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Editorial: RMS-RES partnership is good for students

There is a lot to like about a new program that has recruited Rosemount Middle School eighth graders to help second graders at Rosemount Elementary School improve their reading skills.

First, and most important, is the fact the partnership exists at all. It makes a lot of sense. RES and RMS share a campus. That proximity should allow for any number of opportunities for collaboration.

Even more interesting, though, is middle school students who are involved. They're not necessarily the students who are at the top of their class. They're students who maybe came to RMS with some ground to make up. But they've put in the work over the years. They've gotten their grades up and they've kept them up. That's not an easy thing to do, and the effort is worth recognizing.

It's fun to watch students who have discovered the value of a good education passing that information on to younger students who no doubt look up to them. Anthony Knott, one of two RMS students who made the walk across the parking lot after lunch Tuesday, said he enjoyed working with the RES students because he knew what it was like to struggle with reading. He liked being able to help. And while he could have been playing kickball with his classmates during activity time at RMS, he considered the time he was spending at RES a reward for the hard work he put in.

That says something about the lessons he's learned in three years at RMS.

Maranda Burger, the other RMS student tutoring Tuesday at RES, talked about how good it felt to be a role model. It's a pretty big deal for someone who's not yet old enough to drive to understand she can serve as an example for a younger student.

We're excited by this program. And we're proud of the students who have gotten involved. They're learning things in school that go well beyond the books they're reading.