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Teachers and students at Summit Elementary School recieved special surprises this morning. Members of the La Crosse Public Education Foundation Board of Directors handed out classroom innovation grant checks to winning teachers.
Three teachers at Summit received grants along with 21 other teachers from throughout the district.
This year the foundation awarded $42 thousand to teachers in the School District of La Crosse.
First, it was vacant positions in the La Crosse fire department that were desperately needed to get filled. Then it was the police department. But should those vacancies remain.....vacant? That's what city council president, Audrey Kader and mayor Matt Harter are hoping to determine with the help of a consultant. Kader and Harter, almost never on the same side of any issue, are pushing a proposal for a consultant to study both fire and police needs in the city. Although the mayor has made it clear he thinks both departments can do more with less, he's also advocated for an evaluation of both. Meanwhile, Kader says she's simply unsure what the ideal staffing requirements for either department are. The council will vote on the consultant proposal next month.
It's a little unclear now if a La Crosse council district will have any representation before April. The council whiffed on appointing a temporary member this week because the top two candidates were unable to secure a majority vote. Richard Staff managed to get eight votes, former council member Jim Bloedorn collected seven. And, with one council member abstaining, the meeting was adjourned with the seventh district in the same position it was when Mike Larsen resigned; without a representative voice. With candidates already taking out papers for spring elections, it seems a little unlikely that the council will take another stab at a temporary appointment.
Many people who attended mass Thursday at the cathedral in La Crosse have become used to seeing Raymond Burke at the altar, conducting the service.
Burke was back at St. Joseph the Workman...but now wearing the hat of a cardinal:
This was a special mass of thanksgiving for the former Bishop of the La Crosse Diocese who became a cardinal last month. The ceremony had been arranged partly at the suggestion of the current Bishop of La Crosse, William Callahan.
Dozens of priests from throughout the region participated in the special mass honoring Burke.
Final tally for the big Red Cross fundraiser last month has come in. Even a little bigger than the previous eye-popping total of $80 thousand for Dancing With the La Crosse Stars. After counting up the last of the checks, the Red Cross says the event raised just shy of 84 thousand dollars. That's money the local Red Cross will use, among other things, to help families cope with the aftermath of tragedies like home fires. One of the dancing couples in this year's contest raised over 17 thousand dollars. Four couples in all raised over ten thousand dollars. This year's final tally dwarfs last year's total of just under fifty thousand.