Short Takes for May 31

Minnesota lawmakers come through for pre-kindergarten programs

THUMBS UP:

Marshall Public Schools received good news this week when it was confirmed that the Minnesota Legislature passed an education finance bill that included $46.79 million for pre-kindergarten classes across the state. The news, according to Superintendent Scott Monson, will allow the district to plan for the preschool programs. After all, early childhood education was one of the major parts of the $29.8 million school referendum Marshall voters passed this month. The referendum included construction of a three-classroom early childhood addition at Park Side Elementary. Currently, pre-K classes are held in the Marshall Middle School building.

A U.S. senator and a congressman in Marshall on the same day

THUMBS UP:

Every so often one of our U.S senators or Congressman Collin Peterson will show up in Marshall or a nearby community for some sort of official visit. But it’s a rarity to get a senator and U.S. representative in Marshall on the same day and almost at the same time. U.S. Sen. Tina Smith announced a week ago she would be meeting with area educators and mental health professionals Thursday at Marshall High School in the late morning and early afternoon to hear about local efforts to provide mental health services in school. Then on Tuesday, Collin Peterson’s office rushed out a release late in the day announcing that the congressman would be holding a town hall for farmers in Marshall Thursday morning. The late notice is understandable. Farmers dealing with wet fields and a tariff war between the U.S. And China, are facing a deadline to make a decision to plant or file for insurance payments. We believe farmers appreciate the congressman take the time to help southwest farmers sort through the different options.

Losing our area nursing homes

THUMBS DOWN:

First the Colonial Manor in Balaton, now we hear that the Slayton Rehabilitation & Healthcare Center is closing. Both care facilities cited financial reasons. Both closures, however, will be inconvenience for the residents of these facilities and their families.

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