"We Need Education for our Children:" Parents React to Failed West Allis-West Milwaukee School District Referendum

Voters in the West Allis - West Milwaukee school district have spoken. 56% saying \"no\" to a referendum to increase spending. 44% voted yes.

District officials say they needed the extra money after overspending by 14 million dollars over the last few years. Now, they'll have to find it somewhere else, most likely in the form of budget cuts. 

\"I thought it would be close but I was surprised that it was not,\" said parent Tracy Campbell.

The future is uncertain for parents in the West Allis - West Milwaukee school district.

\"My youngest one in kindergarten already has 30 plus kids in her class so, not good.\" said parent Nichol Manning-Lassa.

Increased class sizes at some schools and eliminating sports at the high school and intermediate levels could soon become a reality.

\"The kids need the money. We need education for our children,\" said parent Nichol Manning-Lassa.

The district wanted 2.5 million dollars for the next five years to fix a financial mess they say was created by Former Superintendent Kurt Wachholz. A claim he denied when we spoke with him in February.

Somehow, the district ended up in a 14 million dollar hole.

\"You can't point your finger at one person, I don't think.\"

Tuesday's vote shows the majority of taxpayers were not in favor of bailing out the district and footing the bill on their property taxes. The fallout leaves parents with tough decisions.

\"I've already looked into possibly going into Waukesha County.\"

\"The resources we have for them right now are excellent and until things get cut and until things get so bad that we would need to move we're here.\"

The superintendent plans to present a variety of budget cut proposals to the school board. In a letter to staff today he says:

While these cuts will not be easy, we know that our community has directed us to do what is necessary to secure fiscal stability for our district while working to provide a high quality education for our students.

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