Chart of 2020-2021 dollars per pupil for taxed supported options

Working to Save Parent Choice

Parental choice programs have grown in Wisconsin over the years. Why? Because parental choice delivers results for families.

  • Choice students outscore public school students on the college-readiness ACT test. 
  • Choice and charter students generally score higher on the state’s academic proficiency exams.
  • Choice and charter schools rank high on DPI report cards.
  • Milwaukee school choice students are more likely to be successful in life. A scholarly study found that exposure to school choice is associated with a reduction of around 53% in drug convictions, 86% in property damage convictions, and 38% in paternity suits.

Wisconsin families want more educational options. But current programs will not survive – let alone expand – unless we address major threats.

Close the Funding Gap 

All children have value. Yet those who attend private and independent charter schools receive only about 60 percent of funding available to public school students. We need to close that gap.

The funding gap particularly hurts private high schools, including those in Milwaukee and Racine, that significantly outperform public schools. Private schools struggle to compete for teachers. An exemplary Milwaukee high school has closed. Others are cutting back on seats.

Eliminate the Property Tax Impact

Enrollment growth can mean high property taxes. This is true except in Milwaukee, where choice will soon be paid 100% by state general purpose revenue. We should do the same elsewhere, including for independent charters.  The Legislative Fiscal Bureau estimates this would be a statewide property tax cut of $200 million. 

End Barriers to Entry

Any family may choose traditional public schools, charters or open enrollment. Barriers to entry exist only in the Milwaukee, Racine and statewide parental choice programs. 

Income eligibility is not the only barrier. Restrictive enrollment periods, district enrollment caps and grade point entry levels limit the ability of families to participate.

Meet the Coalition

The newly formed Wisconsin Coalition for Education Freedom includes six leading education, policy, and advocacy organizations that share a unified voice on educational reform:

  • Americans for Prosperity (AFP) Wisconsin
  • Badger Institute
  • K12/Stride
  • School Choice Wisconsin/School Choice Wisconsin Action
  • Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty (WILL)
  • Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce (WMC)

We are a partnership of organizations who see unprecedented opportunity to advance an agenda that will change the educational landscape in Wisconsin. We are committed to far-reaching policy goals that will give parents more control. And we are building the strongest coalition in the history of parent choice in Wisconsin.

Wisconsin’s Coalition for Education Freedom member logos

Get Involved

Sign up now to join the movement for expanding education freedom in Wisconsin!

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