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Pioneer Editorial: Cheers and Jeers

Cheer: Art room inspires elementary kids

Horace May Elementary School art teacher Leo Alberti started a unique tradition five years ago. His students paint the art room with murals following a theme. One year, the theme was under the sea. This year, the theme is Big City, Little City. A project that all students can contribute to is an excellent strategy for fostering creativity.

Cheer: Legion welcomes national commander

Veterans filled all the tables at Bemidji's Ralph Gracie American Legion Post last week to greet American Legion National Commander David Rehbein. Rehbein said one of the principles of leadership is to visit the troops, and he made good on that responsibility in his tour of northern Minnesota. He discussed veterans' concerns and informed the gathering of national directions in veterans' service.

Cheer: Manufacturer honored by SBA

The U.S. Small Business Administration recognized Andy Wells, owner and president of Wells Technology, as Minnesota Small Business Person of the Year. Wells' business, started in 1989 with the help of his wife, Carol, and a personal investment of $1,300, shows the success patience, perseverance and hard work can bring. That Wells wants to share his company's success by helping young people learn job skills through Wells Academy is another positive facet of the enterprise.

Jeer: Traitor students

Students hostile to their school and at-risk dropouts are the youngsters who might be expected to commit the crimes of theft from fellow students. But in the case of Winona Senior High School, three honor students have been charged with stealing more than $1,300 in cash and merchandise from fellow students' lockers. The three boys, ages 17 and 16, have been charged with felony theft and receiving stolen property. However, if the charges stick, almost as troubling is the lack of loyalty to and empathy with their fellow students.