Center’s current enrollment hovering around 27

    The Crookston School Board moved its Monday meeting from its typical venue, Crookston High School, to the new location of New Paths Area Learning Center to check out the renovated space that starting serving students at the beginning of this school year.

    For years the ALC was located a few blocks to the north downtown, in the portable classroom building located on Downtown Square property near the former Central Junior High School. The district rented the building from Resource Management, Inc. But when Dillon Fenno purchased the former Crookston National Bank space on Robert Street and moved his Synergy Hub/Center there, he had excess space in the rear, so he reached a lease agreement with the school district to move the ALC there. The district first had to do some renovations, including constructing a wall to further separate the ALC from Fenno’s Herbalife business in front.

    “It was a lot of work bringing this ALC together, but as you can see, it turned out pretty nice; it’s certainly an upgrade from where we were,” Superintendent Chris Bates said at Monday’s board meeting. “It turned out pretty darn well, and now we have a long-term solution.”

    While the board met in the ALC conference room, the ALC’s lone full-time teacher, Veronica Whitehead, did some work on her laptop nearby.

    “It’s just wonderful here,” she said.

    Whitehead is in her third year at the ALC. She’s assisted by Dee Sperling, and the ALC’s administrative assistant is Crystal Palomo.

    Currently, Whitehead said, the ALC has an enrollment of approximately 27 students. Most come from Crookston, she noted, but, scanning the roster, she said students come from school districts such as Oklee-Plummer, Fertile-Beltrami, and East Grand Forks.