Local Legislators Tour Bemidji Area Schools
Four of our elected officials were in Bemidji today to take a tour of our schools. They were first welcomed at Bemidji High School early this morning with a performance from the orchestra and choir.
“I liked it all. I was very impressed over at the high school we got to see some very talented students with the concert,” says Senator Paul Utke, who represents District 2.
“We’ve been working on this for some time and we worked through Senator Eichorn’s office and asked if we could set this up on a day when school was in session,” says Bemidji School District Superintendent Dr. James Hess.
“I was absolutely amazed at the quality of programming that was here and just the interest level from the students that we saw here today. One of my favorite pieces was the robotics program,” says Senator Justin Eichorn of District 5.
Throughout the day, the legislatures were shown exactly what it was that made Bemidji Area Schools great. From the extensive technology used in the high school all the way down to the programs that are taught in the pre-school classes.
Dr. Hess says, “The legislatures wanted to know what are we doing as far as science, technology, engineering and math and in Bemidji, we have made a huge commitment to stem classes.”
“There are wonderful jobs out there for students to look at in the trades, in nursing, in law enforcement, in construction, all of that stuff, so that was one of the main highlights for me today,” says Representative Matt Grossell of District 2A.
The elected officials walked through the halls of the high school, Bemidji Middle School and the Bemidji Early Childhood Education building. Dr. Hess says visits like these are important because it will help them know what exactly it is they’re representing.
“It’s essential for legislatures to know what they’re schools are offering, what are some of the issues at their schools, what are some of the opportunities that the schools present,” says Dr. Hess.
The Senators and Representatives also talked with students throughout the day and teachers who they gave high marks.
Rep. Grossell says, “For me, one of the most important things is putting good teachers in front of our students and some of the teachers that I spoke to today, we’re very successful at that. Putting good teachers in front of our students.”
Representative Matt Bliss of District 5A says, “It’s nice to get out and actually see and experience what our tax dollars are being spent on versus just looking at a spreadsheet and talking to people, and it’s nice to get out and actually see what’s happening with our money.”
The legislatures say they plan to make frequent stops in Bemidji to help with future projects around town.