All posts by Chris Kulow

Senate education committee: new members and the school districts they represent

Senate committee membership for the 2019-20 legislative session has been announced. As we reported previously, former Berlin school board member state Senator Luther Olsen is returning as chairman of the Senate Committee on Education.

Former Assembly Reps. and newly elected Senators Dale Kooyenga and Kathy Bernier are new to the committee as well as former Somerset school board member Patty Schachtner, who was elected in a special election last year.  Below is the full committee roster and the school districts they represent. If you are a board member or administrator in one of these districts you are in a prime position to influence committee action on K-12 legislation this session. Continue reading Senate education committee: new members and the school districts they represent

Stanford Taylor tabbed as next state superintendent

From DPI: “Governor-elect and State Superintendent Tony Evers announced today his intention to appoint current Assistant State Superintendent Carolyn Stanford Taylor as the next state superintendent following his oath of office on Jan. 7.

“Stanford Taylor is the first female, African-American appointed to serve as an assistant state superintendent. She will be Wisconsin’s first African-American state superintendent of public instruction. Carolyn currently oversees the Special Education Team, one of the agency’s largest teams; the Student Services / Prevention and Wellness Team, which focuses on student safety, support, and engagement; and the residential schools for students who are blind and visually impaired in Janesville and students who are deaf and hard of hearing in Delavan. She is the 2018 Virginia Hart Special Recognition recipient, an honor bestowed by the Department of Administration, Division of Personnel Management, to female state employees who are making a difference through their service to Wisconsin.”

The WASB applauds the choice of Carolyn Stanford Taylor to be the next state superintendent of public instruction and looks forward to working with her on supporting, promoting and advancing public education in Wisconsin.

Full DPI Release: Carolyn Stanford Taylor to be appointed next state superintendent

Racine opts to promote voucher funding transparency

As the impact of taxpayer-funded private school vouchers grows, Racine’s mayor is doing his part to inform taxpayers about the effect vouchers are having on property tax bills.

According to the Racine Journal Times, “Property owners in the City of Racine will receive an insert along with their tax bills this year showing where their tax money goes, with a focus on voucher school funding.”  The insert, included with all Racine property tax bills, shows how total property tax funds collected in the city are split among various units of government, and includes detailed information about the Racine Unified School District tax levy. Continue reading Racine opts to promote voucher funding transparency

Governor-elect holding budget listening sessions this week

Governor-elect Tony Evers and Lt. Governor-elect Mandela Barnes are hosting budget listening sessions across the state in advance of taking office on January 7, 2019 and subsequently proposing a state budget early in 2019.

See the Wispolitics.com links below for more information on registration and locations:

Monday, December 17th

– 4:30 p.m. – 6 p.m.: Gov.-elect Evers, Lt. Gov-elect Barnes: “Building the People’s Budget” tour. Superior. Continue reading Governor-elect holding budget listening sessions this week

Sen. Luther Olsen named chair of Senate education committee

State Sen. Luther Olsen (R-Ripon) returns as chair of the Senate Committee on Education. Sen. Olsen is a former Berlin school board member and has chaired the committee every session the GOP has controlled the Senate since being elected in 2004.  He was also chair of the Assembly Education Committee from 1997-2003.

Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald has announced the standing committees (including several new ones) for the state Senate in the upcoming 2019-20 legislative session as well as the chairs.  Vice chairs and the remaining committee members have not been announced yet.  The new session begins on January 7, 2019.

UPDATED: New members appointed to powerful legislative budget committee

The 16 members of the powerful budget-writing Joint Finance Committee (JFC) have been set by legislative leadership.  Each house (Senate & Assembly) have 8 members each with 6 members from the majority party and 2 from the minority party.  Both houses have GOP majorities heading into the 2019-20 legislative session.   Continue reading UPDATED: New members appointed to powerful legislative budget committee

Rep. Jeremy Thiesfeldt will return as chair of Assembly education committee

State Rep. Jeremy Thiesfeldt (R-Fond du Lac) returns as chair of the Assembly Committee on Education.  Rep. Thiesfeldt is a former teacher and administrator in two Lutheran elementary schools and a Lutheran high school.  He has chaired the education committee since the 2015-16 legislative session.

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos has announced the standing committees (including several new ones) for the state Assembly in the upcoming 2019-20 legislative session as well as the chairs.  Vice Chairs and the remaining committee members have not been announced yet.  The new session begins on January 7, 2019.