WISCONSIN NEWS ROUNDUP: Pierce one of nine counties under a heat advisory
Wisconsin can expect one more day of warm, humid weather before a cold front moves in and cools things down. The northwest was the state’s hot spot yesterday, with highs in the 90’s in some places. The mercury hit 92 near Grantsburg in Burnett County. It’s a sticky morning throughout the state, with temperatures in the 60’s-and-70’s and humidities above 80-percent in most places. It was 75 in La Crosse at five a-m. The National Weather Service has posted a heat advisory for nine counties in the northwest from noon-to-seven today. Those counties are Eau Claire, Chippewa, Dunn, Pepin, Pierce, Saint Croix, Polk, Barron, and Rusk. Forecasters say the heat index could hit 101 in those areas. All of Wisconsin could see 90 today before the cold front brings showers and thunderstorms to the region tonight. Some of those storms could be severe. Once they clear out, a much cooler day is predicted for tomorrow with highs around 80. Dry weather is expected until Saturday, when storms could return generally in the northern half of Wisconsin. Another warm-up is forecast for Sunday, when some areas could see 90 degrees again.
Wisconsin’s milk production rose by almost three-percent in July, compared to the same month a year ago. The Badger State produced almost two-and-a-third billion pounds of milk last month, with a year-to-year increase of almost three times the national jump of one-point-one percent. Wisconsin also made another gain on top-producing California, which posted a three-and-a-half percent decline in its milk production compared to the year before. The Golden State produced three-and-three-eighths billion pounds in July – the only state with a bigger output than Wisconsin. All but of five of the nation’s 23 major dairy states saw increases in July. Arizona, Idaho, and Oregon joined California in having decreases. Utah was unchanged.
This year’s Wisconsin high school graduates tied with Iowa for the nation’s second-highest score on the A-C-T college entrance exam. Neighboring Minnesota had the top score among states where more than half of all students took the A-C-T. The Top-three states had identical rankings a year ago. Minnesota students averaged 23-of-a-possible-36. Wisconsin averaged 22-point-one – same as a year ago, which was the lowest since 1996. One reason for the lower average is that more youngsters are taking the A-C-T exam, even if they don’t plan to go to college. Seventy-one percent of Wisconsin students took the test a year ago. Milwaukee and a number of other school districts started making students take the A-C-T over the past several years. It will be a statewide requirement starting in the fall of 2014. Almost three-fourths of this year’s Wisconsin high school grads took a core curriculum recommended by the A-C-T. It includes four years of English and three years each of math, social studies, and science. The A-C-T is the predominant college entrance exam in the nation’s mid-section. The S-A-T exam is more prominent on both coasts.
For most college freshmen, a tablet is not a pill you take – a chat seldom involves talking with somebody – and G-M is food that’s genetically-modified. Those are among the 60 items on this year’s Beloit College Mind-set list, which helps teachers communicate better with their students. The list has been put together each August since 1998, and Beloit College says more than a million people go on line to view it. Speaking of computers, this year’s college freshmen believe that we’ve always been able to plug into U-S-B ports – and the C-D players in their parents’ cars are so ancient. The Mindset List has had both its imitators and its critics. Inside Higher Ed says a school in Australia has emulated the Beloit College list. Daniel D’Addario wrote on Salon-Dot-Com that the Mindset List is not all that relevant because it contains mainly bad puns about technology, products college freshmen have never seen, random events which have always been the case for young adults, and people who’ve always been dead or famous to them. Beloit English professor Tom McBride says it’s a relevant list that millions look forward to each year – and he enjoys debating the subject with critics. McBride and Ron Nief came up with the idea for the Mindset List. And, oh yes – for college students born in 1995, Mickey Mantle, Jerry Garcia, and Dean Martin have always been dead.