By Tom Beebe

Wisconsin has found its way back to the top of a list about public education, and it’s not a good thing for kids, schools, or their communities.

According to a study by the national Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP), the Badger State cut the most per-student public school aid in the country, comparing the 2011 fiscal year to the 2012 fiscal year, at $635 less. See the study here.

Wisconsin does poorly on all measures:

  • Wisconsin spent 11.9 percent less per student in the 2011 fiscal year than in the pre-recession 2008 fiscal year. That ranks eighth worst. South Carolina, Arizona, and California were the three worst.
  • Per-student spending for 2012 is $776 less than in pre-recession 2008, ranking us fourth worst.
  • Wisconsin cut per-student spending by 10 percent — third worst — from fiscal year 2011 to fiscal year 2012. Only Illinois and Texas are worse.

This isn’t OK for kids because it translates into:

When we should be talking about the educational opportunities needed to succeed, we are instead locked into destructive and ineffective arguments about short-term budget fixes and divisive political battles that are hurting our kids, their schools, and their communities.

Tom Beebe is with the Wisconsin Alliance for Excellent Schools, a diverse, statewide coalition working for comprehensive school-funding reform.

Press Contact:
Molly A. Hunter, Esq.
Director, Education Justice
973 624-1815, x19

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Sharon Krengel
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