By Angelo Parlove
Saline Middle School students entertained, educated and even dazzled board members this week, as the middle school hosted the Saline Area Schools Board of Education meeting March 28 in its media center.
“It’s never boring here. There’s 1222 students – sixth, seventh and eighth graders — so our days go quick,” said Brad Bezeau, the new principal at Saline Middle School, who took over the post this school year. “I’m not sure I’ve ever had more fun than this year, getting to know our staff here at the middle school. The students are certainly fun.”
Following a concert the night before, the eighth grade jazz band first entertained the school board, playing a pair of selections as the board and other audience members were arriving in the media center. The tunes filled the room as Carrigan Cafe provided snacks for the crowd.
The jazz band is lead by orchestra teacher Benjamin Reed and meets every Thursday morning at 6:45 am, with practices running for 45 minutes. The band also played a quick, uptempo tune called “Leap Frog” later in the meeting.
“As you know in Saline, we take music very seriously,” Bezeau said. “We’re very good at music from our powerhouse marching band to our state-festival winning choirs, our Saline Fiddlers orchestra. We’re certainly proud of that again tonight.”
Not to be outdone, the middle school choir – featuring 14 seventh and eighth grade singers out of a total of 53 participants – performed two songs during the meeting, receiving a hearty round of applause from board members and attendees after each number.
Choir teacher Eric Floetke led the choir through the songs, which the group also performed recently at a festival, where they received a Division 1 excellent rating. “It’s the best you can get, which is pretty awesome,” Floetke said.
The evening then turned from entertainment to education, as several seventh grade students updated the board on a recent project that saw them design small CO2 cars in teacher Ed Gall’s science classes. With notes in hand, the students detailed how they first researched, then designed the cars with CAD software, which were finally made with a 3D printer.
Overall, Gall’s science classes made 58 cars, teaching the students about aerodynamics, drag coefficient and mass in order to make the fastest cars. The students dazzled school board members, launching several of the carbon-dioxide powered cars – which can reach speeds of 60 miles per hours – in the hallway outside the media center.