the body, your bones and everything that can happen to your body that I had no clue could even happen. She’s a great teacher to have at Oakland-Craig!
4. What activities do you participate in school?
The activities I participate in school are volleyball (4 years) Wrestling student manager (4 years) Track (1 year) and outside of school for sports I do Gymnastics (12 years)
5. Whom, among all of your teachers through the years, have been your biggest influencers? What did you learn from them that has made you who you are?
I really can’t name any teacher that has influenced me the most, because every teacher here at Oakland-Craig has pushed me and pushed me to do my best in high school to make it far in life after i graduate! So, every teacher has influenced me a lot! I’ve learned to be myself, wherever and whoever I’m with. Don’t try to be any one you aren’t and live your life to the fullest!
6. How has your family helped and influenced you in your life?
My mom Leslie Greve, my sister Makayla Anderson and my cousin Cheri Johansen have influenced me a ton in my life. Pushing and pushing me to get good grades , and have fun while I’m at it! If it weren’t for those 3  I don’t know where I’d be in high school! I’m passing all my classes because they help me so much and prepare me for everything that will come out me in my future! They are the best and I’m glad I have a family I count on!
7. What do you and your friends do for fun?
My friends and I do a lot of things. Well. All my friends are in college now, but I still see them! Trishtian McNeill is one of my best friends. We go basically everywhere with each other! We drive around, shop, go to movies, ride around on the four wheeler or on the dirt bikes and be a little bit of rebels at some points, or if we are both feeling lazy we just sit around the house, make bunch of pizzas and watch movies at her house or mine, because we both consider each other family!
8. What have been some of your favorite moments in school?
I have had so many favorite moments in school that they hard to name. But, it would be watching my friends Nick Arlt and Bryce Uhing wrestle at State and any other meet and wrestle their hearts out, or in volleyball when we broke our school record for winning 20 games.
9. What are your plans after you graduate from high school?
My plans after I graduate are going to Metropolitan Community College and get my gen-eds out of the way and transfer to College of Saint Mary’s and get my Occupational Therapist degree and go on from there!
10. How excited were you to be the queen of the winter dance? What was it like to be crowned?
Being crowned at the winter dance was such a great feeling! I almost started crying because I was filled with joy!  No one from Craig has ever really been crowned at any dance beside Breanna McNeill! So it was a blessing! Being crowned with my best friend basically my brother Justin Smith was the best part of the night! We’ve been friends since pre-school and it was the best to be Queen with him! It was a great way to end my senior year that’s for sure! I’ll cherish this moment forever!
11. Once you graduate, what do you think you will miss the most about school?
When I graduate I’ll miss everything about Oakland-Craig. How small it is. My friends for sure and Cole Mitchell singing in the hallways! I’ll miss the teachers being so helpful and caring and wanting to help me, whenever I need help! I’ll miss helping the wrestling team and the volleyball team!
Shelby Greve

Shelby Greve

Oakland-Craig Schools Close Too!

Oakland-Craig has joined the list of many schools canceling classes tomorrow due to the very, very frigid temperatures.

No School for Oakland-Craig Students Friday

Oakland-Craig has cancelled classes for Friday, Nov. 7th. The OC football team travels to North Platte Friday for the second round of play offs. The game begins at 5:30 p.m.

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