The Beacon Academy School Board is made up of 9 voting members, 5 teachers, 3 parents, and 1 community member. Original MN charter school law calls for a teacher majority on the board of directors and Beacon still follows this framework. Terms are three years with the exception of the community member which has a two-year term. Board members may run for one additional term. The board chair must be a parent member. The Executive Committee oversees the Principal position and is comprised of the Board Chair, Vice-Chair, Treasurer, and Secretary.
The Governance Committee oversees the election process which runs from March to May of every year. Each parent or guardian of a student at the school and each employee has the right to cast one vote for the board candidates. Board member terms run July 1 to June 30.
School board meetings are open to the public. Meetings are typically on the 3rd Thursday of the month at 6:30 pm at our school at 3415 Louisiana Ave N, Crystal MN. Check the school calendar for up-to-date school board meeting dates and times.
School Board Elections
School Board elections will be done exclusively by US mail. Election materials are being mailed to the community on Friday, April 30, 2021. Election ballots are to be returned to the school in the self addressed stamped envelope provided with the election materials. Envelopes must be post marked by Thursday, May 13, 2021. All ballots will be counted on Monday, May 17, 2021 at 4:00 p.m. at Beacon Academy. Results will be announced at the May 20, 2021 school board meeting.
The Board Chair has determined that in-person meetings are not prudent, due to the ongoing COVID-19 health pandemic and the Executive Orders of the Governor to shelter in place. Therefore, in accordance with MN Statute 13D.021, committee meetings will be conducted by telephone conference, at their regularly scheduled times. Dial-in information for the committee meetings is available from the Board Chair by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling/texting 612-405-8486.
Full Board Meeting
With the loosening of COVID-19 restrictions and the updates to Beacon's summer learning plans, the Board has decided to return to meeting in person for regular board meetings. Members of the public are welcome to attend.
For the summer, we will be observing the following mitigation strategies for board members and other attendees:
- Masks are advised for non-vaccinated people.
- Physical distancing is encouraged between households.
- Hand sanitizer will be available at the meeting entrance.
Unfortunately, due to technology limitations, this means that the regular board meetings will no longer be available via Zoom. We apologize for any inconvenience.
We look forward to being back together to accomplish our work. Questions may be directed to me via email at email@example.com or by calling/texting me at 612-405-8486.
Thank you for your patience and understanding as we transition back into the building.
Any special meeting information will be posted here.
School Board Retreat
Any board retreat information will be posted here.
Board Meetings 2021-2022
October 19th (Tuesday)
March 15th (Tusday)
Wendy Terry, Board Chair
My family and I have been part of the Beacon community since the fall of 2006, when my eldest daughter started kindergarten here. My daughters have both graduated from Beacon, and we have two sons that we expect to have enrolled until they graduate 8th grade as well. Over the years, I have volunteered in multiple capacities, including serving as moving day logistics point person for the move to Crystal and serving twice on the PTO Board. I have almost 20 years of experience serving on non-profit boards in 3 states and currently work part-time as a member of the fund development team at a local church. In my free time, I enjoy reading, working logic puzzles, and watching sci-fi and comic book movies with my family.
Our family came to Beacon because of the rigorous curriculum and daily Spanish. We stayed through 2 moves and 3 suburbs because of the amazing community we found here. My goal is to continue to see our founding principles of rigor, character, and community grow and thrive in our new home.
Parent seat, term expires June 2022
Kris Gapinski, Vice Chair
I am a 5th grade teacher at Beacon Academy. I first came to Beacon Academy as a long term substitute in 6th grade math and social studies, then in 5th grade. I enjoyed my experience so much that I decided to join the great staff as a permanent member. My license is K-8, middle school language arts. I am currently perusing a reading licensure with a masters in literacy. I have been involved in committees, such as Facility Planning, Leadership, Transition, Friends of Beacon, and Curriculum.
When I am not at school I enjoy time with my husband, Steve and our 2 children Brittany and Ben. I enjoy Indy Car races, reading, sewing, scrapbooking, and cross-stitching.
Teacher seat, term expires June 2023
Aaron Price, Board Treasurer
I am the proud parent of three wonderful children. Two of my children currently attend Beacon Academy and one more will attend when old enough. I have been a licensed foster parent for Hennepin county and have participated on several for-profit and non-profit boards. I feel very privileged to serve the Beacon Academy community in this way. My wife, Johanna, and I are strong proponents of Beacon’s approach to education, character building, and community.
Parent seat, term expires June 2024
Paige Roth, Board Secretary
Teacher seat, term expires June 2023
Elizabeth Warpinski, Board Member
I have taught 7th grade, 8th grade, and Honors English at Beacon Academy since 2019. I have also served on the Technology Committee and facilitated the Middle School Book Club, as well as helped to establish a student-centered racial justice group. Beacon Academy has welcomed, accepted, and valued me every day since I arrived, and as a board member, it is my duty to pay that forward. This school is truly unique in how it promotes the involvement of students, staff, faculty, and families in crafting a learning environment that sets students up to be successful in all areas of their life, both while they are a student and long after they have left. I am committed to maintaining and bolstering Beacon Academy's tradition of equity, advocacy, and collaboration while also adapting to the ever-changing needs of our students and families.
Beyond Beacon Academy, I am passionate about creative writing, critical media analysis, and playing rugby, although I have been known to bring my hobbies into the classroom.
Teacher seat, term expires June 2024
Joanna Pederson, Board Member
I have been a member of the Beacon community since 2013. Over that period, I have been a middle school Spanish teacher, a K-2 Spanish teacher, and a 2-3 Spanish teacher, and now I am an EL teacher. I have been involved in many committees at Beacon, including the Leadership, Literacy, EL, Character Education, and Curriculum Committees. I am passionate about linguistics and language acquisition and have written Spanish curriculum as well as helped to start heritage Spanish classes at Beacon.
As a member of the school board, I am interested in continuing our tradition of a focus on Spanish and Character Education, and to help with the school’s goals of equity and building strong relationships within the community.
Outside of Beacon, my interests include my dogs, Saebra and Nova, true crime podcasts and documentaries, reading everything from research papers to middle grade fantasy books, traveling, dancing, and musical theater
Teacher seat, term expires June 2024
Elizabeth Brobeck, Board Member
I am a 3rd grade teacher at Beacon Academy. I began teaching here in the 2017-18 school year and am proud and passionate about our Beacon community. Along with teaching, I’ve been a co-chair of our Drama Club and Destination Imagination teams, as well as provided assistance for our middle school Volleyball Club. I am honored to now be a part of our school board. As a member, I plan to support our school’s values and missions, from Character Education to upholding our strong community of learners, staff, and families.
Outside of Beacon, I enjoy exploring the beautiful Twin Cities, reading, traveling, and spending time with my friends and family.
Teacher seat, term expires June 2022
Matheu Weidenbach, Board Member
I am happy to have the opportunity to serve the Beacon Academy community as a member of the board. Representing the best interests of our students, families, and staff is an honor. My family has been a part of the Beacon community since 2019, and my wife Angela and I have a son in second grade. In my professional life, I have experience in various aspects of project/financial management and business operations, and I actively volunteer for several non-profit organizations. In my personal life, I enjoy spending time with my family, hiking, traveling, and being outside.
We joined Beacon because we were drawn to Beacon's focus on community and a rigorous, character-based curriculum, and have been excited to see the growth our son has experienced within this caring and thoughtful educational framework. I firmly believe in taking a student-first approach that balances the needs of the broader community in order to drive the best outcomes for our kids. I look forward to contributing to both maintaining and building upon the foundational principles that make Beacon so great.
Parent seat, term expires June 2024
We are currently in need of a Community Member
Community seat, term expires June 2022
Beacon Academy has four board-level committees. These committees meet monthly, receive direction from the board, and report back to the board as appropriate. The committees are made up of board members, staff members, and parents, and all meetings are open to the public.
The Curriculum Committee reviews the school's curriculum on a defined review cycle and makes recommendations to the school board based on their findings. They meet once a month while school is in session. Refer to the school calendar for meeting days and times.
Employee Retention and Compensation
The Employee Retention and Compensation Committee explores avenues for retaining our quality employees through monetary and non-monetary compensation. Meetings take place when school is in session. Refer to the school calendar for meeting days and times.
Fund Development Task Force
The Fund Development Task Force searches for alternative funding avenues for Beacon Academy.
The Finance Committee works closely with the Business Manager, the Board Treasurer, and the Principal to ensure financial accountability and stability for Beacon Academy. The Finance Committee meets at 5:30 p.m. the same day as the board meetings.. If the board meeting date/time changes, so does the Finance Committee meeting. The chair of the Finance Committee is Aaron Price. To attend a Finance Committee meeting via Zoom please contact Aaron at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Finance Committee Meeting Dates:
The Governance Committee reviews and creates the policies for Beacon Academy. They meet monthly all year around except for July and December. This committee meets one Monday night a month. The chair of the Governance Committee is Ann Marie Roder. To attend a Governance Committee meeting via Zoom please contact Ann Marie at email@example.com
Governance Committee Meeting Dates:
Meeting Agendas 2021
Meeting Agendas 2020
Meeting Agendas 2019
Meeting Agendas 2018
Meeting Minutes 2021
Meeting Minutes 2020
Meeting Minutes 2019
Meeting Minutes 2018
Friends of Beacon (FOB) is a building corporation, formed as a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization on behalf of Beacon Academy. FOB meets as needed.
Friends of Beacon Board Members
- Ann Marie Roder - President
- Matt Goodman - Treasurer
- Melanie Spall - Secretary