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Citizens pass numerous referenda to support their local schools

Wednesday, November 9, 2016


Tom McCarthy, DPI Communications Director, (608) 266-3559

MADISON — “Yesterday, people in communities across Wisconsin voted to increase funding to educate kids,” said State Superintendent Tony Evers. “Their support for schools spanned areas that voted for both political parties. Put simply, people have come to expect that kids have access to a quality education and they are willing to pay for it — that’s a good thing.”

Map of referenda that passed on Nov. 8, 2016. List in official news release.Since the start of 2012, more than half of public school districts (242) have passed referenda to exceed state imposed revenue controls. That total includes districts that have improved or upgraded facilities and those that have asked to spend more than what the state allows to provide opportunities for students. So far in 2016, 154 questions have been posed by 111 districts at a success rate of 79.22 percent. This year, a record high in operating referenda questions have already passed (58) at a record rate of passage (81.69%).

“While passage of a local referenda is a cause for celebration, we still have many students in districts that have not found success at the ballot box,” Evers said. “We cannot ignore that fact and its impact on the quality of our state school system. New revenue authority for districts to spend on the education of our kids would go a long way in alleviating that problem.”

NOTES: More information about school referenda is available on Department of Public Instruction School Financial Services Referendum Information page. A list of districts that passed referenda on Nov. 8 is in the official news release. 

Official Release