A reader from Wisconsin points out that Governor Walker’s reforms are not intended to improve the schools, but to turn schooling into a free-market activity:
Thank you Diane for highlighting yet another unproven attempt to inject free market ideology into Wisconsin public schools.
The recent recall attempt exposed the forces supporting Gov. Walker and how they wish to dismantle public education and fill the void with free market principles. Walker rolled out phase two of his anti-public education plan in his State of the State address with more promises to “transform education” and “expand the number of choices for families in Wisconsin—be it a traditional, a charter, a voucher, a virtual, or a home school environment.”
The Wisconsin Policy Research Institute–which provided the first critique you mentioned– is in the same camp (or a suburb) of the MacIver Institute–which sponsored Operation Angry Badger designed to “document the shortcomings of public schools in Wisconsin.”
WPRI, MacIver, Citizens for Responsible Government (CRG), and the Tea Party forces supporting Gov. Walker have no intent to improve public education or provide support for our neediest students. A successful public education system with an extensive support network works against the lassez-faire capitalist ideology of these free marketeers.