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La Crosse schools say COVID risk is too high to resume in-person classes now

Brad Williams

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No in-person classes for La Crosse public school students until January. 

That decision was announced this week, as the pandemic continues to surge in Wisconsin. 

Superintendent Aaron Engel said the risk of infection remains too great to bring students back to school in mid-November, as planned. 

“Case rates have never been higher in our community right now,” said Engel, adding, “it would be a significant risk to students, families, and our staff if we were back in person.”

But Engel added Thursday on La Crosse Talk PM that teachers have become quite creative in finding ways to run classes on-line, saying some teachers “have really figured out how to do smaller group activities, to engage in discussion.”    

Engel says some programs for students with special needs will still be taught in-person by law, and he said the continued delays are partly a failure of the state and federal governments to provide aid to communities and families during the pandemic. 

Jan. 18, the start of second semester, is now the day when in-person classes could resume in La Crosse schools.  

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.