Walker said an expansion of school choice likely would be included in the budget he introduces early next year. Sen. Alberta Darling (R-River Hills), co-chairwoman of the budget-writing Joint Finance Committee, said she would be interested in considering bills on choice even before that.
The other co-chairman, Rep. Robin Vos (R-Rochester), said he would leave it to Walker to decide whether to include it in the budget, but he wants to address school choice at some point in the two-year legislative session.
Both legislators said they initially favored expanding the program to select areas before making it available statewide. They named Beloit, Racine and Green Bay as possibilities.
“I absolutely do not think we have the ability to expand across the state all at once,” Vos said.
Vos in 2007 wrote a budget provision that would have expanded school choice to Racine County. The Assembly, then controlled by Republicans, approved a version of the budget with that provision but it was taken out in a deal reached with Democrats who ran the Senate.