The high school I went to is still there and as strong as ever. Ol' EHS, Edgerton Minnesota Public High School.

In the zillion years since I graduated (okay, not a zillion but close) they've renovated, remodeled, and built on. Not bad for a school in a town of about 1,000 people. In fact, the Christian school is still there too, and doing well.

But that isn't always the case. Many small towns have been hit by the dreaded 'C' word.

Consolidation.

In fact, 'back in the day' when I was in High School, we played in what was then called the 'Tri-County Conference' in basketball, football, and other sports. Looking back at the schools we played, well, hmmm....

Magnolia? Nope, High School closed. Jasper? No more Quartzsiters. Chandler? Nope, they consolidated with Lake Wilson, another school we played. Oh, and then Chandler-Lake Wilson closed, too. There was Hills and there was Beaver Creek, but they consolidated and left Beaver Creek without a High School.

I know there's a lot of reasons for school consolidation, the main being economic. It gets tougher and tougher to keep a small-town school open and then one day...poof!...no more high school there. Maybe a grade school, maybe not.

God Bless the small-town schools. What a great gathering place for the community on Tuesday and Friday nights (at least in my day!) for basketball games. Friday night football, choir, bands, and many other activities that a community could gather for and bond at. Now, so many gone.

What do they call it? I forget...wait...oh yeah. Progress. Look around your small town or the one you grew up in. All the school's still there? Heck, how many of the people are still there?

Necessary? I guess. But to the old, bald skinny guy, sad, too.

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