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Watch WisconsinEye back to school dialogue with K-12 legislative leaders

WisconsinEye recently sat down with key state legislative leaders on K-12 education to discuss a variety of issues as we begin the new school year.  State Senators Luther Olsen (R-Ripon) & Chris Larson (D-Milwaukee) and State Reps. Jeremy Thiesfeldt (R-Fond du Lac) & Sondy Pope (D-Mt. Horeb) sat down with Steve Walters to discuss a variety of topics including the state budget, school funding challenges, school vouchers, charter schools and more.

Access the full video here.

JFC action ups voucher payments, open enrollment transfer amounts

While increases in allowable spending for nearly all public schools will be capped at $200 per pupil in 2019-20 and $204 per pupil in 2020-21,  private schools that participate in the state’s voucher programs will see their voucher payments increase by an estimated $229 per pupil in 2019-20 and an estimated $275 per pupil in 2020-21 under the omnibus K-12 education budget motion adopted by the Joint Finance Committee (JFC) on May 23.

The JFC rejected the governor’s proposal to limit annual adjustments in voucher payments to the combination of the per pupil increase, if any, in revenue limits in that school year and in the per pupil increase in per pupil categorical aid paid to school districts between the previous school year and the current school year.  Under that proposal, the increase in voucher payments would have been limited to the same $200 and $204 per pupil increases public schools will receive. (more…)

JFC sets vote on K-12 funding for Thursday, May 23

The Joint Committee on Finance (JFC) will meet in Executive Session to vote on K-12 education funding in the 2019-21 state budget on Thursday, May 23, 2019, at 11:00 a.m.  The meeting will be held in Room 412 East, State Capitol.  View meeting notice.

The committee will work from budget papers (see below) prepared by the non-partisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau (LFB).  Those budget papers deal with specific subjects–e.g., revenue limit adjustments,  per pupil categorical aid, special education categorical aid, etc.  The budget papers provide background information and typically lay out a series of alternatives for the committee to consider on each topic. (more…)

Voucher transparency draft circulated for lawmaker support

A bill draft currently being circulated among state legislators would allow them to sign on (as a co-author) and support legislation that would provide information on property tax bills relating to state aid deductions from public school districts to fund vouchers.  The draft bill is being circulated by state Senator Chris Larson (D-Milwaukee), state Representatives Jodi Emerson (D-Eau Claire) and Robyn Vining (D-Wauwatosa).

Based on our member-approved resolutions, the WASB supports this bill and encourages you to contact your state lawmakers and ask them to sign on to LRB 2897.  (more…)