Democratic Party of Wisconsin
Press Release

Wisconsin Senate President Chris Kapenga Threatens Education Funding

 

By - May 26th, 2021 04:04 pm

MADISON, Wis. — Today, Wisconsin Senate President Chris Kapenga announced his intent to gut public education funding from the state budget, saying “I think we’re good for right now.” Kapenga intends to force schools to use federal pandemic funds to fill the gap, and even pushed nonsensical “solutions” such as slashing Wisconsin school districts from 400 to 72 – leaving one school district per county. Kapenga’s outrageous comment on school funding comes one day after Wisconsin Republicans refused to accept $1.6 billion in federal funds in exchange for expanding BadgerCare.

Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Ben Wikler released the following statement:

“If Republicans are so concerned about fiscal responsibility, they should have expanded BadgerCare yesterday and accepted the extra $1.6 billion dollars from the federal government. Wisconsin’s students, teachers, and families just went through a once-in-a-lifetime health crisis. The bare minimum, or worse, cuts to current funding levels, isn’t enough. Now is the time for bipartisan, common sense solutions to address the big problems facing Wisconsin, and that starts with continuing investments in our public schools.

“Two years ago, a Republican-led bipartisan panel agreed that restoring Wisconsin’s two-thirds funding commitment was the right thing to do. Now, Republicans are opposing any additional support for Wisconsin students. The fact that Republicans like Chris Kapenga want to not only restrict school resources, but also erase more than 300 school districts, shows extreme ignorance to what Wisconsin families and students need at this moment.

“As a lifelong educator, and someone who has spent years listening to the concerns of Wisconsinites, Gov. Evers knows that what’s best for our kids is what’s best for the state. Republicans should uphold their commitment to fund two-thirds of school costs, and pass Gov. Evers’ proposal to revamp and increase funding for schools as they bounce back from the pandemic.”

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