Greater La Crosse Boys and Girls Club prepared to open doors for virtual learners

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) — Rising COVID-19 cases and staffing shortages are putting a strain on school staff. This may have you wondering what to do with your child if your school suddenly goes back to virtual.

The Greater La Crosse Boys and Girls Club opened its doors for Logan Middle School students after the school  went virtual Thursday and Friday. Club CEO Jake Erickson said the club is prepared to adjust if other schools have to do the same.

“Parents need help, right? I mean, there are a lot of parents out there who are doing everything for their family, and might need just a safe place for their kids to go. And there’s kids who don’t have that structure at home,” Erickson said,

When schools shut their doors two years ago, some children felt behind, according to school officials. Community resources helped pick them back up.

“Before I started coming here, I was failing all my classes,” said Opal Cogburn, a Logan Middle student and Boys and Girls Club member. “My student teacher was a staff here, so if I didn’t understand anything she would just fill me in and the staff would help me a lot so I actually had passing grades.”

The club offered homework support and a chance to succeed for K-12 students.

“A lot of them needed that one-on-one support from our staff to do it. I think a lot of them wouldn’t have done the schoolwork if they wouldn’t have been at club,” said Jenna Anfang, area director of the Northside BGC.

But still, those staff shortages are hitting more than just the school districts.

“Doing everything we can, with our full-time staff stepping in to help at clubs, from board members to volunteers. Just doing everything we can with members of the community to make sure our services continue,” Erickson said.

Logan Middle plans to reopen on Monday. It is the only school in the La Crosse School District that recently has gone online.

La Crescent-Hokah School District will be online Monday through Friday next week.

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