Governor Evers Unveils $611 Million Schools Plan
Governor Tony Evers is proposing to use $611 million in of Wisconsin’s surplus tax revenue to continue to support Wisconsin Public Schools and send more help to families with $150 refund checks to every resident. This investment is on top of what he’s already directed to help students, educators and families during the pandemic.
“Wisconsin educators and families are working together to keep students safe and learning through the pandemic, and welcome with gratitude Governor Evers’ plan to provide more support to our efforts,” said WEAC President and Teacher Peggy Wirtz-Olsen. “Governor Evers is a teacher at heart and we know Wisconsin’s children and families are his top priority.”
Governor Evers’ plan would also help families defray childcare costs by creating a nonrefundable caregiver tax credit for qualified expenses incurred by a family caregiver to assist a qualified family member and increasing the newly created Wisconsin nonrefundable credit match on the Child and Dependent Care Credit from 50 percent of the federal credit to 100 percent.
“We should be bringing this back to the people, real simple,” Evers said in announcing his plan for Wisconsin’s $3.8 billion revenue surplus.
His plan for the nearly $611 million additional investment in K-12 education would provide local property tax relief and help schools offset inflationary increases. Some highlights of his plan include:
- $200 per-pupil increase in revenue limits for the 2022-23 school year
- $15.5M to make up what is siphoned from public schools to fund private voucher schools
- $172.6M to increase special education reimbursement rate to 40 percent, up from 30 percent
- $103.7M for increasing per-pupil aid by $128 per student
- $20M to support high-quality after-school programs and other programs
- $20M for lead testing and remediation and $250,000 for water bottle filling stations
- $20M for program to employ, hire or retain reading teachers and reading specialists
- $18.3M in bilingual-bicultural aid and $750,000 to help teachers become licensed/certified as bilingual teachers and teachers of English as a second language
- $18M for school mental health aid additional investments and expanded eligibility
- $5.7M to increase high-cost special education aid reimbursement to 60 percent, up from 40 percent
- $9.9M toward an Urban Excellence Initiative to expand summer school, enhance early childhood education, support community engagement to improve academic achievement and support principals in the state’s five largest school districts
- $3M for a driver education aid program for low-income students
- $2.6M to fully fund reimbursements under the school breakfast program
- $2.4M to alleviate the difference in reimbursement for federal payments for reduced-price and free meals
- $750,000 to help teachers become licensed to teach computer science
- $23.4M for a $642 per pupil increase for voucher and independently run private charter schools
- $111M for the University of Wisconsin System
- $28M for the Wisconsin Technical College System