There was at least one positive vote for the future of education in Wisconsin on February 17th. The Oneida County Board of Supervisors went on record supporting “legislative change to the state-aid formula to more fairly distribute state-aids throughout the state of Wisconsin” (full resolution here).
According to the Lakeland Times, Supervisors explained the situation and their votes as follows.
“… I just thought it would be nice that the people of Oneida County know that the supervisors … will support this resolution and bring it down to Madison,” Dean said. “This resolution, 13-2009, is to support our schools – Rhinelander and other districts. With the decreasing state aids to schools, Oneida County school districts are receiving less state aids based on school aid formulas. Oneida County property taxes is not the answer. The state is obligated – I’ll say it again, the state is obligated – to support the district schools. The Legislature has to make some kind of adjustments … If we send support like this, and other people as well, maybe they’ll see that we do have a problem. In closing – if you think education is expensive, try ignorance.”
Supervisor Gary Baier agreed, noting “property value rich and tax poor” northern Wisconsin districts are facing an economic crisis under the current school funding formula.
“The [school funding] formula is broken, it hasn’t worked for years …,” he said. “If they (the state) say they are going to fund it (education) two-thirds, then they ought to fund it two-thirds.”
I’m going to be asking the Dane County Board to do something similar.
Thomas J. Mertz