An accurate assessment of the recall picture.
As communities continue to provide Act 10 success stories, the efforts of recall organizers against Governor Walker become more difficult. And with tax bills arriving soon, the positive results for Wisconsin taxpayers will make those recall efforts even more ominous.
Governor Walker’s reforms have produced some stunning results, turning a budget around that was structurally unsound. School districts and communities throughout the state are in much better financial shape due to the moves undertaken by the Walker administration. The following results were tabulated by the Wisconsin Association of School District Administrators, based on responses from over 83% of all school districts:
- New teacher hires outnumber layoffs by 1213 positions
- 75% of districts maintained or decreased class sizes for K-3
- 67% of districts maintained or decreased class sizes for 4-6
- 92% of districts kept or expanded sports programs
- 89% of districts kept or expanded technology support staff
- 85% or more kept or increased their guidance, social work, and psychology staff
- 90% of districts kept or expanded gifted and talented staff
- 96% of districts kept or expanded early childhood staff
- 96% of districts kept or expanded AP sections and courses
- 82% of districts kept or expanded vocational/technical programs
- 82% of districts kept or expanded art programs
- 84% of districts kept or expanded music programs
- 87% of districts kept or expanded foreign language programs
Even more telling though were the results from three districts from Southern Wisconsin that didn’t implement the reform tools.
The most telling results of the WASDA survey came from responses by the Milwaukee, Kenosha and Janesville districts. Those districts accounted for 68% of all teacher layoffs in the state, yet only represent 12.8% of Wisconsin students. These three districts did not adopt the reforms put in place by Governor Walker and Act 10, and were not able to utilize the tools offered to control costs.
So when you see the ads put out by recall organizers, liberal 3rd party groups and public sector unions keep in mind their “information” to support their claims comes from districts that didn’t utilize the tools offered via Act 10.
As pointed out, the whole picture isn’t presented:
If they were honest, they would discuss how 51% of districts reduced extracurricular programs in 2004 (according to WEAC), before Act 10 tools were available. Or the fact that over the past five years, the property tax levy has increased by an average of $181 million per year. Not so this year, as the K-12 school tax levy will actually decrease by $47 million.
Be sure to point out these successes when you encounter those pushing to recall Governor Scott Walker. In any discussion about the direction of Wisconsin point out not only how Act 10 has been a success, point out as well the results being seen where the tools offered weren’t implemented.