Education A National Roundup

Seats Likely to Be Rationed in Milwaukee Voucher Program

By Catherine Gewertz — January 10, 2006 1 min read

The state of Wisconsin has informed private schools that seats in the Milwaukee voucher program will be rationed in the 2006-07 school year.

In a Dec. 27 letter to private schools participating in the state-sponsored program, Tricia Collins, the administrator for the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program, said the rationing system would have to be used to comply with a state-imposed cap that limits participation to 15 percent of the Milwaukee public schools’ enrollment, or about 14,750 students.

The state department of education expects that demand for seats in the voucher program will reach that mark next year, the letter said, so a “proration” system will be used in which the number of seats permitted will be divided by the number reported available.

In November, Gov. James E. Doyle proposed raising the cap to 18 percent, but the legislature has made no decision. (“Wis. Governor Seeks to Raise Milwaukee Voucher Cap,” Nov. 16, 2005.)