I cover education issues for the West Central Tribune and have worked for the paper since 1995. I have worked in journalism since 1981.
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WILLMAR -- Hector Pinochet of Willmar was in Santiago, Chile, when an enormous earthquake shook the ground for 3½ minutes in the early morning of Feb. 27. Pinochet, pastor at the Asemblea de Dios Espana in Willmar, saw the devastation all around him and spent the next month working to help people who had lost homes and loved ones.
WILLMAR -- The Minnesota Department of Transportation will conduct a prescribed burn of a wetland along Highway 23 southwest of Spicer today. The burn is scheduled for late morning or early afternoon. Prescribed burning is a procedure used to promote the growth and seed production of native prairie species and to reduce the growth of undesirable species. The wetland is located near the junction of Highway 23 and Kandiyohi County Road 127.
WILLMAR -- One in five teens will receive some sort of inappropriate content online this year. It's parents' job to teach their children how to handle such encounters with strangers on the Internet, Willmar Police Officer Marilee Dorn said Friday. Dorn spoke at the Child Guide Community Connections gathering at Kennedy Elementary School. Summer presents a variety of safety challenges for parents and their children, Dorn said. She talk-ed about physical sa-fety as well as Internet use.
The Minnesota Supreme Court has ruled that the Willmar School District may make warranty claims in arbitration for shoddy work done on the roof of Willmar Senior High.
PAYNESVILLE -- School bus routes and traffic flow will be concerns during construction of the Minnesota Highway 23 bypass around Paynesville. However, many of the people at a construction open house Tuesday are anxious to see work begin. Construction on Highway 23 is expected to begin April 26 and last through August 2012.
WILLMAR -- The Renville County West School District is working on selling its building in Sacred Heart and has even advertised it on eBay. Superintendent Lance Bagstad provided an update to the School Board Monday. "We've had 2,744 views," he said of the school's eBay posting, and 67 people have put it on their watch lists. Bagstad the district is anxious to sell the building but is also being cautious about its buyers. "I have fielded e-mails from all over the country," he said.
WILLMAR -- Willmar School District voters may be asked to raise their taxes to help out their schools. The Willmar School Board started talking about an operating levy referendum at its Monday meeting. A final decision could be made at the board's June 14 meeting. Superintendent Jerry Kjergaard said he wanted to wait until June to see what the Legislature does with school funding.
WILLMAR -- Change could be coming to the Willmar Community Center. Two Ridgewater College students presented a marketing plan to the center's board this week, part of the community service requirement in their Marketing Trends class.
WILLMAR -- A 36-year-old Willmar man made his first court appearance Friday morning on a felony charge of first-degree sale of a controlled substance. Earl Hoting is accused of making two sales of methamphetamine to an informant for the CEE-VI Drug Task Force last year.
KMS students hear first-hand account of Holocaust from Ohio man who survived it Face to face with Dr. Joseph Mengele, Joe Klein gave the right answer. Can you work, Mengele asked, as he looked at the tall 15-year-old. Yes, the boy said. With that answer, Klein was told to go to the right, while his mother and two sisters, one of them carrying her 3-month-old baby, were sent to the left.