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Evers, Walker Welcome Back Students In Milwaukee

Democrat, Republican Praise Milwaukee Public Schools

Chuck Quirmbach/WPR

Two expected rivals for next year’s governor’s race met at a Milwaukee school Tuesday to welcome students back.

Gov. Scott Walker and state schools Superintendent Tony Evers greeted students at Walt Whitman School, a kindergarten through eighth grade public school.

After giving “high-fives” to many of the children, Walker and Evers met separately with the news media. Walker said state schools are doing well. Asked if Evers deserved some of the credit, Walker responded: It’s a team effort,” Walker said. “Dr. Evers and I have worked together, but really the majority of the attention goes to staff at each of our respective schools.” Walker said more state aid for school districts are on the way, via the proposed state budget would put more money into the schools.

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Evers told reporters the funding would not be enough to make up for past cuts. He said, “Certainly our school funding is not where we want it to be, it’s down from where it originally was five years ago, six years ago.”

Walker and Evers also took different approaches when speaking to some Whitman staff and students, Walker said a few years ago that he, Evers and others put together criteria for report cards for schools. “So when I say Walt Whitman consistently exceeds expectations, that’s not just a slogan, you actually do that,” the governor said.

Evers also praised Whitman, and touted the entire Milwaukee Public Schools system. “I’m here because I absolutely support the work of the school and the hard work of the school board members, and administrators and teachers all across Milwaukee Public Schools,” Evers said.

Several other Democrats say they’re also running for governor. Education is expected to be a key issue.