Madison – Governor Scott Walker released his Weekly Radio Address today titled “Student Success Today Means a Strong Wisconsin Tomorrow.”
Hi, Scott Walker here.
When we took office, we went to work right away to put Wisconsin back on track. We implemented tough, but prudent reforms to get our fiscal house back in order. These reforms led us to the point where we have a significantly better budget outlook.
We call this the Reform Dividend.
We’re investing these savings into our top priorities – student success, accountable government, and rewarding work.
Ensuring Wisconsin’s students succeed – both in and outside the classroom – is crucial to our state’s future.
That’s why we’ve invested more money than ever before into K-12 education.
That’s right. We’re investing the Reform Dividend into public schools as well as additional help for rural schools with unique needs. We’re also focused on expanding programs that help students receive early college credit. We’re working to expand career and technical education. And we’re doing more to recruit and retain quality teachers.
At the end of the day, we want every student to succeed in Wisconsin, and I trust parents to make the decision that’s best for their children. In addition to public schools, our budget invests in alternative education options, including charter and choice schools.
Our budget also focuses on improving higher education and making it more affordable for Wisconsin students and their families.
We’re increasing support for technical colleges, freezing tuition, and improving the performance system in our technical colleges.
We’re also investing in our world-class University of Wisconsin System. This budget includes an increase of more than $100 million for the UW System. With the help of the Regents, we’re also implementing a performance-based system to ensure we’re providing our students with the best education possible.
I’m proud to announce that on top of our historic tuition freeze, this budget actually reduces undergraduate resident tuition by 5 percent at all UW campuses. To cover this tuition reduction, we’re putting $35 million more into the UW System. That’s on top of the more than $100 million we’re putting into the System to begin with.
This budget proposal ramps up state support for our K-12 system and rural schools in particular, invests in mental health programs for our children, and bolsters opportunities for early college credit so our students can get a jump start on college, career, and life.
Our proposal also makes college more affordable, provides greater opportunities to earn a degree, and helps bridge the gap between higher education and Wisconsin’s workforce.
The Reform Dividend makes this possible and by investing in student success, we’re helping our students fuel the growth of our Wisconsin economy.