I became an art teacher and spent a few years in Northome Minnesota before budget cuts sent me in a different direction. Fifteen years passed while I worked as a commercial printer before I had the opportunity to return to the classroom. I strived to make the most of my second chance, doing everything I could to build an art program that was an integral part of student’s lives, and a valuable member of the school community.
Over my twenty-four years teaching in Bemidji, its citizens voted many times to support strong schools and programs like mine. I can’t say that we always had adequate funding needed for our classes, but I do know that we made a difference in many students’ lives. The arts are the highlight of many students’ day, but are first on the chopping block when funding is tight.
Bemidji Schools are at a disadvantage with overwhelming transportation costs and underfunded federal mandates. The Corona Virus has also strained district resources without any real help from the government. For these reasons and more I plan on voting Yes on the referendum. I have faith that the good citizens of Bemidji will see the district’s need and respond with the spirit needed to keep Bemidji Schools the “Star of the Northland”.