Welcome to Martensdale-St. Marys Community School District

Inspire. Challenge. Grow.

Through the years, class after class of Blue Devil students continue to represent those three words well. To be part of the MStM community is to be surrounded by caring and nurturing staff and peers that inspire and challenge each other to blaze their path forward. MStM alumni continue to make a difference after graduation, having grown into productive and lifelong learners. MStM works hard to live its vision: A school community that fosters personal excellence and responsible citizenship.

News & Announcements

Facilities Meetings Scheduled

The Martensdale-St. Marys Community School District will hold two Facilities Presentation and Community Input sessions regarding the facilities in the school district.

These sessions are slated for Thursday, October 12, 2023, at 5:30pm in St. Marys at the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church Hall and Monday, October 23, 2023, at 5:30pm in the Martensdale-St. Marys Junior / Senior High School Media Center.

The agenda for both sessions is as follows:

  1. Introduction
  2. Overview of our Facilities Condition Report that was recently completed by Denovo Construction Services
  3. An activity geared toward gaining input from community members on programming and facilities the District needs to consider moving forward
  4. A discussion of next steps

Please make plans to attend one of these meetings to share your thoughts on our future.

Board Election Set for November 7

There are three seats up for election on the Martensdale-St. Marys Community School District’s Board of Directors on November 7, 2023.

Listed below are the Director positions open with the candidates for each:


District #3 (4-year term)

Jeff Bowlin (incumbent) – Prole, IA


District #4 (2-year term)

Heath Banks – Prole, IA

Brenda Halverson – Norwalk, IA

This opening follows the resignation of Rusty Kordick in September. Banks was appointed by the Board of Directors on September 25, 2023, and will be sworn in for the period through the election on October 9, 2023.


District #5 (4-year term)

Nicole Bunch (incumbent) – Prole, IA

Colleen Christy Haglan-Lynch – Prole, IA


Polling Locations

Polling places for Director District #3

Jefferson Precinct – St. Paul’s Lutheran Church (615 Iowa Ave, Martensdale)

Lincoln 1 Precinct – Indianola Parks & Rec. (2204 W. 2nd Ave, Indianola)

and in Madison County

Jackson Building (1146 W Summit, Winterset)


Polling places for Director District #4

Jefferson Precinct – St. Paul’s Lutheran Church (615 Iowa Ave, Martensdale)

Linn Precinct – The Wright Place (340 Wright Rd. Ste. A, Norwalk)


Polling places for District #5

Jackson Building (1146 W Summit, Winterset)

Trinity Lutheran Church (1195 Prairieview Ave, Rural Van Meter)

Annual Immunization Clinic Set for October 13

We are planning to hold our annual Flu / Covid Immunization Clinic with Hy-Vee on the morning of Friday October 13, 2023, from 7:30am – 8:30am. You will be able to receive either or both immunizations. The flu clinic will be held in the common area between the gyms, please enter the building through the main doors.

Flu and Covid immunizations are available to any students, staff, families, and community members. If someone is interested in receiving a Flu or Covid shot, we ask that they email Lynn Wente, school nurse at lynn_wente@mstm.us or call 641-764-2621 so that we can give Hy-Vee an idea of how many immunizations to bring.

If you would like your student to receive immunizations, you do not have to be here with your student, but your student must be willing to receive the immunizations as we will not restrain a student. We must have the consent and insurance information to give students immunizations.

On the day of the clinic, please bring this consent form: Hy-Vee Immunization Consent Form

In addition, please bring a copy of your insurance / pharmacy card or bring the card to the clinic. Hy-Vee will submit this to your insurance.

If you have questions, please contact Lynn Wente, School Nurse at 641-764-2621 or via e-mail at lynn_wente@mstm.us.

Thank you to Hy-Vee for partnering with us to provide this service to our school and community.

Needs Assessment Survey Now Open

The Martensdale-St. Marys Community School District is seeking your participation in a Needs Assessment related to our schools. This survey is open to students, staff, parents / guardians, and the community.

Schools in Iowa are required by law to conduct a Needs Assessment every 3-5 years. Our last assessment was completed in 2018.

This assessment provides a mechanism to gather input and assess the climate of our school district and compare that to the previous study and other school districts throughout the state. We will use this as we critically evaluate the current state of our school district. This survey should take less than 10 minutes to complete.

Please complete the survey here:

2023 Needs Assessment Survey


To view a copy of the survey in advance of taking it, you may find that here:  IASB Survey Instrument 2023

Thank you in advance for your participation in this survey.

Safe and Sound Iowa Reporting

The Martensdale-St. Marys Community School District is partnering with the Governor’s School Safety Bureau in providing a threat reporting tool, SafeandSoundIowa.gov, for students, teachers, parents, and the community.

In past school attacks in the United States, 92% of those who noticed concerning behaviors before the events were schoolmates (US Federal Bureau of Investigation). Students may not report warning signs due to feelings of anxiety or intimidation, fear of retaliation or not knowing who to talk to. Safe+Sound Iowa removes these barriers with easy, convenient, and confidential ways to report safety concerns.

Reports can be made securely and anonymously:

  • Online at SafeandSoundIowa.gov
  • Through the Safe+Sound Iowa mobile app, or
  • By phone at 800-224-6018.

Trained dispatchers monitor reports 24/7 and immediately engage in two-way communication with those raising concerns. They then reach out to the appropriate local school safety contact, law enforcement or other community partners.

You can download the free Safe+Sound Iowa mobile app on the App Store and Google Play.

Creating a safe learning environment is our highest priority, and it starts with early detection of potential threats.

Thank you for your attention this morning and for helping keep each other, our school, and our community safe.

You can learn more about Safe+Sound Iowa here:  Safe+Sound Iowa

Board Seeks to Appoint Director

Pursuant to Iowa Code 279.6, the Martensdale-St. Marys School Board publishes this notice of its intent to appoint a person to fill a vacancy on the Board. This vacancy is in District #4 and will be in effect until after the November School Board election. Interested individuals should reach out to the Board Secretary, Josh Jacobs, at josh_jacobs@mstm.us or via phone at 641-764-2466.

Eligible electors of the Martensdale-St. Marys Community School District have the right to file a petition requiring this vacancy be filled by special election. Petitions must be received by the board secretary within 14 days after the publication of this notice (September 25, 2023). For details and signatory requirements, contact the board secretary.

Homecoming Week Schedule

Martensdale-St. Marys Homecoming 2023 – “The Wild West”

If you or your organization are interested in having an entry in the homecoming parade, then please contact Josh Moser at josh_moser@MSTM.us. If you have a golf cart that you were willing to loan to a  homecoming court candidate, then please contact Max Seeman at max_seeman@MSTM.us.


Monday, September 11th

All Day “Mauney Monday” (Cowboy and Cowgirl Day

4:00 PM JH Volleyball vs. Clarke (HS Gym)

4:30 PM JH XC @ Pleasantville

5:00 PM HS XC @ Pleasantville

5:30 PM Varsity VB Triangular @ Southeast Warren


Tuesday, September 12th

All Day “Tumbleweed Tuesday” (Pajama Day)

4:00 PM JH Volleyball @ Interstate 35

5:30 PM JV2 Volleyball vs. Central Decatur (HS Gym)

6:00 PM JV Volleyball vs. Central Decatur (HS Gym)

7:00 PM Varsity Volleyball vs. Central Decatur (HS Gym)


Wednesday, September 13th

All Day “Pink and Ponies” (Barbie Day)

1:00PM Early Dismissal for Teacher Professional Development


Thursday, September 14th

All Day “Coastal Cowboy” (Hawaiian Day)

4:00pm Tailgate Fundraiser Dinner (Stadium Concession Stand)

6:00pm Homecoming Court Coronation* (Stadium)

6:30pm Homecoming Parade

7:00pm Ironman Volleyball (HS Gym)

7:45pm Powderpuff Football** (Stadium)

*Rain location: HS Gym

**In case of inclement weather, a make-up date will be decided pending availability


Friday, September 15th

All Day “Blue Devil Rodeo” (Blue Devil Spirit Day)

2:00PM Secondary Games (Grades 7-12)

2:45PM School-Wide Pep Assembly

7:00PM Varsity Football Game vs. North Mahaska

9:30PM Homecoming Dance (Grades 9-12 only)


Saturday, September 16th

9:00 AM Varsity Volleyball Tournament @ Mount Ayr

Homecoming 2023 – “The Wild West”

This is Homecoming Week in the Martensdale-St. Marys Community School District.

Students voted on Homecoming Court representatives Wednesday, and they are as follows:

9th Grade Attendants

Ben Snyder and Finley Pearson


10th Grade Attendants

Travis White and Kathryn Ballard


11th Grade Attendants

Thomas Mundil and Maryann Hart


12th Grade Queen Candidates

Carolyn Amfahr

Jeanie Choate

Brynnly German

Campbell German

Sophia Shannon


12th Grade King Candidates

Jaxon Bowlin

Conor Cassady

Sampson Henson

Riley Nichols

Kade Mullins

Congratulations to all of our attendants! They will all be recognized during the Coronation

Ceremony and Parade on Thursday, September 14, 2023.


Last week, the JH/HS Student Council voted on and finalized plans for the week’s activities –

specifically what Thursday, September 14 will look like.

Here’s a tentative order of those events and the approximate starting times:

Thursday, September 14 Homecoming Activities Schedule

4:00pm Tailgate Fundraiser Dinner (Stadium Concession Stand)

6:00pm Homecoming Court Coronation* (Stadium)

6:30pm Homecoming Parade

7:00pm Ironman Volleyball (HS Gym)

7:45pm Powderpuff Football** (Stadium)

*Rain location: HS Gym

**In case of inclement weather, a make-up date will be decided pending availability


There will be a pre-coronation dinner, consisting of either a

hamburger, shredded bbq chicken,

or brat, chips, pop and a cookie, for $7 that

goes towards the MSTM Post Prom. There will also

be a bake sale, hair tinsel, and tattoos available for purchase.

2023-2024 SIAC Members Needed

The School Improvement Advisory Committee (SIAC) is a community group that gives stakeholder voice to school improvement goals and actions of the Martensdale-St. Marys Community School District.

Based on the committee members’ analysis of the needs assessment data, they will make recommendations to the Board about the following components:

  1. Major educational needs
  2. Student learning goals
  3. Curriculum, assessment, and instruction
  4. Long range and annual goals that include, but are not limited to, the state indicators that address reading, mathematics, and science achievement
  5. Bullying and harassment prevention goals, programs, training, and other initiatives
  6. Any other issues which relate to school improvement

The SIAC makes decisions based on the best interest of students aligned with the district’s mission and vision.

The Martensdale-St. Marys Community School District’s SIAC will meet in the Media Center on these dates:

October 17, 2023             5:30pm – 6:30pm

January 22, 2024              5:30pm – 6:30pm – subject to change

April 18, 2024                    5:30pm – 6:30pm – subject to change

If you are interested in joining the SIAC, please send an e-mail indicating your interest with your name, connection to the school (i.e. student, teacher, parent, community member), and your contact information to Dr. Bill Watson at bill_watson@mstm.us by September 1, 2023.

The Board of Directors will approve the committee for the 2023-2024 school year at its regular meeting on September 11, 2023.

Thank you.

2023 School Board Election

The next School Board Election in the Martensdale-St. Marys Community School District is November 7, 2023.

There are three seats open in 2023. These are in District 3, District #4, and District 5. This Map shows the board member districts.

2023 Board Election Timeline

August 28

These must be filed with the Board Secretary Josh Jacobs (due September 21, 2023 at 5:00).

  • The affidavit of candidacy and nomination petitions must be filed together or they will be rejected. Copies of nomination papers are available at the school district office (please contact the Board Secretary Josh Jacobs), the county auditor’s office, or on the Secretary of State’s Website.
  • The minimum number of signatures needed depends on the number of registered voters in the school district. In the Martensdale-St.Marys Community School District, 10 signatures are required, but it is recommended to obtain more should any signatures be considered invalid.

September 21, 5:00pm: Nomination filing deadline
September 26, 5:00pm: Candidate Withdrawal Deadline
October 23, 5:00pm:  Absentee Ballot by Mail Request Deadline
November 6: Absentee Ballot In-Person Deadline
November 7: School Board Election Day

Current Board of Directors – Martensdale-St.Marys Community School District

District 1:         Bill Denny, term expires in 2025

District 2:         Travis Tibbits, term expires in 2025

District 3:         Jeff Bowlin, Board Vice President, term expires in 2023

District 4:         OPEN

District 5:         Nicole Bunch, Board President, term expires in 2023


The Board of Directors meets monthly at 5:30pm in the Martensdale-St.Marys Media Center.  Additional meetings are held as necessary.


For more information, contact Board Secretary Josh Jacobs at 641-764-2608 / josh_jacobs@mstm.us or Superintendent Dr. Bill Watson 641-764-2466 / bill_watson@mstm.us.

Close-Knit Community, Widespread Achievements

Laptops for grades 7-12
Graduation Rate
> 70%
Students involved in activities
Educator Effectiveness Score
> 80%
of elementary students are proficient in math and literacy
Student to Teacher Ratio
Learn More About Our District