Hours of teaching differ for schools

Amy Hetzner & Alan Borsuk:

Where a student attends public school in the five-county metropolitan Milwaukee area can make a difference of as much as four weeks’ time in the classroom per year, according to data reported to the state.
For the last two school years, the school districts of Burlington, Cudahy, Kettle Moraine, Mukwonago, Slinger, South Milwaukee and Wauwatosa reported that most – if not all – of their schools held classes at least 65 hours longer than the minimum hours set by state law.
Meanwhile, the Oak Creek-Franklin and Waukesha school districts met for the minimum amount of hours, and a large number of schools in the Milwaukee Public Schools system fell below the standard in 2006-’07.
“There’s nothing more important than time with the classroom teacher,” said Tony Evers, deputy superintendent of the state Department of Public Instruction. “And, if that’s continually taken away, the state of Wisconsin would have an obligation that doesn’t happen.”
By and large, most public schools in Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Racine, Washington and Waukesha counties reported similar annual total instructional hours for their students for the past two years, the only years for which data was available from the DPI.