June 2017 Church & State - June 2016

Wisc. Voters Reject Pro-Voucher Candidates In April Elections

  AU admin

Wisconsin voters in April elected a slate of school leaders who oppose private school voucher schemes.

In Milwaukee, home of one of the country’s longest-running school voucher programs, candidates aligned with the Wisconsin Working Families Party (WIWFP) swept all four open seats on the Milwaukee School Board, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

“WIWFP worked for months to create and elect a slate of public school champions … who will advocate for more resources for the school system and fight off unaccountable voucher expansion,” the organization said in a statement.

The liberal group, an offshoot of the national Working Families Party, began organizing in Wisconsin about two years ago.

Last year, WIWFP candidates picked up eight of the nine seats on the Racine Unified School Board during an unusual election when all board seats were open. The Racine and Milwaukee districts combined educate about 100,000 students, according to the newspaper.

Additionally, state schools Superintendent Tony Evers easily won re-election to a third term, defeating a pro-voucher challenger.

“I think it says people are really supportive of their public schools,” Evers said, describing his victory to the Wisconsin State Journal. “I view it as a pro-kid win.”

“Wisconsin residents … not only re-elected public school advocate Tony Evers by a large majority, they rejected the policies of his opponent, who supported expansion of private school charters and vouchers at the expense of public schools,” said Wisconsin Education Association Council President Ron Martin.

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