Wisconsin

"What to Expect When You're Expecting Budget Cuts"

Wisconsin Superintendent Tony Evers met with educators, students, parents, and community members in Milwaukee to discuss “what to expect when you’re expecting more budget cuts.” He stressed the "three R's of fair funding" (reinvesting, reforming and restoring) and said that until the state prioritizes children and begins reinvesting in their education, the economy will remain sluggish.

The following post was written by Thomas Beebe, Project Manager for Opportunity to Learn - Wisconsin. The post was originally published on the Wisconsin Alliance for Excellent Schools website, and is reprinted here with his permission. 

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Department of Public Instruction Superintendent Tony Evers was in Milwaukee, Sept. 26, to discuss with educators, students, parents, and community members “what to expect when you’re expecting more budget cuts.”

State: 

Gov. Walker on facts: Truth-O-Meter Says 'False'

Thomas Beebe, Executive Director of Wisconsin Alliance for Excellent Schools

The simple fact is that as a result of Walker’s budget, Wisconsin is in a situation where, for the first time ever, the quality of the state’s schools will be worse for current and future generations of students than it was for the generation that preceded them.

Two very different stories have been duking it out in Wisconsin newspaper articles, editorial pages and airwaves in the aftermath of Gov. Scott Walker’s $1.6 billion cut to the state’s public schools.

In one corner is Walker himself. Reacting to suggestions that the quality of the state’s public schools will be hurt by the largest cut to education in the state’s history, Walker has defied logic by repeatedly saying that Wisconsin schools will be "the same or better" as a result of the cuts.

State: 

The other shoe just dropped

Thomas Beebe, Executive Director, Wisconsin Alliance for Excellent Schools

Since the passage of the state budget, many in Wisconsin have wondered what impact a $1.6 billion cut would mean for schools and students. Now we know. The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction recently released data that show clearly how the budget has had a huge negative impact on the state's schools.

Since the passage of the state budget, many in Wisconsin have wondered what impact a $1.6 billion cut would mean for our schools and students.

Now we know.

State: 

Lost Opportunity 50 State Report

Publication Date: 
Wed, 2009-09-23
Type: 
reports

In Lost Opportunity: A 50 State Report on the Opportunity to Learn in America, the Schott Foundation for Public Education establishes a metric for determining the opportunity to learn for students. Providing a state-by-state comparison of both academic proficiency (percentage of students scoring at or above proficient on the eighth grade NAEP reading exam) and equity (as measured by the Schott Foundation’s Opportunity to Learn Index, or OTLI), Lost Opportunity identifies the four baseline minimum resources that are necessary for a child – regardless of race, ethnicity, or socioeconomic status – to have a fair and substantive Opportunity to Learn.

In the United States, every student should have the equal right to a high-quality education.  But as our most recent data demonstrates, for far too many students, quality and equity are aspirations, not realities.  Few states are providing public school educations that result in academic proficiency for students.  And even fewer states are providing access to a high-quality education to all students, particularly those from historically disadvantaged groups.

School District Takeovers: Bad for Students, Bad for Democracy

by John H. Jackson, President & CEO, Schott Foundation for Public Education

Concerns about the importance and need to mobilize Black and Latino voters in 2016 and future elections have reached a fever pitch. But in many states and cities there are counterproductive disenfranchisement actions being taken that disempower Black and Latino communities -- the takeover of their public schools. In this attack on democracy, governance by locally elected school boards is stripped away altogether. This dismantling of democracy in predominantly poor communities and communities of color is now underway, or being proposed, in several states. Denying these citizens' right to elect local school boards through state takeovers or mayoral control should sound the same alarm as denying them the vote because the impact of the action minimizes their democratic voice and vote.

Community members at a rally in Milwaukee, February 17, 2016. Photos taken by @NoMPSTakeover.

Is school funding fair? For too many students, the answer is still no.

Since 2010, the Education Law Center has published national report cards on how states are (or aren't) investing in their schools and students. "Is School Funding Fair? A National Report Card" released Wednesday, paints a worrying picture. In most states, ELC has found that public funding for schools is both unfair and inequitable: that is, not only are schools not receiving the funds they need, the schools that need funding the most are the ones with the most dramatic shortfalls.

WI Should Invest Surplus in Kids

By Tom Beebe, Opportunity to Learn - Wisconsin

Policymakers in Wisconsin should use the projected budget surplus $900 million to invest in schools and students and make up for years of budget cuts.

Wisconsin has a $900 million budget surplus.

In part, and in one of the great injustices in state history, it was built on the backs of over 800,000 children in our public schools.

The moral and equitable thing to do is begin fixing the damage that was done to our public schools and at least make a down-payment on the cuts of the past.

State: 

Ed Researcher on WI Speaking Tour About Impact of Vouchers

Tom Beebe, Opportunity to Learn – Wisconsin

Nationally recognized researcher and academic Devon Carlson will be in Wisconsin in November on a week-long tour to talk about the impact on students, schools, and communities of using public tax dollars for private schools — better known as the voucher program.

Nationally recognized researcher and academic Devon Carlson will be in Wisconsin in November on a week-long tour to talk about the impact on students, schools, and communities of using public tax dollars for private schools — better known as the voucher program.

Milwaukee's March for Public Education

By Tom Beebe, Opportunity to Learn – Wisconsin

One thousand public education advocates from across Wisconsin gathered in Milwaukee on Sept. 21 for the second “Public Education is a Civil Right March and Rally.”

Around 1000 public education advocates from across Wisconsin gathered in Milwaukee on Sept. 21 for the second “Public Education is a Civil Right March and Rally.”

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