WSSWA Legislative Committee

Legislative Chair: Murrene Payton

School Social Work Association of America delegate: Kelly Ohme

Legislative Consultant/Lobbiest: Jack O’Meara

WSSWA Government Relations Representative or (608) 294-8746

WSSWA Goes to Washington!

On June 19-21, 2019, President-Elect Angela Baerwolf and WSSWA Delegate Kelly Ohme attended the Delegate Assembly hosted by SSWAA.  They came together with other state affiliates to discuss how to be an effective board, as well as how to better engage YOU, our members.

Kelly was joined by Legislative Chair Murrene Payton and board member Susan Baumann-Duren on June 21-23 for the Legislative Institute.  The three met with the offices of Senators Baldwin and Johnson, as well as Representatives Sensenbrenner and Pocan, to advocate for issues important to school social workers.  They covered such topics as:

  • Increase federal investment in education
  • Provide adequate funding for ESSA, a student support and academic enrichment grant
  • Increase school mental health services
  • Provide a path to citizenship for DACA individuals

Legislative News

Wisconsin School Social Workers Association Legislative Tracker

Updated: 10/12/2021



WSSWA Position

Activity and Status

Sen. Agard

Recognizes February as Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month.


2/16/21 Passed Senate. 

3/11/21 Read and referred to committee on Rules


Rep. Stubbs

Proclaims that racism and racial inequity constitute a health crisis in Wisconsin.


2/18/21 Referred to Assembly Rules Committee.

3/16/21 Rep Stubbs added amendment

AB 68/SB 111

Introduced by Joint Finance Committee at request of Governor Evers

Governor Evers’ 21-23 state budget; More than $1.5 billion in new K-12 education funding; $46.5 million more for school mental health program that pays for school social workers, and expands program to cover other pupil service professionals; Includes many other positive proposals. 


2/16/21 Introduced and referred to Joint Finance Committee; Agency briefings and public hearings to take place in April; Votes will then be taken in committee, then in both houses of the Legislature; Budget then goes back to Governor for his signature with partial vetoes (Wisconsin governors have one of the most powerful partial veto pens in the country), or complete veto; Budget provides funding for 7/1/21 to 6/30/23.

6/29/21 Read third time and passed (Ayes 64 Noes 34)

6/30/21 Read third time and concurred (Ayes 23 Noes 9)

7/8/21 Published 7/9/21

AB 141

Rep. Myers

Prohibits discrimination based on traits historically associated with race, including hair texture and protective hairstyles.


3/5/21 Introduced and referred to the Constitution and Ethics Committee; 4/20/21 Public hearing held.

SB 251

Sen. Taylor

Same as above.


3/31/21 Introduced and referred to Labor and Regulatory Reform Committee.

AB 185

Rep. Billings

Prosecuting or adjudicating delinquent a person under the age of 18 for committing an act of prostitution.


3/23/21 Introduced and referred to Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee.

SB 245

Sen. Darling

Same as above.


3/24/21 Introduced and referred to Judiciary and Public Safety Committee; 9/23/21 Public hearing held.

AB 196

Rep. Dittrich

Designates sports and athletics teams based on the sex of the participants.


3/25/21 Introduced and referred to Education Committee; 5/26/21 Public hearing held; 6/9/21 Voted out of committee on 9-4 vote; 6/16/21 Passed Assembly on 59-38 vote.

SB 322

Sen. Bernier

Same as above.


4/22/21 Introduced and referred to Human Services, Children and Families Committee; 5/26/21 Public hearing held.

AB 273

Rep. Myers

Requires instruction in African American history in elementary school and high school.


4/16/21 Introduced and referred to Education Committee.

AB 312

Rep. Snodgrass

Prohibits conversion therapy


5/7/21 Introduced and referred to Mental Health Committee.  

SB 326

Sen. Carpenter

Same as above


4/28/21 Introduced and referred to Human Services, Children and Families Committee.

AB 381

Rep. Snyder

Requires instruction in Hmong American, Asian Pacific Islander, and Desi Americans.


6/7/21 Introduced and referred to Education Committee.

SB 379

Sen. Wimberger

Same as above.


5/25/21 Introduced and referred to Education Committee.

AB 411

Rep. Wichgers

Prohibits schools from teaching race or sex stereotyping.


6/25/21 Introduced and referred to Education Committee; 8/11/21 Public hearing held (WSSWA presented testimony); 9/23/21 Passed out of committee on 10-5 vote; 9/28/21 Passed Assembly on 60-38 vote.

SB 411

Sen. Jacque

Same as above.


6/10/21 Introduced and referred to Education Committee; 8/11/21 Public hearing held (WSSWA presented testimony.

AB 562

Rep. Cabral-Guevara

Requires school districts - before providing any program related to sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, or gender expression - to first give notice to parents or guardians, who can choose to opt out of the program.


9/15/21 Introduced and referred to Education Committee.

SB 598

Sen. Jacque

Same as above.


10/8/21 Introduced and referred to Education Committee.

Clearinghouse Rule 19-166

Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS)

Proposed by Marriage and Family Therapy, Professional Counseling and Social Work Examining Board; Prohibits conversion therapy by members of these professions.


WSSWA presented testimony supporting rule in May 2020; Two legislative committees objected to rule; Legislature now needs to introduce alternative legislation; If Governor vetoes legislation and Legislature is not able to over-ride veto with two-thirds votes, which appears very likely, rule will go into effect.

Clearinghouse Rule 20-082

Department of Public Instruction (DPI)

Creates additional pathway for an MSW to obtain Tier II SSW license.


Rule currently before Legislature.

9/29/21 Public Hearing Held

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