State hasn't spent yet on literacy program
- Associated Press
- September 28, 2013 - 3:15 PM
MADISON, Wis. — Wisconsin has spent none of the $400,000 set aside as part of Gov. Scott Walker's program aimed at boosting literacy and early childhood education, according to a new audit.
The Legislative Audit Bureau report notes the Read to Lead Development Fund was approved by the Legislature in 2011 and established in April 2012, according to the Wisconsin State Journal (http://bit.ly/1bgTyd2 ).
The fund is intended to provide grants to school boards and others to support programs that help boost reading. But the audit said the Read to Lead Development Council, which is supposed to recommend how the grant money should be spent, has not yet been appointed by Walker.
In a statement, Walker spokeswoman Julie Lund said the project is an "ongoing initiative" and "there was no deadline set in the bill to have the Council up and running."
She added that other parts of the project are already underway, including new reading assessments, educator evaluations, a program connecting male inmates with their children through reading and a program to encourage day-care providers to boost the literacy of children in their care.
As for the council, Lund said, "it is in the process of being formed, and many of the members have accepted positions. The board is expected to begin meeting and making recommendations for dispersing funds this fall."
The council is intended as a public-private partnership tasked with "raising funds to support worthy reading initiatives across the state."
Once formed, it's expected to include Walker or a designee as chairman; state Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers or a designee as vice chairman; leading members of the Senate and Assembly education committees or their designees; three practicing educators and 13 members of the philanthropic, business or literacy communities.
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