Impressed by Community Ed.

It is seldom that one is impressed with an enterprise in a community over the long term, both in judicious use of resources, but also in leadership in contributions to the growth and well-being of its people. Observing the activity of staff, employees, participants, trades workers and others at the Handke School in past years, convinces us that it is a shining example of a school district doing the right thing, consistently, over the many, many years, from when it was the Elk River High School, to its current multi-function service center of all programs pertaining to community education. Personally, for one small example, two grandchildren had impressive early learning at its Magnet School programs up to now, when as senior citizens my wife and I have gained from the Active Minds programs recently launched, and Weight Watchers programs on Saturday mornings. Wise decisions seem to have been made to invest precious school funds in updating this old building. Landscaping this summer has restored its front to a stunning picture of a venerable, yet modernized, traditional school structure, in the heart of the city of Elk River. Inside, it is light, airy, clean and fresh, a delight to visit or to attend functions that one chooses. Its former playground is a parking lot that is almost always bursting at its seams with the vehicles of those in its programs. Congratulations to all those who have built this wonderful contribution to the life of this community, especially its current director, Charlie Blesner. This is government at its finest, and our nation needs more like it. — Don Strei, Elk River