Home lawmaker Lawmaker pushes back on nearly $8 million cursive cost estimate

Lawmaker pushes back on nearly $8 million cursive cost estimate

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The lawmaker advocating for a Wisconsin cursive renaissance says it will not cost millions of dollars a year. 

Rep. Jeremy Thiesfeldt, R-Fond Du Lac, on Wednesday had a public hearing on his plan to require schools in Wisconsin to teach cursive. 

The biggest point of contention in the hearing came when state officials estimated Theisfeldt’s legislation could cost $8 million.

“Compliance with the requirements in the bill could result in costs of $1.7 million to $5.95 million across public schools annually for the cost of pupil materials,” the state’s fiscal estimate states. 

The same report says it could cost another $1.6 million for teacher training. 

Theisfedlt said those estimates are high, adding that about half of Wisconsin’s public schools currently teach cursive. 

Wisconsin’s Association of School Boards (WASB) is on record as opposing the plan. 

“The WASB opposes this bill based on our resolution opposing unfunded mandates and supporting local school board control of curricular decisions,” the association said in a statement this week.

State Rep. Marisabel Cabrera, D-Milwaukee, questioned who would pick up the additional costs. 

“Where would they get those funds from?” Cabrera asked. “Why not fund it if it’s so important?”