JANESVILLE (WKOW) -- The campuses of Rock County Christian school open for students next week, but for the Grams family in Janesville, the prospects of brothers Jacob and Cameron attending remain up-in-the-air, with the boys still on a waiting list for school choice vouchers.
"We were really kind of hoping that would be a good alternative for them," Holly Grams tells 27 News.
A lottery has determined the five hundred children who qualify to attend private schools with public dollars in Wisconsin's expansion of the school choice program.
At Rock County Christian, twenty nine students are guaranteed admission through school choice. School administrator Tim Befus says another sixty-two, including the Grams boys, must wait and hope for the unlikely chance to gain similar enrollment.
Department of Public Instruction spokesperson John Johnson tells 27 News the statewide, waiting list pool for school choice enrollment is already prioritized through the lottery draw. Johnson says the priority ranking is based on the waiting children, and not how many slots any participating school may have. Johnson says a school's capacity for choice children only comes into play, if a priority child's preferred choice school is full.
Slots for children on the waiting list could open up, if already accepted students decide to forego admission. Students who received school choice enrollment slots have five days to accept admission.
Holly Grams says it's a long-shot her sons will gain entrance to Rock County Christian, so the boys have been enrolled in public schools in Janesville.
Grams tells 27 News private school attendance would be a natural progression in her children's home schooling history. "To be in a small school, but most likely, we'll have to wait another year before we'd be able to get in."
Befus says about half of the students on the waiting list for admission through the school choice program are already attending Rock County Christian.
Johnson says the school choice program covers tuition and other school costs for children in families up to 185% of the federal poverty level.
Johnson says it could be October before the placement of the expanded school choice program's five hundred students is finalized.
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