MADISON, Wis. – State Rep. Joel Kitchens (R-Sturgeon Bay) released the following statement upon learning that he has been named the chairman of the Assembly Committee on Education for the 2023-24 legislative session:
“I am deeply honored that Assembly leadership has put their trust in me to be the next chair of the Assembly Education Committee. My top priority as chairman will be advancing legislation that improves educational opportunities and outcomes for all children across Wisconsin.
“We have the largest achievement gap between white and Black students in the nation and that should be unacceptable to all of us. Furthermore, close to 65 percent of fourth graders in our state are not proficient readers, with 34 percent failing to meet even basic standards. It is essential that we do better in this area because reading is the key to learning.
“I also believe that we need to address the learning loss that resulted from the COVID-19 pandemic. This hit underprivileged kids the hardest. Additionally, I want to encourage parents to get involved in their children’s education and give them options to participate.”
Rep. Kitchens, who previously was the chair of the Assembly Environment Committee, will now be the vice chairman of that committee. He also will continue to serve as a member of the Committee on Agriculture and the Committee on Tourism.