Legislative Update – July 20

More on the Senate Republicans’ budget proposal unveiled earlier this week has been unpacked, including provisions that would impact voucher schools. The Senate proposal does not include the governor’s idea to move to lifetime licenses for teachers and administrators, but instead calls on the DPI to ease the process in a few ways. The Senate proposal also increases the score needed on a civics exam to graduate and changes parameters of Teach for America grants.

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Legislative Update – July 18

Senate Republicans today released their own budget proposal. In it, the Senate GOP includes all actions taken by the Joint Finance Committee mid-June, along with some areas of K-12 funding that have been agreed upon by the Senate and Assembly. Senate leadership is hoping the plan will prompt Assembly Republicans to engage on the outstanding issues holding up the budget, and that the finance committee would move swiftly to move a budget through.

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Many teachers struggling with low pay and high student debt, survey finds

In addition to being underpaid, many teachers are struggling to pay off hefty student loans, leaving them feeling overloaded and trapped, according to results of a new survey by NPR Ed. On a scale of 1 to 5, with five being “terrified” 28% of respondents said they were indeed “terrified,” while another 24% selected “4”, meaning a majority of teachers surveyed were either “terrified” or just shy of being “terrified.”

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Barb VanDoorn of Lake Holcombe is winner of a major national Award for Teaching Excellence

Lake Holcombe school counselor Barb VanDoorn is the winner of a prestigious California Casualty Award for Teaching Excellence, the NEA Foundation announced Monday. She will receive the award at the NEA Foundation’s Salute to Excellence in Education Gala next February in Washington, D.C. “Barb explains it is the job of educators to identify the strengths and needs of each student, and believes the counselor’s role is to take it one step further — advocating for each student in the classroom, the community, and in realizing each student’s future goals,” said WEAC President Ron Martin, who nominated her for the national award.

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Legislative Update – July 17

Senate Republicans announced they will release their own budget proposal Tuesday, something Capitol insiders have been speculating about for some time. The state budget is currently two weeks overdue. According to statehouse insider WisPolitics, a spokeswoman for Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said the document was still being drafted by the Legislative Fiscal Bureau.

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