Walker referred to studies that show Milwaukee children in the voucher program are 17 times more likely to graduate from high school than their counterparts in Milwaukee public schools.
"If you look at the kids who come into the Milwaukee parental choice program, they more often than not come in (with lower learning levels) than kids in the Milwaukee public school system. But in the end, one of the most important outcomes is that they're 17 percent more likely to graduate by the time they're done.
"One of our greatest challenges is keeping kids in the system all the way to graduation ... It used to be that just graduating was enough to get a job, but these days you've got to have a two-year or four-year post-secondary education component just to get a job in our society. If you're not making it through graduation you're going to be another statistic."
Wisconsin Education Association Council, the state’s largest teachers’ union, is trying to recall several Republican senators from office and destroy the GOP majority in the chamber.
The union’s president, Mary Bell told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that research "does not support broadening choice."
I believe the only research that matters is the research conducted by the parents of every individual student in Wisconsin and America.
If they find a school that fits their child's needs - be it public, public charter, private or religious - they should have a right to use their share of state money to enroll their child in that school.
Somehow our society has been blinded into thinking that government-run schools have an exclusive right to K-12 students. State constitutions mandate that governments provide an education to every student in their jurisdiction. That does not mean those students have to attend government-run schools.
By providing the means for students to finance an education, the state has met its constitutional responsibility. At that point the state should step aside and let parents decide where that education will take place.
As far as I can tell, the only reason for enforcing geographic school boundaries is to provide a guaranteed clientele, and guaranteed jobs, for unionized teachers. That's not a very good reason to keep any kid trapped in any school that's not meeting his or her needs.
Scott Walker seems to understand that. The union doesn’t and it’s unrealistic for us to hope otherwise. Will legislative Republicans?
Leaders should be going bold in their attempts to save children from failing public schools. This is not the time to be pussyfooting around, making sure the adults aren’t offended by reforms that put the interests of children first.