ROCK COUNTY (WKOW) -- The list is out of the schools that will be involved in Wisconsin's expanded voucher program. 48 schools applied, but only the 25 with the most applicants were admitted.
In those 25 schools, more than 2,000 students applied. Two schools in our area made the list including Lighthouse Christian in Madison and Rock County Christian Schools in Beloit and Janesville. Lighthouse had 31 applicants and Rock County had 102.
"We're a small school. Our class sizes average about 12 to 15. So really, K-12 we're about 160 students," Rock County Christian School Administrator Tim Befus says.
RCCS came in 7th on the list of 25 schools who were accepted into the voucher program this year. Of the 102 applicants to their schools, 47 are already enrolled students. Administrators say they're families who are looking for a way to cover the $4,500 average tuition each year. The other 55 student applicants are first timers at the school.
"These families are looking for an alternative. We don't fit every family, but I think there's a good segment of the population down here that are interested in the solid education," Befus says.
Not every student will receive a voucher. Of the 2,069 students who applied only 500 will receive a voucher. The Department of Public Instruction will randomly draw ten students from each of the 25 schools. All the remaining student applicants will then go into one big drawing for the 250 vouchers that are left.
"Next week they will receive an e-mail if they're drawn if they are chosen that says they have five days to respond," Befus explains.
All unclaimed vouchers will then go into another drawing until all 500 are filled.
Administrators with RCCS say the program may just give them the boost in enrollment they need to expand their operation.
"Our school has had plans to grow and build a new building for the past ten to twelve years and that is dependent on enrollment," Befus says.
The school voucher program will expand to 1,000 students during the 2014-15 school year. The application process will start over again allowing more schools and students to apply.
Administrators at RCCS have already received calls from other private schools in the area who are for advice on how to apply next year.
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