Despite some conflicting views in the Assembly and Senate on how the state should approach the issue, lawmakers continue to work on crafting school accountability legislation that both chambers can support.
Lawmakers have been working on bills to help failing taxpayer-funded schools improve since before the session began. State Senator Paul Farrow (R-Pewaukee) says the Assembly’s push to impose sanctions on poor-performing schools remains a sticking point with members of his chamber. The Pewaukee Republican says it’s a “situation where we are trying to hammer the failing schools, instead of trying to figure out how we can help the failing schools get success.”
The Assembly pulled back proposed changes to its version of a school accountability bill last week.
Farrow says the Senate is more focused on creating an evaluation system that gives parents information about how their school is doing. He says “if we give the parents the right information, the parents make the choice.” He argues that’s where the real accountability for school performance will come in.
Lawmakers failed to reach a consensus on a bill last year. Farrow remains optimistic about its chances this session.