The rural schools taskforce has just two public hearings left before it begins to compile its report. Assembly Speaker Robin Vos put the task force together to help get a handle on the problems faced by rural school districts.
Committee chair Representative Rob Swearingen says last week’s hearing in Antigo was productive.
“The best part was that we actually had time this particular hearing to hear more from the public, taxpaying citizens. So it went very very well – I was pleased at the end of the day.”
The committee toured Elcho and Antigo schools.
Swearingen says over the course of the hearings several issues have come to light: including broadband access, high transportation costs and a teacher retention problem. He says it’s also clear that dollars are being stretched.
“You know when we started the task force, one of our charges was to make sure the school districts were using the money they have in the most efficient way. And largely we find that these rural school districts are using the resources that they have in the most efficient way.”
A hearing is planned in Pepin, and one other southern Wisconsin location.
The committee plans to start generating its report in February.