Politics and K-12 Tax & Spending Policy

Molly Beck::

Assembly Republicans introduced last week their own K-12 spending plan that counters Walker’s proposal, which Senate Republicans support.

The Assembly proposal has a smaller increase in funding that is paid to districts on a per-student basis than what Walker proposed and an increase in the amount of property taxes districts that have low-caps on their revenue limits can raise.

Bales said public school officials rallied around Walker’s proposal, but now feel like they are being pitted against each other. Groups advocating for public schools sent a letter to Walker and lawmakers Friday asking them to support both proposals.

“It’s not helpful to sort of seduce district leadership into picking sides,” Bales said. “(Budget) delays don’t help us either and I think there are places for compromise, and dividing and pitting districts against another isn’t going to be productive for education in the end.”

Walker said he’s going to continue to lobby lawmakers to support his funding increase.

“I’m going to do what I’ve done since (proposing it), I’m going to go off to schools across the state to remind people how important this is for student success,” Walker said.

Madison spends more than most, now around $18,000 per student.