Press Release: Gov. Evers Responds to 2021 State of Education Address

Office of Governor Tony Evers
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 23, 2021 
Gov. Evers Reacts to 2021 State of Education Address  
MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers today congratulated Dr. Jill Underly’s first State of Education Address as the State Superintendent of Public Instruction. In a video response, Gov. Evers reacted to Superintendent Underly’s address, underscoring his continued commitment to working together to do what’s best for our kids.  

The governor’s video message is available here and a transcription of the video is available below.   

Hello! Today, I want to congratulate Dr. Jill Underly on her first State of Education Address as State Superintendent of Public Instruction.  

Dr. Underly and I are both former teachers, so we know firsthand that what’s best for our kids is what’s best for our state. And that’s also why we agree on that our kids come first, which means putting our kids before politics and divisiveness.   

Our schools are the hearts of our community—from our Pre-K and early childhood education providers to our higher education institutions.  

Every kid, every day—no matter what zip code they live in or their family’s economic status—deserves to have the support, the resources, and the service they need to thrive.   

As Superintendent Underly put it, there is an opportunity gap—that’s something I've been working on to address for a decade.    

If we’re going to make sure every kid has the chance to be successful in the state, then we have to invest in our kids and our schools.  

And it also means investing in our students of color, our kids experiencing homelessness or poverty, kids with IEPs, and English language learners.   

It means delivering on our constitutional obligation to provide our kids with disabilities and special needs the best education and resources possible.   

It means supporting and hiring passionate, dedicated, and skilled teachers—especially teachers who understand and share the experiences of students of color.  

It means investing in and supporting our kids’ needs, whether it’s their social, emotional, and mental health needs, or technology, programming, and curricula.   

And it means coming together to do what’s best for our kids because I know that when we put our kids first, we will not only get through the challenges of this pandemic but build a stronger, more equitable public education system for years to come.   

We made great strides in our last budget—finally reaching two-thirds funding for our public schools for the first time in two decades and making another critical increase for special education. But Superintendent Underly and I both know we still have much work to do.   

I look forward to working together with Superintendent Underly and the DPI to meet the needs of every kid from Pre-K through college, to trust and support our teachers, and to do what’s best for our kids by putting them first.   

Thank you.