Specific details of Governor Walker’s Special Session School Safety Package are becoming available. We anticipate that copies of the six bills that comprise the package will be posted on the Legislature’s website by tomorrow (Friday, March 16) afternoon, once the paper ballot vote in each house on introducing the package of six bills has been tallied.
The heart of the package is the creation of a $100 million grant program, to be administered by a new Office of School Safety within the state Department of Justice (DOJ). The director of this new office would be appointed by the Attorney General. The office would award grants to improve school safety to school districts, operators of independent charter schools, governing bodies of private schools, and tribal schools. Although the money would be provided in the 2017-18 fiscal year, it would be provided under a continuing appropriation, so that any money that was not spent during the that period would carry over.
Continue reading Details of Governor’s Special Session school safety package emerge
Activity in the State Capitol around the issue of improving school safety intensified this week. The WASB has been meeting with the governor’s office as well as legislative leadership offices regarding how to best address the issue.
Based on our member-approved resolutions and informed by an effort from 2013 in the wake of the Sandy Hook tragedy, the WASB has asked for resources to be provided with as much local flexibility as possible on how they can be used in recognition of the differences between the 422 school districts in Wisconsin. There must be the ability for school districts to utilize school safety-related resources in ways that make the most sense based on local circumstances (facilities, local law enforcement presence, etc.) and identified needs. Continue reading Legislative session to address school safety appears increasingly likely
As the 2017-18 Legislative Session winds down, the Wisconsin Assembly is scheduled to meet in floor session tomorrow to take up a full calendar of bills, including two K-12-related bills:
Assembly Bill 780—Notice to a school of a permanency review or hearing, notice to a school district of a foster home or group home license or out-of-home care placement, and transfer of pupil records. This bill changes the requirements for notifying schools in the process of placing a child in out-of-home care. It adds the child’s school to the list of entities that receive notice of the review or hearing on the child’s proposed permanency plan and that may have the opportunity to submit written comments to the court on the proposed plan, but may not otherwise participate in the review or appear at the hearing. AB 780 is is one of 13 bills developed the Task Force on Foster Care established last June by Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester). (See previous post.) Continue reading Full Assembly to take up two education bills on Feb.13
Assembly Republicans and Governor Walker have struck a deal on a proposal to provide taxpayers with a one-time tax credit of $100 per child and a one-time sales tax holiday for purchases of $100 or less. This agreement replaces an earlier plan proposed by the governor to create an ongoing, annual child tax credit.
While Republicans who firmly control the state Assembly are on board, the future of the proposal in the GOP-controlled state Senate, however, is uncertain.
According to Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau), it’s unclear whether Senate Republicans will support it. Fitzgerald said he will discuss the proposal with his members Tuesday.
Continue reading Governor, Assembly Republicans agree to sales tax holiday and child tax rebate
The Blue Ribbon Commission on School Funding has begun what will be a series of hearings around the state to take testimony from the public on the state’s funding formula. The first hearing is set to take place Friday, February 2 in Milwaukee. The rest of the hearing dates and locations have not yet been announced.
It is important that public school board members and administrators testify at these hearings. The commission needs to hear the challenges the current funding system creates for your school district and, most importantly, the impact it has on opportunities for your students. Continue reading February Advocacy Tip: Prepare to testify at school funding hearings
The Blue Ribbon Commission on School Funding has announced that the first of its statewide public hearings will be held on Friday, Feb. 2, 2018 at the James Madison Academic Campus, 8135 W. Florist Ave, Milwaukee. (See map.)
The hearing will begin at 10:30 a.m. and will conclude at 4:00 p.m.
Continue reading School Funding Commission sets time, location for Milwaukee hearing
During last week’s State Education Convention, state Rep. Joel Kitchens (R-Sturgeon Bay), who co-chairs the Blue Ribbon Commission on School Funding, shared information about the Commission’s mission and schedule, including a memo outlining the scope of the Commission’s directive.
According to the Blue Ribbon Commission’s Scope Statement, the Commission is tasked with evaluating the following items:
Continue reading Focus of Blue Ribbon Commission on School Funding Clarified