Racine County Eye has expanded its coverage over the past six months. You have come to count on us for stories about our coverage of COVID-19, the elections, social justice issues, business spotlights, hometown heroes, and real estate.

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Take Our Poll Despited seeing improvements in its unemployment rate, Racine still topped the list with the highest unemployment rate in the state and Caledonia had the lowest unemployment rate. However, the employment outlook is starting to look better. Racine’s unemployment rate was 6.1 percent in Sept., a 1.7 percent decrease compared with the same period a year ago, according to the Department of Workforce Development. Wisconsin’s unemployment rate was 4.7 percent compared with 6.1 percent the same time last year. Employers from the private sector added 124,000 jobs. The number of people filing for unemployment for the first 40 weeks of 2014 and the annual average weekly unemployment claims are at the lowest point since 2000. Wisconsin’s labor force participation rate — the percentage of Wisconsin residents 16 and older that are in the labor force — has dropped from 74 percent in 1997 to 68 percent in 2014.

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In addition to our education features, we’ll be kicking off a series of stories highlighting how parents, students, and educators are adapting to the impact of COVID-19 on education. If this is important to you, please consider donating to our education reporting fund. https://business.facebook.com/donate/1846323118855149/3262802717172659/

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.