Enrollment in Wisconsin’s private school voucher programs was up nearly eight percent this school year.
Figures released by the Department of Public Instruction show 36,249 students received vouchers this fall, up from 33,565 last year. School Choice Wisconsin President Jim Bender says several factors likely contributed – such a higher enrollment cap, relaxed administrative burdens, and stronger state support for K-12 education.
“You see a lot of those things kind of coming together,” Bender says. “These schools are responding.”
There were 154 schools enrolled in the statewide voucher program this fall – an increase of 33 from last year. Bender says he expects that growth to continue for at least the next few years, as the enrollment cap continues to rise and more schools get involved. He says his organization has already talked to “dozens” of schools that are interested in joining the program.
The agency estimates the cost of the voucher programs for the 2017-18 school year will be $269.7 million – an increase of about $25 million from last year.