We heard encouraging words about school reform last week from Republican leaders in the state Legislature.
For starters, those leaders — Sen. Luther Olsen of Ripon and Rep. Steve Kestell of Elkhart Lake — both seem focused on change and flexibility, essential parts of any movement forward with our public schools. And both seem committed to reducing the mandates and state demands on local school systems.
That type of increased local control will be necessary not only to truly bring about change to public schools but also to maneuver them through an era of exceedingly tight budgets. Funding for schools no doubt will be squeezed as Gov. Scott Walker deals with the state’s $3 billion-plus deficit in his two-year budget proposal next month.