June 4, 2021

Education Advocacy Update: Governor Says Budget Veto Possible

Education Advocacy Update: Governor Says Budget Veto Possible Featured Image

Governor Tony Evers has not ruled out the possibility of vetoing the entire state budget under development by the Joint Finance Committee. The panel has passed a preK-12 budget that would spend less than 10 percent of what Evers proposed on K-12 schools and puts into jeopardy $3.1 billion in federal schools funding that could come into our schools, along with pulling out other funding proposed for Medicaid expansion, unemployment system upgrades and more.

WEAC is in discussions with lawmakers at the Capitol about the harmful state budget the JFC is proposing so far, and you can help now by emailing your elected officials with your concerns.

Email Your Legislators

People’s Maps Commission
WEAC is partnering over the next month to recruit groups of 4-5 WEAC educators to participate in a one-time Zoom meeting with a facilitator to submit our thoughts about what legislative districts should look like, based on our community & school district demographics. Drop us an email if you’d like to volunteer. Hurry, the deadline is mid-July.

Joint Finance Committee
The budget-writing Joint Finance Committee continues its work to create a state budget to send to the full Legislature. The panel will take up additional state agencies including corrections, courts and stewardship on June 10.

Senate to Meet
The full Senate will meet on Wednesday. On the docket for a vote are:

  • Open Enrollment and Vouchers (SB-41/AB-59). Increases the income eligibility for the statewide voucher program to 300 percent of the federal poverty level, allows a pupil to submit full-time open enrollment applications to an unlimited number of nonresident school districts, and prohibits a resident school district from denying an open enrollment application if the basis for the application is that it is in the best interests of the pupil.

Bills We’re Watching

  • Transgender Athletic Participation. A series of Republican bills to limit transgender athletes in schools (AB 195 / SB 323 & AB 196 / SB 322) continue to move through the Legislature. AB 195, targeted at college athletes, has passed out of committee on a party-line vote and the K-12 version, AB 196, is set for a committee vote June 9. WEAC has registered against all bills. Learn more and take action.

 Circulating for Co-Sponsorship

  •  Prohibiting Educators from Teaching True History. A proposed Republican bill circulating in Wisconsin puts schools smack dab in the middle of a national attempt to prohibit educators from teaching the truth about our nation’s history. The proposal stokes fear about what students learn in an effort to undermine trust in, and funding for, students and public schools. Read more
  • Summer School Counts. This proposed bill would increase the percentage of a school district’s summer school enrollment included in the enrollment count to 100 percent by the 2024-25 school year.