The federalization of Wisconsin DPI

Nearly half of Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction employees owe their livelihood to the federal government as they execute some 59 federal education-related programs. Outside of the University of Wisconsin System and the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, which administers Medicaid, DPI receives more federal dollars than any other area in state government. These facts raise questions about the amount of time and money spent on administration and bureaucracy rather than bettering the lives and minds of Wisconsin’s children, as well as the extent to which local school districts must follow the dictates of Washington, D.C., bureaucrats and their counterparts in Madison rather than the wishes of parents, teachers and local educators. New data unearthed by the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute also gives Wisconsinites the opportunity to consider — with the dawn of the recent Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) — whether DPI can and should restructure itself to direct more resources and decision-making ability to teachers and local school boards. Full story here > Washington’s grip on state schools continues to grow

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