Wisconsin budget committee debates Republican idea to takeover struggling Milwaukee schools

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MADISON, Wisconsin — The Legislature's budget-writing committee is debating a Republican-backed plan that would place the worst-performing Milwaukee Public Schools under control of a commissioner appointed by the county executive who could convert them into private voucher schools or independent charter schools.

The Joint Finance Committee debated it late Tuesday night along with a variety of education issues, including removing an enrollment cap on the private school voucher program.

Under the Milwaukee plan, the commissioner could control up to three schools in the first two years and up to five more in the third year.

It would also create a parallel program for other districts.

The nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau says Madison and Racine meet two of the three criteria and could qualify later.

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