Most people in Wisconsin are well aware of the GOP candidate for Governor, Scott Walker, as he has already been Governor for 8 years. His record of cutting taxes for the rich, giving away taxpayer money to foreign corporations, letting the State’s roads fall into disrepair, and fighting a rhetorical war against teachers has all been well documented. But we’ll get back back to Scott Walker in a moment. First let’s discuss his Democratic opponent, Tony Evers.
Who is Tony Evers?
Tony Evers has spent his entire career in education, first working as a teacher, then as a principal, then as an administrator, which leads to his current position as the State’s Superintendent of Public Instruction, the top position in Education in Wisconsin, and the position he now holds.
Unlike Scott Walker, who dropped out of college, Tony Evers completed his bachelors, masters, and doctorate degrees in his chosen field.
Tony Evers has been the State Superintendent of schools in Wisconsin for the entirety of Scott Walker’s time in the Governor’s office. As such, he has had to contend with the unenviable job of dealing with Scott Walker’s war against the State’s teachers.
Much of Scott Walker’s political support came from rural communities. A less ethical political opponent might have just let those communities pay for their political mistakes. Not Tony Evers. He worked to ensure that those communities received the funding they needed for their schools to have enough teachers, despite the uncaring attitude of the Scott Walker government.
The state’s chief of schools is asking Gov. Scott Walker and Republican lawmakers to send millions to rural schools so they can keep their teachers.
As part of State Superintendent Tony Evers’ $13.6 billion request for the 2017-19 biennium, Evers would direct $5.5 million in the 2018-19 school year to provide schools in rural areas with money to give their teachers retention grants, or $750 per full-time teacher.
Rural districts compete with urban and suburban districts for teachers facing the obstacles of not being able to offer high pay, being located in isolated areas, requiring teachers to cover multiple subjects and not being able to offer a lot of training opportunities, the request said.
Evers is seeking a third term as the state’s school leader and is challenged Whitnall Administrator Lowell Holtz. Evers says a teacher shortage arose out of the demonization of public employees resulting from the ACT 10 public bargaining changes, and will have long time negative results in rural Wisconsin.
He says at a recent teacher recruitment day at UW-Stevens Point, only 5 seniors came forward asking about teaching as a profession, when in past years it was more than 40….
“….that concerns me from the Northwoods point of view. Dr. Goff from UW-Madison did a study looking at all the potential teachers and where they want to live and work and be solid members of the community and less than 5 percent said they wanted to live in rural Wisconsin….”
Now, back to Scott Walker. What has he done when faced with this problem of teacher shortages that he created?
He insulted people who went to school to become teachers by insinuating that they had no “real life experience”:
Anyone with “real-life experience” and a bachelor’s degree would be able to get a teaching license in any subject as long as they pass a test proving they are knowledgeable, under a budget provision Gov. Scott Walker announced Thursday.
I guess this is what happens when you have a college dropout as Governor. Voters in Wisconsin have a choice to make regarding the future of their State. Do they want a leader who denigrates teachers at all times, or a leader who values teachers?