Wisconsin Battle Moves from Collective Bargaining to School Choice

Governor Walker's epic battle with Democrats and their union allies has transformed into a new confrontation over the educational freedom of low-income and middle-class families.  On Sunday, the governor signed a two-year budget that contains a provision to expand school choice programs to heavily populated Milwaukee and Racine Counties. The current program has been in place for twenty years and is limited to City of Milwaukee residents only.  Participating private schools receive $6,442 of taxpayer funds per student, which is about two-thirds of the amount allotted to public schools.  The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that the new provision makes vouchers available to second-class cities that have 50% or more of their students eligible for free or reduced lunch and meet certain state aid requirements. Wisconsin has sixteen second-class cities, which generally have populations between 39,000 and 149,999.  Of the state's 424 school districts, a total of 244...(Read Full Article)