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Wisconsin Voucher School Programs Post Enrollment Gains

The number of students attending private schools on state-funded vouchers through the Wisconsin Parental Choice Program more than doubled to 2,514 this year, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction said Tuesday.

Participation in a separate Racine voucher program rose about 23% to 2,127 students.

The 142 districts affected by the statewide program stand to lose $11.9 million in state aid this year, according to the department. They will be able to levy an additional $15.8 million in local property taxes, likely pushing up tax bills in some communities.

Voucher advocates welcomed the numbers, saying they reflect a growing parental interest in having more education options for their children. Opponents criticized the program, saying it is strangling public schools.