La Crosse School leaders welcome students back for new school year

After year of online and hybrid learning, La Crosse school staff thankful to have students back this fall

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) – Wednesday is the first day of school for many children across the Coulee Region. This fall semester is a drastic difference from where districts were just a year ago with many students learning virtually. Some school districts elected to go in person, and then the hybrid model. Teachers welcomed children back to classrooms Wednesday.

School buses took off bright and early Wednesday morning to pick up children and drop them off for their first day of school. Leaders with the La Crosse School District say they’re excited to have students back. Virtually learning was difficult for so many families last year. Superintendent Aaron Engel said he is excited to start in person this year.

He said it’s important for kids to be in the classroom and learning with their teachers, especially the younger kids. There are several things families have to keep in mind. COVID-19 is still spreading in the community with the Delta variant.

Officials are taking every precaution necessary in order to keep kids safe. Masking and social distancing are things teachers and staff will continue throughout the school year. The goal is to keep kids in school all year. Engel said he’s confident students will stay in person this year.

“We were able to run school when we had some pretty high case rates last year successfully in person in the spring semester,” Engel said. “I hope things continue a downward trajectory in the near future, but regardless we think that we can successfully do in-person school almost no matter what happens.”

Go Riteway in La Crosse has a new app for parents to try. It’s called “Here Comes the Bus”. This allows parents to track their child’s bus in real-time. Here are the instructions to set up this service.

(Information sent to parents August 2021)

Here Comes the Bus is a free app that enables parents to:
• See the location of your child’s bus both before and after school
• Confirm that your child’s bus has arrived at the bus stop, at school or both
• Receive a push notification* or email message when the bus is near your stop, has been substituted,
or when we have important information to relay
Here Comes the Bus is powered by Synovia Solutions™, makers of the GPS-tracking technology used by
School District of La Crosse and Go Riteway to increase safety and cost savings as it relates to our
school bus fleet.
Available in three languages (English, Spanish and French), the Here Comes the Bus app can be
downloaded from the App Store or Google Play.
To sign up or to learn more about Here Comes the Bus, visit
Should you have any questions, please contact Go Riteway at 608-881-6370
If you need to contact Here Comes the Bus customer support, please go to: and click on “Contact Support.” You will be asked to
provide the following information:
• Your name
• The School District of La Crosse ID Code – 87866
• Email address used for your Here Comes the Bus account
• Your child’s first and last name, and student ID number – Student ID can be found under Skyward Family
Access. Click the “Portfolio” tab on the left, then click the “Here Comes the Bus Report”, then a popup will
open where you can click on “View Report” to open the report with your child’s ID number on it.
• Description of the question

COVID-19 protocols vary for each school district in the region. Here is a list of schools and the links to their COVID-19 protocols and health guidelines.

Blair-Taylor School District – Boscobel School District – Caledonia School District – Cashton School District – Cochran-Fountain City School District 

De Soto School District  – Eau Claire School District – Eleva-Strum School District – Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau School District

Gilmanton School District – Hillsboro School District – Holmen School District – Houston School District – Independence School District

Ithica School District – Kickapoo School District – La Crescent School District – La Crosse School District  – Lansing (Allamakee) School District

Onalaska School District – Onalaska Luther – Osseo-Fairchild School District – Prairie Du Chien School District – Richland Center School District

Rushford-Peterson School district – Seneca School District – Sparta School District – Spring Grove School District – Tomah School District

Viroqua School District – Wauzeka-Stueben School District – Westby School District – West Salem School District – Whitehall School District – Winona School District