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Educator Who Challenged Scott Walker's Vouchers Agenda Wins 61-39 in Wisconsin

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Headlined to H3 4/3/13

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Source: The Nation


Tony Evers. (Flickr/WisPolitics.com)

When Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker announced that he would use his upcoming budget to expand private-school voucher programs, even some Republican legislators objected.

But the loudest objection to Walker's approach, and to the broader national push to shift taxpayer dollars away from public education and toward private experiments, came from Wisconsin Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers. Evers, an educator who in 2009 was elected to lead the state's Department of Public Instruction, appeared before the legislature's powerful Joint Finance Committee and in communities across Wisconsin to state that opposition. "This has to stop," he said. "The state cannot continue to play favorites. We can and must meet our constitutional obligation to invest in all of our kids."

Complaining that the previous Walker budget had cut $1.8 billion from public schools, Evers argued that it was wrong for the governor to use his 2013-15 state budget plan to essentially freeze public school funding while hiking spending for private voucher school students by as much as $1,400 each.

Staking out so clear a position in opposition to the governor's agenda -- not just on vouchers but on a host of education policy issues -- was risky. Evers was up for reelection and he faced a determined challenge from Republican state Representative Don Pridemore, a steady supporter of Walker's legislative agenda. The governor did not make an endorsement in the nonpartisan race and that miffed Pridemore,  one of the most conservative members of the legislature. But the challenger's campaign was cheered on by the Republican Assembly Speaker, conservative radio hosts and activists.

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John Nichols, a pioneering political blogger, has written the Online Beat since 1999. His posts have been circulated internationally, quoted in numerous books and mentioned in debates on the floor of Congress.

Nichols writes about politics (more...)
 
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Can someone articulate what  are the Lefts ob... by Matthew Jacobs on Wednesday, Apr 3, 2013 at 6:33:07 PM
If the school is a For Profit organisation then a ... by Darryl P on Thursday, Apr 4, 2013 at 4:53:06 AM
Finally some good news. More senior educators shou... by Darryl P on Thursday, Apr 4, 2013 at 4:50:23 AM
More "Issues Oriented BS" & less focus on the ... by Alan MacDonald on Thursday, Apr 4, 2013 at 7:56:10 AM