“School Choice Will Expand” – Wisconsin Governor Walker

M. D. Kittle:

The governor also touched on statewide proficiency data released by the state Department of Public Instruction earlier this week.
DPI on Tuesday released test scores comparing Milwaukee Parental Choice Program students to Milwaukee Public Schools students, failing to account for disparate income levels between the students.
“The vast majority of families in that program are low income,” Walker said. “If you compare the same income categories of students who come from families in Milwaukee Public Schools with Milwaukee Parental Choice Program, you’ll find that in almost every category the kids in the choice schools outperform those in the public schools.”
He added he wanted all schools to perform better.
DPI’s release showed that 19.4 percent of MPS students were proficient or advanced in mathematics compared to 13.2 percent MPCP students participating in the Wisconsin Student Assessment System.
It also showed 14.2 percent of MPS students were proficient or advanced in reading, compared to 11.1 percent of MPCP students.
Data released by the voucher advocacy organization School Choice Wisconsin, however, showed that MPCP students outperformed MPS students everywhere except math, including reading, language arts, science and social studies when comparing only students in low income families.
Free and reduced lunch is available for students whose parents earn less than 185 percent of the federal poverty line, about $41,000 for a family of four. Until last school year, the income eligibility for the school choice program was 175 percent of the federal poverty line.