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Legislative Update

May 11 legislative session K-12 recap

by | May 12, 2021 | Legislative Update Blog, State Issue | 0 comments

Both houses of the Wisconsin Legislature (Senate & Assembly) were in session Tuesday, May 11 and acted on a number of K-12-related bills.

The Assembly had scheduled override votes of two bills vetoed by the governor–Assembly Bill 23 (vaccine mandates) & Assembly Bill 24 (houses of worship)–but did not vote on either, presumably because they did not have the required votes (2/3 of the chamber).

Passed Senate & Assembly

Senate Bill 51 (Sen. Cowles) Relating to: qualification of newspapers to receive compensation for publication of legal notices and requirements relating to publication. WASB Position: Monitoring.

Senate Bill 52 (Sen. Stroebel) Relating to: public notice of noncandidacy for incumbent local elected officials. If an incumbent board member files a notification of noncandidacy or fails to file a declaration of candidacy, notice of that fact must be posted on the district’s Internet site. WASB Position: Monitoring.   

Passed Senate

Senate Bill 235 (Sen. Bradley) Relating to: measuring a school district’s improvement for the school and school district accountability report. Voice Vote WASB Position: Support, Resolution 3.185

Senate Bill 238 (Sen. Jacque) Relating to: requiring each school board to post the child abuse and neglect reporting hotline number in school buildings. Voice Vote WASB Position: Monitoring.

Senate Bill 302 (Sen. Stroebel) Relating to: the department of public instruction’s waiver authority related to parental choice programs, the Special Needs Scholarship Program, and independent charter schools. Voice Vote WASB Position: Neutral. This is a technical bill supported by the DPI.

Passed Assembly

Assembly Bill 59 (Rep. Dittrich) Relating to: Open Enrollment and Income Eligibility for the Statewide Voucher Program. Passed 60-36 WASB Position: Oppose, Resolutions 2.70, 3.77

  • Open Enrollment: This bill prohibits a resident school district from denying an open enrollment application for any reason and eliminates the current limit of three open enrollment applications during the 2020-21 and 2021-22 school years. If more students use the changes made here to open enroll, the positive/negative impacts felt by districts regarding open enrollment would be increased.
  • Statewide Voucher Program: For 2021-22 school year, this bill increases the family income eligibility requirement for the WPCP to a family income that is no more than 300% (from 220%) of the federal poverty level, which is the same as the Racine and Milwaukee Parental Choice Programs. The impact of more students being eligible and potentially participating in the program will likely be felt by property taxpayers (DPI fiscal estimate). 

Assembly Bill 226 (Rep. Kurtz) Relating to: required playing or singing of the national anthem at sporting events held in a venue constructed at least in part with public moneys. WASB Position: Monitoring

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