Funding Education a Tough Assignment

By: Sabrina Wu
By: Sabrina Wu

With Republicans controlling both houses in the state legislature and a Democrat in the Governor's office, educators say they know working on school funding will be a tough assignment.

Governor-elect Jim Doyle has made promises to lift caps on how much a district can spend, and to do away with the Qualified Economic Offer that limits the size of teacher pay raises. Doyle also committed not to raise property taxes, however. Some people say they wonder how he plans to do all of the above.

"I don't see how all those promises can be made, to be very honest with you," said Wausau schools Superintendent Charles Skurka. "What is going to happen in Madison in January? Are folks going to be able to work together?"

"We've started already cutting programs and laying off teachers," said Wausau Education Association president Al Betry. "We need to do things that can salvage the good things of education, and we're going to have to make some tough decisions."

Teachers say it will take creativity and new ideas to work on the challenges of funding education in Wisconsin.