Wisconsin's School Choice Programs.
During the last twenty years, parents have increasingly demanded more .
options in public pre-education. Despite rising enthusiasm for school choice, .
it is still not clear if students are making educational gains in these .
alternative learning environments.
Charter schools are public schools governed by a charter (contract) .
with the local or state school board. In exchange for reduced bureaucratic .
regulations and increased program freedom, the charter school is responsible .
for proving increased academic achievement in a specific area within a .
three-to five-year time frame. Funding for charter schools is calculated by .
multiplying the number of students by either the average state or local .
district per-pupil allocation.
Milwaukee's school choice differs that of its opponents, which makes .
citizens think that school choice will harm children left behind in public .
schools, where here in Milwaukee we have the opposite. "The oldest and .
most-examined voucher experiment began in 1990 in Milwaukee. The .
Milwaukee choice program provides low-income parents with vouchers to .
send their children to secular, private schools. It is limited to1.5 percent of .
Milwaukee public school enrollment, involving about 2,500 students who .
receive about 4,300 each.”.
School choice fundamentally has changed Milwaukee's public educations .
mindset, that only wealthier parents had choice. If you were poor and lived .
in Milwaukee your kids would be going to Milwaukee public schools.
Parental choice changed all this. A big change came in 1998, and 2001 when .
Wisconsin's Supreme Court upheld the programs constitutionality. When the .
court upheld vouchers it sent a shock through the public school system. With .
the realization that low-income parents now had options, the public .
education establishment knew it would have to improve. Another choice for .
students in large urban areas is magnet schools.