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Superintendent candidate Gunderson checks out opening day at North Woods



America has a new president as of this week, but it’s already campaign season again in some places. 

Seven candidates are running for state school superintendent in Wisconsin, and West Salem’s Troy Gunderson is one of them. 

Visiting North Woods Elementary in La Crosse Wednesday, Gunderson told reporters he would like to see the state devote more resources to problems of race, poverty, and mental health, and he’d like more access to broadband.  

“There could be a renaissance in rural America,” said Gunderson, the former West Salem school superintendent.  “People are learning to work from home. They don’t need to live in Chicago to work in Chicago. They could live in Mindoro and work in Chicago.”

Gunderson met with reporters yesterday outside La Crosse’s North Woods School, where children were in the classroom for the first time in months.

Children in the lowest grades went back to school in La Crosse on Wednesday, after months away from the classroom because of COVID-19.

The higher grades are being phased back into buildings over the next three weeks.    

Gunderson said the kids are handling the COVID restrictions well, saying it’s “remarkable” how well they accept the social distancing rules, better than many adults.

Gunderson says students need to be back in classrooms, to be able to socialize with each other.  He’s hoping that the virus can be controlled enough by fall to return to more normal schooling.  

The primary for state superintendent on February 16th will narrow the field to two people for the April election.


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.

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