Scott Walker's budget was so dramatically out of line with expectations of state residents, that it's hard to know what he was thinking. This is an all or nothing proposed downsizing or rejection of everything "government." Many Walker voters are suddenly feeling the full effects of their own policy. Beloit Daily News:
BRILLION, WI: The overwhelming message dozens of educators, parents and school board members delivered to the Legislature's Joint Finance Committee Wednesday was simple: Fund public schools and stop the expansion of taxpayer-subsidized vouchers.Scott Walker's Act 10 union busting "tools" are all worn out. Vilified teachers leaving state:
"I'm not just concerned, I'm appalled that education cuts are even on the table. … Our schools are not failing as you have been repeatedly told. They are struggling to succeed with the little resources that you offer them," Kathryn Carley, who has children in the Green Bay Area Public School District, told the committee. Hundreds of community members attended the day-long public hearing at Brillion High School, most of them voicing concerns on varying aspects of Gov. Scott Walker's proposed budget.
Don Hietpas, Appleton's chief financial officer: "We cannot sustain excellent student programming and student activities if our revenues continue to be frozen," Hietpas said.
Beloit area schools are having a harder time recruiting teachers: Superintendent of the Beloit Turner School District Dennis McCarthy said there has been a sharp reduction in applicants for teaching positions for the past several years. “We have posted numerous positions with little or no applicants … there are simply far less quality candidates available.”
McCarthy said a technical education teacher position in 2009 yielded 17 applicants, but the same position had 5 applicants in 2013. A fifth grade teacher yielded 259 applicants in 2009, yet there were only 28 applicants in 2014 for the same position … down 30 teachers from the four years ago … anticipates $5 million in cuts this year. Tasha Bell, equity coordinator for the district, said “This year we have gone to fairs in Illinois hoping to net some bilingual and candidates of color.”
Cheryl Hanley-Maxwell, associate dean of teacher education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said there has been a decline among students pursuing education at the university. “It hasn’t been significant, but it’s going down,” Hanley-Maxell said.
Hanley-Maxwell said those who do become teachers are choosing more often to leave the state, estimating a 10 percent increase in students who leave Wisconsin after graduating from UW-Madison … enrollment in California teaching programs is down 53 percent