Today, we wish to address a critical issue brought to light by a recent article in Wisconsin Watch, titled "Wisconsin Voucher Schools: Discrimination Against LGBTQ+ and Students with Disabilities".
As a party that proudly upholds social justice, we cannot remain silent in the face of these disturbing revelations. The publicly-funded voucher schools fostering an environment of discrimination against LGBTQ+ students and those with disabilities directly contravene the foundational principles of fairness, respect, and equality that we, as Wisconsinites, strive to uphold.
The Green Party believes in the sanctity of education and its crucial role in shaping a fair, democratic society. Education should be a universal right, not a privilege. We envision a society where every student, irrespective of their sexuality, gender identity, or ability, has a right to quality education in a safe and inclusive environment.
The findings of the Wisconsin Watch article are deeply unsettling. The systemic discrimination against LGBTQ+ students and those with disabilities, in voucher schools that are funded by our public resources, is unacceptable. It's a stark reminder of the urgent need for change.
Keeping in line with our platform, we reaffirm our stand to "Support fully-funded public education and oppose the voucher system of public funding for private schools." Our commitment to this stance arises from the belief that public resources should be used to strengthen our public schools, where accountability, transparency, and non-discrimination policies can be more effectively enforced.
Our solution lies in directing our collective efforts toward achieving the following goals:
- Eliminate the Voucher System: We propose to phase out the voucher system and redirect these public funds towards improving our public schools. This would help ensure that all schools receiving public funds adhere to strict non-discrimination policies.
- Community Engagement and Empowerment: Schools are part of our communities, and all community members should have a voice in how they operate. Through local school boards and open community meetings, we can create safe spaces for dialogue, understanding, and collaborative problem-solving.
- Legislation for Equal Rights and Protections: We call on our legislators to enact robust laws that guarantee equal rights and protections for all students. Schools that do not respect these rights should face significant consequences.
- Promote Education for Sustainable Development: The Green Party is committed to fostering an education system that prepares our children for a future in a just, sustainable, and peaceful world. This includes teaching respect for all individuals and fostering a school environment where diversity is celebrated and all students feel valued and included.
We stand firm in our belief that education is a right, not a privilege. Our schools should be places where every child feels safe, respected, and free to be themselves. We invite you to join us in this important work of ensuring a just, inclusive, and equitable education system for all Wisconsin students.