Across the State, Schools Districts Crumbling Under Walker Budget Cuts
By Kristian Anker-Møller
Last Week, the Department of Public Instruction published a survey that laid bare the effects of Scott Walker’s $1.6 billion cut to public education. If you care about the standard of education in this state, it is not pretty reading.
Nine out of 10 students saw cuts in staff at their school and four out of 10 students saw cuts in core courses: science, mathematics, English, and social studies. Perhaps even more troubling is the fact that more than 60% of school districts envision more drastic cuts looming on the horizon.
Across the state, the message is the same. Royall School District has been forced to close one school; Shullsburg anticipates significant staff cuts next year in an attempt to balance the budget; and Waukesha, one of Scott Walker’s pet districts, relied on record retirements, larger class sizes, reduced benefits, shorter planning periods for teachers and staff, as well as more than $8 million in federal stimulus over the last few years to offset Walker’s $5 million cut.
The numbers are in and they speak their own clear language: Scott Walker’s radical budget cuts are causing unprecedented distress in school districts all over the state. What we see today is that administrators and school children are footing the bill of Walker’s cuts.