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Transportation, sports among concerns over upcoming La Crosse school referendum on consolidation

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The plan to combine the two La Crosse high schools into one south-side school is up for debate at public meetings again this week.

In a virtual session Wednesday night, Superintendent, Dr. Aaron Engel, was confident that north-side students now attending Logan High School would want to stay in La Crosse, instead of switching to Onalaska — if Logan and Central High merged at the former Trane headquarters.

“Generally speaking, students start with their friends in elementary school, at their local school in their neighborhood, ” Engel said. “They go to middle school together, they want to continue on in high school, as well.”

Many parents oppose the idea of a far south-side school, because it would mean extra travel time for students.

Engel says bus service would be offered to Logan students. He said a typical bus ride from north La Crosse could last 20 to 25 minutes.

The future of high school sports could also change a bit if the consolidation plan passes through a $194.7 million referendum.

Engel said football games would probably be played at Logan’s current home site, Swanson Field.

The goal is to “continue to bring folks to the north side, to see football games, track meets, soccer games on that field,” Engel said. “We would need some modest improvements there. We need to replace the bleachers, and expand the track to eight lanes to host full track competitions.”

The superintendent added that a combined high school would probably move to a higher division for sports, and into a conference with Eau Claire schools.

Another meeting on the referendum plan is set for 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Longfellow Middle School.

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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1 Comment

  1. James Arntson

    August 25, 2022 at 10:44 pm

    Mr. Engel you have no clue on the traffic in LaCrosse! 1020pm google maps says it will take me 14 minutes to get to Pammel Creek Road. Thats nonstop with no traffic!!
    A bus driver is NOT going get the first child picked up and taken to southside in 20 or 25 minutes. If he stops 15 or 20 times at 7am, with the traffic the first child picked up will be on that bus for an hour or more.
    Im just north of George and Gillette streets on the north side. Kids live farther north than I.
    I went to Central 40 years ago. My son went to Logan 6 years ago. If he were still in school. Going south would not be an option. Onalaska, Holmen, or West Salem would be our choices.
    Logan and Central are rivals, competing against each forever!
    Leave it be!
    They, the kids do not want this!

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