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Wednesday, April 18th, 2007

Student to be first to receive diploma at end of junior year

By Margie Wuebker
MINSTER - A Minster High School student will make local history next spring when he receives a diploma at the end of his junior year. Board of education members as well as administrators could not be prouder judging from comments made Tuesday night.
Trenton Bihn, the son of Ralph and Kathy Bihn, will be the first student to receive a diploma under the board's accelerated learning and early graduation policy.
"By doubling up on math and science classes, he is on track to graduate with 22 credits," Superintendent Gayl Ray said. "The state requires 20 credits so he is setting the bar high."
Bihn, who is currently a sophomore, approached high school Principal Mike Lee at the start of the school year and expressed his intention to get a head start in college as an accounting major.
Lee told the board the only remaining requirement will be successful passage of the Ohio Graduation Test, but quickly added that should pose no problem for Bihn.
All school districts across Ohio had to implement an accelerated learning and early graduation policy during the past year.
In other business, the board:
• Met in executive session to discuss personnel and later extended continuing or limited contracts for five teachers.
• Approved a long list of contracts for classified personnel ranging from custodians and bus drivers to cafeteria servers and substitutes.
• Heard an update from Ray regarding the Ohio Department of Education's new World Class Educational System for Ohio initiative. Funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and researched by the "think tank" Achieve Inc., it would rival similar world class education systems in other countries like Japan and Sweden.
• Learned 79 prospective kindergarten students have been screened with parents having until May 5 to decide on sending their children in the fall or holding them another year.
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