Project Grill huge success for students, restaurant

Dave Cary Review Correspondent

The usual specification for entrants in Project Grill - a cooperative venture between area high schools and several area manufacturing firms in which student groups design a unique grill, with advice from teachers and manufacturing professionals - calls for a grill that can cook 10 brats at a time.

The Plymouth High School team, however, was creating its grill for the Three Guys and a Grill restaurant’s catering operation and 10 brats just wouldn’t cut it. So they upped it to 350.

Begun a year ago September, the project lasted until late May/early June, culminating with formally presenting the creation to Three Guys and a Grill at their restaurant. Principal sponsors of this event were the Curt Joa Company, and the restaurant itself, although other firms also contributed.

PHS tech ed teachers Jake Sherman, Greg Gritt and Beau Biller, along with Three Guys co-owner Scott McMurray and several student participants, told the School Board about the project Tuesday.

The finished trailer-mounted grill, as stated, can grill 350 brats at once. The grill itself - which weighs over 600 lbs - is moveable, being mounted on what corresponds to a slide-out on a camping trailer. The grill is designed to funnel ash downward into a drawer for simplified ash handling, and can also be set up as a rotisserie large enough to roast a pig. It provides ample direct and indirect grilling area.

Also on the grill’s trailer is a setby up table and a warming stand. The setup table includes a hand washing sink and the trailer is equipped with lights for after-dark events.

In the project, students are exposed to a typical step-by-step manufacturing process, under a chosen project leader and subsidiary team leaders, with various steps having to be completed - including research of how the grill was to be used - before going to the next. Fabrication of the actual trailer/grill did not start until January and was done at the Joa plant with advice and assistance from certain Joa employees.

The three faculty members said the students enthusiasm for the project was a major teaching reward in their experience. McMurray, who was close to the project throughout, said the major decisions were arrived at by the students themselves, although it was tempting for advisers to want to jump in. The finished grill works very well, McMurray said.

The project was funded through a grant from Project Grill, and several other donations. Total cost was put at about $6,000-$7,000. Faculty members figured they put in about 300 hours over the entire project of their own time.

Students said they especially liked being able to work on different segments of the project, which they were free to do. They also liked the teamwork involved in developing solutions. Faculty members said that the give-and-take between students, especially during the design stages, gave a keen professional satisfaction.

. . .

The board gave the first reading to a new Continuing Disclosure

Compliance policy, which will guide its participation in the Securities and Exchange Commissions Municipalities and Continuing Disclosure initiative. This is intended to assure financial reporting done by the district will be both accurate and timely, and, according to district business manager Jon Miller, should help in any future bond issuing the district does.

The board approved construction and installation of a new fire door at Horizon Elementary School, to be done by low bidder North Star Equipment Company. Their bid, which was accepted, is for $45,000. Miller said the door is this expensive because it is, in essence, a custom door.

. . .

. A four-tier mini-greenhouse for the special ed room, given by Paul and Deb Ebert.

. $500 from the DANK Society (a German language society) to be used toward scholarships for student travel and group expenses.

. $550 from the Vollrath Company to be used for the ProStart Program.

. $2,000 from the Fairview PTO to be used toward mini personal computers.

. $597.97 from the Fairview PTO for teacher supplies.

. $7,533 from Riverview RAPT for an audio system for smarty boards.

. $131.99 from Horizon PATH for student transportation and plysical education supplies.

. $45.86 from the Sheboygan Human Rights Association for student transportation.

. . .

In personnel matters the board accepted a retirement request submitted by Fairview School Principal Amy Flood, who has been with the district for 35 years.

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