News in Brief: A State Capitals Roundup
Wisconsin Governor Signs Bill to Raise Voucher Numbers
Gov. James E. Doyle of Wisconsin has signed legislation that will raise the cap on the number of students who can take part in Milwaukee’s state-sponsored school voucher program.
The measure increases the number of vouchers that can be awarded by 7,500, to a total of 22,500. Supporters of the program sought the change as the number of students receiving vouchers, which are worth up to $6,300, neared the previous state cap. ("Deal May Pave Way for Milwaukee Voucher Expansion," March 1, 2006.)
As part of a deal between leaders of the Republican-controlled legislature and the Democratic governor, the measure also requires private schools in the program to obtain independent accreditation and administer a nationally normed test. The scores will be used to study the voucher program’s effectiveness.
In addition, state funding for class-size reduction for grades K-3 in public schools will increase from $2,000 per student to $2,250 per student—an additional $25 million—in the 2008 and 2009 fiscal years.
Vol. 25, Issue 28, Page 29