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Since 2009, Unpredictable K12 Funding Places Burden on Wisconsin’s Schools

Since 2002, Wisconsin has fallen from 11th best in the country in terms of K12 funding to 25th. Even more alarming, 14 years ago, the state discontinued the practice of tying annual per-pupil funding to inflation. How does that translate to the budget of Madison’s public schools? If the state had kept up with inflation, we would have had $82 million more available during the 2022-23 school year alone. Over the entire 14-year time horizon, the cumulative loss is over $657 million.

If that doesn’t grab your attention, how about this? For two straight years – in the face of a global pandemic – the state has given K12 exactly zero additional dollars per student. That’s right… nothing.

In September, State Superintendent Dr. Underly released the 2023-25 budget request of $2.5 billion to bring financial stability to Wisconsin’s schools. It has been characterized as a “recovery plan” for the needs of Wisconsin’s more than 800,000 public school children.

If we are successful in obtaining the support of the Wisconsin Assembly for the entire budget package, as you can see in the chart above, we would only be slightly better off than we were in 2012.

What do you wish to see for the future of our state, our children, and our economy?


We’re on a mission to ensure Madison (and Wisconsin) schools are well-funded in order to educate our future leaders.

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