Solving Wisconsin’s achievement gap will require a laser-like focus on struggling public school districts and a nimble administration ready for substantial reform.
I believe I’m that leader that can bring fresh, innovative ideas to Wisconsin’s education and social policy, rejecting special interests and cronyism in favor of our hard-working teachers and students.
I’ll begin by creating an education task force (comprised of educators, social service providers, and legislators) that can act quickly, cut through bureaucracy, and make the immediate changes needed to improve the quality of our public schools.
The education task force will initiate a Wisconsin-wide audit and crowdsource ideas from schools across the state so that programs that are effective can be replicated and innovative curriculums that are successful can be standardized. This will create the flexibility for schools to have an evidence-based approach to achieving better student performance and lay the groundwork to reform student testing.
We will prioritize our teachers, making sure they are well-trained, paid fairly, and placed in schools with realistic incentives for improvement. Training our teachers also means providing extensive resources on how to address race-, ethnicity-, and socioeconomic-based disparities in the classroom.
We will also focus on the availability and quality of early childhood development with Pre-K programs. Additionally we will ensure underprivileged kids across the state hit health and nutrition benchmarks.
Most importantly, we will invest in our communities and create an educational environment that facilitates healthy social, emotional and physical development. This includes after school programs, mentorship programs, and tutoring; while also focusing on improving in school services. Without going into detail, this will be a part of our WIServe incentive program for college students.
These are just my initial ideas to improve the quality of our public schools, narrow the achievement gap, and support the development of each and every student so Wisconsin can finally thrive.