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Gov. Walker to Expand School Voucher Program

Posted at: 02/18/2013 4:51 AM
Updated at: 02/18/2013 5:21 PM

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Gov. Scott Walker tells The Associated Press in an exclusive interview that he is proposing Wisconsin's voucher school program expand in such a way that nine districts would immediately qualify, including Madison and Green Bay.

The expansion would only be allowed in districts that have at least two school buildings receiving a D or F grade on state report cards and have at least 4,000 students.

Walker provided details of the plan in advance to the AP before releasing it publicly on Monday. It will be included in his budget delivered to the Legislature on Wednesday.

The plan is certain to unleash a tough fight.

The other seven districts that would immediately qualify under Walker's plan are Beloit, Fond du Lac, Kenosha, Sheboygan, Superior, Waukesha, and West Allis-West Milwaukee.

State Superintendent blasts Walker's plan

Wisconsin state superintendent Tony Evers says he is "deeply disappointed and saddened" by Gov. Scott Walker's education budget proposals that include an expansion of the voucher school program and a small increase in aid for public schools.

Evers said in a statement Monday that Walker's budget won't increase spending on public education because he doesn't allow the revenue limit which governs spending to increase.

Evers also notes that while 40 percent of the budget is dedicated to public education spending, only 20 percent of the new money Walker intends to spend would go for that.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)