Fidel Verdin sits in front of the Villard Public Library's "North Milwaukee," sign.
Olivia Richardson

As part of Black History Month, kids in Milwaukee are learning about the history of hip-hop and how they can still be involved in the culture if they want. 

A group of high school kids met inside Villard Square public library on Milwaukee’s north side earlier this week.

Fidel Verdin handed out papers and pencils so they could take notes. The kids have their heads down, they're a little quiet, but they're engaged as Verdin gives a presentation on the history of hip-hop — a form of music and dance that he says started in the U.S. in 1973.

AZP Worldwide / stock.adobe.com

Wisconsin health officials say a second child has died from the flu this winter, and there's been a big rise this week in flu-related hospitalizations.

The Department of Health Services says it also still regards the coronavirus as a very serious matter despite no new additional cases of that reported in Wisconsin. Also, officials say the coronavirus diagnostic test kits the state received from the Centers for Disease Control are flawed.

Flu in Wisconsin

Maria_Savenko / stock.adobe.com

If you post about this year's elections on a blog or on social media like Facebook, you may wind up being a tiny part of new Milwaukee-based study. Researchers at UWM and Marquette University hope to use data science to learn more about voter priorities.

Political polls, usually done by telephone, already tell us some things about potential voters. But UW-Milwaukee marketing professor Purush Papatla says polls have shortcomings.

"Polling can only done at certain times. And, polling takes time to get the data back, and analyze and find the results," Papatla said.

Alesandra Tejeda

The spring primary election is on Feb. 18. One of the biggest races on the ballot is for Milwaukee County executive. Chris Abele announced last October that he's not seeking reelection after holding the post since 2011.


Students who disrupt campus speeches and presentations would be punished under a bill the Wisconsin Assembly passed on Tuesday. It now goes to the state Senate. Under the measure, students who disrupt speeches on UW System and technical college campuses twice would be suspended. Third-time offenders would be expelled.

Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction

In honor of Black History Month, we're highlighting several black women who are making history in their roles and industries here in Wisconsin. The series is called Black Women Firsts.

In the first installment, we hear from Carolyn Stanford Taylor, the first black woman to lead Wisconsin's Department of Public Instruction. She was appointed by Gov. Tony Evers at the beginning of 2019, and previously served as assistant state superintendent.

Angelina Mosher Salazar

Updated Thursday at 1:56 p.m. CT

Milwaukee's mayoral primary election is a week away. Incumbent Tom Barrett delivered his State of the City address Monday morning, laying out his track record to a packed ballroom at the Potawatomi Hotel and Casino.

The mayor’s address mostly hailed the positive accomplishments of the city — starting with Milwaukee’s successful bid to host the Democratic National Convention.

"For the first time in the history of the state of Wisconsin, we are hosting a major national political convention," Barrett said.

Susan Bence

An estimated 900,000 Wisconsin households rely on private wells for drinking water. It seems with every passing day, we learn wells are being impacted by contaminants — from manure to PFAS — putting families’ health at risk. Some people feel there's not enough support when they have to deal with a contaminated well.

READ: PFAS Concern Remains High In Marinette

Maayan Silver

The political parties are doing everything they can to court voters in swing-state Wisconsin, and this includes a GOP first: a campaign office in Milwaukee.

The Wisconsin Republican Party ventured into Democratic territory Thursday, opening its first-ever campaign office near Milwaukee’s central city. About 75 people attended the grand opening in the historic Bronzeville neighborhood.

President Trump narrowly won Wisconsin in 2016, and the state is viewed as a battleground this year. Republican organizers say they’re hoping to woo black voters.   

Emily Files

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers is trying again to increase state support of schools. This time, by calling a special session for Feb. 11 on the topic. But the proposal appears to be dead on arrival with Republican leadership.  

Evers wants to use $250 million of an expected budget surplus to restore the state’s commitment to funding two-thirds of K-12 education costs.

Bill Ingalls / NASA

A rocket scheduled to go to the International Space Station on Sunday will carry a Wisconsin experiment that could help in the fight against bacteria that resist antibiotics. The research may also assist future astronauts and other space travelers.  

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Updated Feb. 5, 2020, at 5:06 p.m. CT

Democratic Gov. Tony Evers signed a Republican-authored bill Wednesday that imposes new restrictions on firefighting foam to curb pollution from PFAS chemicals.  

The bill prohibits the use of foam containing intentionally added PFAS except in emergency fire situations. Firefighters will have to train with foam or other substances that don't contain the chemicals.

Emily Files

Wisconsin now has its first dyslexia-specific law on the books — giving hope to advocates who’ve been fighting for greater recognition of the common learning disability.

Act 86 calls for the creation of a dyslexia guidebook for school districts. Gov. Tony Evers signed the bill into law Wednesday morning, tying it to Wisconsin’s push to improve students’ reading abilities.

David McNew / Getty Images

Updated on Friday at 4:55 p.m. CT

Wisconsin health officials reported on Friday that the number of confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus in the state remains at one.

Officials say the female Dane County resident, who is infected, is doing well, but remains in isolation at home.

On Thursday, the state said the number of potential cases investigated has gone up to 14. But eight test results have come back negative. Results on the other five Wisconsin individuals who have been tested for the virus may be available by the middle of next week.

Teran Powell

African American men and women in the armed forces, past and present, are being honored in a new mural at the Milwaukee County War Memorial Center. It’s the first work dedicated to black veterans in the war memorial’s 62-year history.

Dozens of veterans, military families, and others gathered for the mural’s unveiling on Monday.