The Assembly Republican Caucus held a press conference last week to unveil their 2015 Legislative Agenda. Included in the proposed agenda are several educational initiatives. Specifically, Assembly Republicans are renewing their commitment to school choice, increased school accountability standards and replacing the Common Core with Wisconsin-specific academic standards.
The Rural Schools Task Force is mentioned and the agenda says that Assembly Republicans will “move forward with options that will make the most comprehensive and meaningful impact for rural schools, including increasing access to important classes through a state-funded digital learning portal.”
In the print version of the “Forward Agenda”, the following summary is provided of the Assembly Republicans’ plan:
Expand Public School Open Enrollment and School Choice Reform. Whether a public or
private education is preferred by a K-12 parent in Wisconsin, the most important component
of the system is making sure there is a choice. Parents and students across the state have
different goals and expectations for what a quality educational path needs to be. Choosing a
school is a personal decision and we will put the control in parents’ hands, not state bureaucracy.
Accountability for All Schools Receiving Tax Dollars. Last session, the Legislature took the
first step toward providing meaningful school accountability for our students and taxpayers.
Incentivizing excellence in growth and performance, while taking corrective measures against failing
schools is the course toward bringing all schools above the line for K-12 students in Wisconsin.
Wisconsin-based Model Academic Standards. Wisconsin schools are better with
Wisconsin-based academic standards. We will support the creation of state-based model
standards and the continued system of local control over schools.
Support for Rural Schools. The Speaker’s Task Force on Rural Schools marked an important
step forward in bringing to light challenges that are unique to smaller, rural schools.
Through the work of the Task Force, we reached out to teachers, principals and parents
to develop ideas with informed, practical and achievable solutions. We will move forward
with the options that will make the most comprehensive and meaningful impact for rural
schools, including increasing access to important classes through a state-funded
digital learning program.