Braham Area High School seniors will be able to enjoy a more traditional graduation ceremony this May.

Details of graduation were discussed during the Braham Area School Board meeting April 19.

Graduation is planned to begin at 7 p.m. inside the East Gym on May 28. Up to three spectators per graduate are allowed to attend, and their names must be given in person, over the phone, or via email to Tammi Johnson at or by calling 320-396-5200.

The activities entrance will open at 6 p.m. and seating will be based on a first-come, first-served basis. Social distancing and masking will be enforced.

Activities director and high school principal report

Shawn Kuhnke, Braham High School principal and activities director, said schedule changes occur frequently. For example, recently the JV baseball game was canceled due to quarantine issues, he said.

“So it can happen for a variety of different reasons, so just make sure you’re up to date on the school schedule,” Kuhnke said.

Participation numbers in sports are better this year compared to last year, Kuhnke added. Students are happy to participate even with the state masking mandate, he said.

“When the (Minnesota State High School League) came up with the mask mandate that all kids and all sports had to wear masks at all times,” Kuhnke explained, “the kids really did take it in stride and because the alternative is they just don’t play, which is something that obviously they don’t want to have happened like last year. So they’re wearing the masks and they’re competing and they’re participating. Other than today being on the cold side, it’s been great so far.”

Elementary principal report

Braham Elementary Principal Jeff Eklund said there’s an ongoing construction of a playground near the baseball field across the bridge just north of Braham High School. The playground is scheduled for completion in early August.

“And thanks to everyone that’s putting time and money to make that happen,” Eklund said.

Eklund also thanked Grandy Lions for donating money to fund the sixth grade Young Rembrandts online art curriculum.

The Team Award winner for April was Katelyn Robelia, a new paraprofessional to the district working within early childhood special education.

“She’s had to jump between (kindergarten through three) special ed, early childhood special ed ... and just like a lot of our staff, very flexible and willing to help out,” he said. “We’re lucky to have (Robelia).”

Superintendent report

Braham Area Schools Superintendent Ken Gagner explained that the district continues to offer COVID-19 testing every other week.

“Again, it’s strongly encouraged. It’s free. It’s on-site. Any of our employees can participate,” Gagner said. “As far as vaccines, there have been multiple, multiple opportunities. Any staff member who’s wanted a vaccine has had multiple opportunities to get those.”

The district recently started offering free COVID-19 vaccines to students ages 16 and older, Gagner said.

“Isanti County Public Health in partnership with Allina health care systems will be on-site right here in the school,” he explained. “And we’ve sent out that link. I’ll probably send out another reminder tomorrow (April 20). So, any of our (students) who want to get vaccinated, can get vaccinated. And the second shot will be right on-site, as well. So it’s kind of neat.”

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