All posts by Chris Kulow

Sen. Olsen: States must take the lead to make education policy a bipartisan priority

Wisconsin state Senator Luther Olsen (R) penned a joint opinion column in The Hill with Washington state Representative Sharon Tomiko Santos (D) that calls on state legislators to take the lead in returning education policymaking to its legacy as a top bipartisan priority.

The state lawmakers write:

“As our national politics has become more partisan than ever, it falls upon us as state legislators to take the lead in returning education policymaking to its legacy as a bipartisan priority. The good news is, there is an opportunity before us.” Continue reading Sen. Olsen: States must take the lead to make education policy a bipartisan priority

Research continues to show increased school funding equates to better outcomes for students

New research continues to show that funding does matter in education.  From Chalkbeat:

“A 2018 overview of the research on education spending found that more money consistently meant better outcomes for students — higher test scores, higher graduation rates, and sometimes even higher wages as adults. It was enough for Northwestern economist Kirabo Jackson to say the question was ‘essentially settled.’

“Since then, the research hits have just kept on coming.”

Included in the story are four new studies from around the country, including one in Wisconsin: Continue reading Research continues to show increased school funding equates to better outcomes for students

UW report examines trends in student poverty, eligibility for FRL

The University of Wisconsin Applied Population Lab, in their ongoing series on Wisconsin’s demographics, recently released a report looking at the geographic disparities in student poverty, as measured by eligibility for free and reduced-price lunch (FRL).

The report suggests recent increases in student poverty have stabilized on a statewide basis, and while student poverty occurs throughout the state, geography is a strong predictor.  Some key takeaways: Continue reading UW report examines trends in student poverty, eligibility for FRL

Feds release updated income eligibility levels for school meals

From the DPI: “The U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service updated the income eligibility guidelines for meals served at schools and day care programs based on federal poverty levels.

“The income guidelines, updated annually, are effective July 1, 2019, through June 30, 2020. The guidelines apply to student eligibility for free and reduced‑price school meals offered through the National School Lunch or School Breakfast Programs and milk offered through the Special Milk Program along with reimbursement for meals served in day care centers and family child care homes participating in the Child and Adult Care Food Program. Continue reading Feds release updated income eligibility levels for school meals

Resolutions are your board’s chance to put its imprint on the WASB

Individual member school boards provide the policy guidance and direction that informs the WASB’s legislative agenda and legislative advocacy efforts on your behalf.  Boards initiate this process by adopting resolutions and submitting them to the WASB.

The best way you can get the WASB working on your issue is to offer a board resolution stating what you think our position on the issue should be and why.  It can be on literally any relevant topic and can create a new resolution or amend/eliminate existing ones.

The deadline for submitting board resolutions to WASB is Sept. 15. WASB provides a fillable PDF form and instructions for submitting your board’s resolution. Continue reading Resolutions are your board’s chance to put its imprint on the WASB

Additional school mental health grants awarded

From the Department of Public Instruction:

“The Department of Public Instruction distributed $6.5 million for services to support students’ mental health in 120 public school districts and one independent charter school. The funding comes from the School-Based Mental Health Services Grants Program. Continue reading Additional school mental health grants awarded

LFB releases memo on impact of state budget on school districts

The nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau (LFB) has released their estimate of the district by district effect of the major K-12 funding provisions included in the signed-into-law 2019-21 state budget. The numbers in the memo represent the estimated change to prior law.

The memo includes analysis of the following provisions:

  • Per Pupil Revenue Limit Adjustment and Low Revenue Adjustment
  • Per Pupil Aid
  • Special Education Aid

Access the memo to see the effect on your school district here:

Estimated Effects of School Finance Provisions for School Districts Under 2019-21 Budget Act