Despite serious problems and a lack of research support, virtual schools continue to spread

Lawmakers throughout the nation continue to support the spread of virtual schools despite the fact that research reveals overwhelming evidence of poor performance, according to a new review by the National Education Policy Center. Given the evidence, the review recommends that policymakers slow or stop the growth in the number of virtual and blended schools and the size of their enrollments until the reasons for their relatively poor performance have been identified and addressed.

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Legislative Update – May 28

The Assembly Education Committee is holding hearings this week on several bills including ones that would open the door to more exceptions in special teacher licensing areas, change the way out-of-state teachers can be licensed to teach in Wisconsin, and prohibit schools from “lunch shaming” students whose families are not able to pay for lunch.

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Joint Finance Committee passes education budget that provides just a fraction of what Evers has requested

The Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee on Thursday voted – 11-4 along party lines – to advance an education budget providing a fraction of what Governor Tony Evers proposed: a $500 million increase, versus the $1.4 billion Evers has proposed in his People’s Budget. “Politicians don’t stand face-to-face with children who need extra help,” said WEAC President Ron Martin. “They don’t spend hours in the evening communicating with families to make the difference for students. They don’t accept declining pay and benefits and increasing stress for the privilege to educate. But we do.”

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Racine educators, students, parents, community members demand a budget that supports students and educators

Dozens of Racine educators, students, parents and community members packed a school board meeting Monday night to demand a budget that supports all students and gives educators the tools they need to help students succeed. “I realize public school districts across this state are in crisis mode,” said Racine Educators United President Angelina Cruz. “But I strongly believe in the collective power of educators and community to fight back for what’s best for kids.”

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Legislative Update: Joint Finance Committee to take up education issues

The Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee will meet next Thursday, May 23, to take up funding for K-12 education. GOP lawmakers have said they won’t support the $1.4 billion increase the governor is proposing, but they have promised an increase. They may also take up voucher schools, independently run charters and open enrollment.

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