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Rep. Anne Neu and Sen. Mark Koran visited North Branch Area High School in October, observed the wonderful things happening here, and listened intently to the ways the state is failing public education. We are very grateful they were able to make time to get a first-hand look at the end prod…

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November is National Hospice Month, and for many people it’s also the beginning of the holiday season when extended families gather to celebrate. These gatherings often include updates and discussions about caring for loved ones who are no longer able to care for themselves. This is when it …

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On the 11th day of the 11th month, we pay a special tribute to our veterans – honoring those who served in every war since our nation was founded. Whether it was the beaches of Normandy, the hills of Korea, the mountains of Afghanistan, the deserts of Iraq, or right here at home – these extr…

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Most of the time as of late, the various city councils I cover are pretty benign in their voting. There seems to be a relative unity with these councils, which results in frequent unanimous votes. Every once in a while, though, a topic comes up that does result in a split 3-2 vote or even in…

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Last week I had what I call a “Sheldon Cooper” vacation. Fans of “The Big Bang Theory” will remember that on one or two of the episodes, Sheldon was required to use up some of his vacation time, much to his chagrin.

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Once again the Perfect 10 event, the North Branch Area Education Foundation’s (NBAEF) primary fundraising event for the year, was an unqualified success! It was a wonderful event full of laughter, entertainment, and of course, raising money to enhance the education of students at North Branc…

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As the trees lose their beautiful fall leaves, they tend to pile up in our yards and streets. Those leaves contain phosphorus, an essential nutrient for plant growth. As the leaves decompose, they release the phosphorus that was bound up in the leaf. When it rains, the phosphorus is washed d…

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Question:  I have a rather random, but seasonally appropriate question: with harvest season upon us and with slow-moving farm vehicles/implements on roadways, is it permissible to pass a slow-moving farm implement on Minnesota highways in a delineated no-passing zone? If passing is prohibite…

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Last fall, with the input of staff, students, families and community members, North Branch Area Public Schools released its Continuous Improvement Plan (CIP) for 2018-20. The two-year CIP replaced the district’s typical strategic plans, which were five-year roadmaps.

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In 1492, he sailed the oceans blue. We will observe Columbus Day this coming Monday as the day Christopher Columbus discovered the New World on Oct. 12, 1492. 

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When I got the phone call from Cambridge city administrator Lynda Woulfe about the death of Marlys Palmer, it was quite the shock. While it was no secret she was getting up there in years, her energy and enthusiasm were still very high.

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Last Friday, Sept. 27, North Branch Area Public Schools hosted a professional development day for all staff. My deepest gratitude goes to Director of Teaching and Learning David Treichel, district Staff Development Coordinator Carolyn Slater, and all the staff that assisted them in putting t…

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“So you want to be a cowboy, well, you know it’s more than just a ride. Guess you got to know the real thing, if you want to know the other side. Ain’t nobody riding shotgun in the world tonight. And when you spit, you better mean it. You got to make ‘em all believe it if you’re gonna be the one.”

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It was with great pride that staff at North Branch Area Public Schools welcomed community members inside our schools for a first look at many of the improvements made possible by the May 23, 2017, referendum. The middle school, high school, and Sunrise were all open and available for visitor…

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Recently, I was talking with a group of readers about the performance of the Star and how we can make it even better. During that conversation, the question was asked about contributing press releases or even ideas for possible stories. 

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Recently, I saw a Twitter feed asking people to make the most “un-Minnesotan” statement. The answers were some of the typical not liking hot dish, calling pop “soda” or “coke,” among others.

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Last Wednesday school district leadership met for its annual administrative retreat to plan for the upcoming school year and launch new initiatives. It was an inspiring gathering of individuals dedicated to, and passionate about, educating kids and preparing them for life as an adult.

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As I was sitting and contemplating writing my next outdoor article with Max, my black lab, and constant outdoor walking partner, it occurred to me that the world is just getting overwhelmed with so much negative news that something needs to be written about all the great things we have to be…