APPLETON - The schools have applied and now it's time for interested parents to take action when it comes to the state's voucher program.
Wednesday, the state released its list of schools which registered to be part of the newly-expanded program.
And parents in those schools can start applying as early as Thursday.
Several area schools and systems are on that list.
The vouchers use taxpayer money to pay for students from lower income families to attend private schools.
Teachers are just beginning to prepare their classrooms at St. Nicholas Catholic School in Freedom. And school officials hope to see a few extra heads in the hallways this year.
"For rural schools, this is an answer for any Catholic or non-public school to thrive rather than just survive," explained Principal Rose Mary Perrino.
St. Nicholas was one of 48 schools in 39 communities which could potentially receive vouchers. In our area, 19 applications were received from an individual school or a group of schools from ten communities.
That includes Appleton, Green Bay, Oshkosh and Sheboygan.
"Not being one of the larger systems, this may not be our year, but everything is filled out and I can be hopeful for it," Perrino said.
Only the 25 schools which receive the most applicants will get the vouchers and the total number of students statewide is limited to 500.
Parents can apply Thursday.
"I know we have appointments scheduled from 7:30 in the morning until 5pm, as well as some after hours," explained St. Francis Xavier Catholic School System President Deacon Ray DuBois
Those with the St. Francis Xavier Catholic School System in Appleton say so far, they've seen a lot of interest from area parents.
They're hoping to make the final cut.
"We're optimistic, we know we have had a lot of phone calls, I know we have full days of appointments of potential families," DuBois said.
Parents have until August ninth to apply.
To participate, family incomes have to be less than 185-percent of the federal poverty level.
In general, that means an income limit of $44,000 a year for a family of four.
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