Ballweg Highlights School Budget Items

OpEd From Wisconsin Senator, Joan Ballweg R-Markesan, Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee

Summer is winding down and families are getting ready to go back to school. If last school year showed us anything, it was that Wisconsin families are resilient and made great sacrifices to ensure their children were able to succeed inside and outside of the classroom.

As schools are planning to welcome back students, it is more important now than ever we do everything we can to start our students out on the right track. That’s why I voted in favor of the responsible increases in funding for Wisconsin schools in the budget. For the first time in almost 20 years, thanks to legislative republicans, K-12 schools will reach two-thirds funding.

Additionally, Wisconsin Legislative Republicans invested historic amounts in education funding to support our local schools by including:

·         $85.4 million for special education aid

·         $4 million in additional high-cost special education aid

·         $12 million for mental health program aids

·         $7 million for school-based mental health service grants

·         $13 million in additional sparsity aid funding

·         $6.3 million in additional sparsity aid funding for rural schools

·         Additional funding for school libraries

In total, including all of our investments and the $2.6 billion in federal COVID aid, Wisconsin schools will see an increase of $2,900 per student in funding over the previous budget.

I know that this year, bringing kids back into the traditional classroom setting, will present its own set of challenges, but I believe these healthy and responsible investments will set our schools, teachers, families and students up for success.

I wish everyone a great and productive start to the school year!

To reach Sen. Ballweg with questions or comments please call (608) 266-0751 or email [email protected].