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Gundersen, Boys and Girls Club to help with Hamilton Elementary Expansion



On a unanimous vote, the La Crosse School Board approved a $6.3 million expansion of Hamilton Elementary School on Monday night.

The funding will come from the district, City of La Crosse, Gundersen Health System and Boys and Girls Club of Greater La Crosse.

Superintendent Randy Nelson thinks more than just the students will benefit.

“It’s a commitment to the neighborhood, it’s a commitment to the families, and it’s a commitment to the businesses and institutions that are in that neighborhood,” Nelson said.

Gundersen CEO Scott Rathgaber said the new building is only as good as it’s people, which he thinks are top notch.

“A building is a wonderful tool to bring a mission to fruition,” Rathgaber said. “You have such high-quality people in that school that are so committed, it’s just great you’re going to bring the tool up to the level of their excellence and commitment.”

The Boys and Girls Club of Greater La Crosse will also be expanding its after school services, saying it’s a school they see an extra need for.

“In working with the Hamilton youth we see a great need for a little extra support for the Hamilton kids and students in SOTA 1,” Nicole Brie, development director with the club said. “These kids really deserve quality programming during the school day as well as after school.”

Plans include a new gymnasium, a new media center and more class space.

According to Nelson, they’ve been discussing those plans for at least three years.

Construction on the 16,000-square-foot expansion should be completed before the start of the 2021 school year.

Born in Decorah Iowa. I've been a news reporter for the last 10 years, starting right out of college in Fort Dodge, Iowa. Other professional opportunities led me to Marshalltown, Iowa and Antigo Wisconsin, before I finally was afforded the opportunity here in La Crosse. I've been here since 2016. I also act as the voice of local sports, doing play by play of high school and college football and basketball. When not working I enjoy golfing.

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