EAGLE RIVER - The honors just keep coming for administrators in the Northland Pines School District.
District Administrator Mike Richie was named the nation's Superintendent of the Year last year.
Now, a Pines principal is claiming her own honor.
"The lights were out. I still had no clue," Northland Pines Middle School Principal Jackie Coghlan said.
Coghlan had no clue that she would be surprised by her students and staff Friday morning.
Being named Wisconsin's middle school Principal of the Year.
"Her dedication to the kids, her work over 15 years in this school, her relationship with her staff really make her stand out as an outstanding principal in Wisconsin," said Joseph Moylan, President, Association of Wisconsin School Administrators.
"I didn't do anything by myself. There were people who were involved with it. That's a reflection of the people that I work with," Coghlan said.
Fifteen years at one place is a long time.
But it's an enjoyable ride when you love your job, like Jackie Coghlan does.
"I like it, and I do, because I have staff that are dedicated, and I truly do, and they believe in some of the same things I believe in," Coghlan said.
Now, she'll head to Washington, DC, to be considered as the National Principal of the Year.
"The great honor of being Principal of the Year is really today. Getting to hear your kids, and the way they feel about you. Getting to hear your staff and the way that they feel about you, and that your work matters," Moylan said.
MADISON - Wisconsin Elections Commission staff plan to hire a half-dozen new employees and upgrade software to bolster election security.
The commission received a $7 million federal grant in March to upgrade security after Russian actors tried to access a state Department of Workforce Development system before the 2016 election.
Staff told the commission Thursday that the Department of Administration has approved hiring six new four-year security positions, including an information technology project manager, an elections security trainer and a voting systems specialist.
MADISON - The Wisconsin Elections Commission has agreed to lift overseas ballot restrictions to avoid a legal battle.
The U.S. Department of Justice warned earlier this month that it's preparing to sue because Wisconsin law doesn't let temporary overseas voters to obtain ballots electronically or to submit downloadable back-up ballots in case they don't have time to return an official ballot.
Federal law allows all overseas voters to obtain ballots electronically and submit back-up ballots. Assembly Republicans passed a bill that would have aligned Wisconsin's statutes with the federal law but the measure died in April after Senate Republicans added language limiting special legislative elections.
MERRILL - Three years ago, Lincoln County got good news.
The federal government planned to spend $1.5 million to help give rural parts of the county broadband internet access. It was part of Frontier Communications' agreement to accept $283 million for broadband expansion nationwide.
But then, the contractors, equipment, and better internet were slow to arrive.
Now, Frontier is finally at work, but plenty of people are still waiting anxiously for their high-speed connection.
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