Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers (left) and State Superintendent Carolyn Stanford Taylor shown during a tour of a Madison school in January. (Photo: Associated Press)

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Carolyn Stanford Taylor is seeking an additional $1.6 billion for education over the next two years, along with changes that would cushion districts as they weather the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

Stanford Taylor’s proposed 2021-23 budget, announced this week, reflects many of the same priorities as her predecessor, now-Gov. Tony Evers: an increase in special education funding and mental health resources, a focus on equity, and restoring the state’s commitment to fund two-thirds of the cost of education.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged our schools in ways never seen before. It magnified many existing inequities in our state and highlighted essential areas where our students and educators need further support,” Stanford Taylor said in a statement announcing the $16.275