- Associated Press - Friday, October 30, 2015

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Elementary school students throughout Bismarck are coming to the aid of a school on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation that was damaged by a grass fire.

The Student Council at Bismarck’s Pioneer Elementary School organized a fundraiser, scheduled for next week, to benefit Cannon Ball Elementary, and after word spread more than half of the 17 public elementaries in the city decided to also take part, The Bismarck Tribune reported (https://bit.ly/1Ri0M4k ).

“We’re neighbors to them,” said Pioneer Student President Grant Oakland, a fourth-grader. Bismarck is about 30 miles north of the reservation’s northern border.

Students will be allowed to wear hats next Friday in exchange for a donation. The money will go toward a new playground. The Oct. 11 blaze on the Dakotas reservation melted Cannon Ball’s playground equipment and filled the school with smoke and soot.

Students at Pioneer attended an assembly Thursday to watch a video showing the melted slides and charred playground. A Cannon Ball employee shot the video with the help of several students there.

“I was amazed something could happen like that with that much damage,” said Pioneer Student Vice President Jericah Haptonstall, a fifth-grader.

The 120 students at Cannon Ball have been attending classes in nearby Solen during cleanup and repairs but are expected to return to their own school on Monday.

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Information from: Bismarck Tribune, https://www.bismarcktribune.com

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