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Nature trails are valuable asset for Horace May

The nature trails around Horace May Elementary School should not be jeopardized by the U.S. Highway 71 MnDOT project and MnDOT should consider alternative options in the placement of a driveway to the school.

The nature trails are a valuable facet of the elementary school, and serve many edifying purposes. For instance, the nature trails give students a unique opportunity to learn about conservation, local animal and plant life, and the ecosystem. It is important to teach children to respect the environment, especially with the pressing issues of global warming. There are hardly better ways to do so.

While we want to teach children the value of nature, tearing down forests to build a highway sends a completely different message about what receives priority in the adult world, and children do pick up on things like that. It conveys the message that saving money is more important than the protection of the environment, even more important than their education.

The nature trails around Horace May Elementary go beyond their use in science classes, and even educating the next generation on conservation. The trails offer more than hands-on study. They also provide a place for alternative exercise, a release from the busy atmosphere of the classroom, and a place for students to renew their focus. Horace May Elementary with its nature trails is an important part of the Bemidji community and the Bemidji area school system.

If school nature trails cannot be enjoyed in Bemidji, Minn., where can they be enjoyed?

Cyndi Fenske