MPS

Rachel Morello

Some of the biggest education stories in Milwaukee this year dealt with decisions elected leaders made in the statehouse.

2016 marked a year of uncharted territory for both public K-12 and higher education in Milwaukee.

Michelle Maternowski

Updated December 23, 2016:

The Milwaukee School Board approved Thursday earlier start dates for all district high schools, International Baccalaureate and year-round schools for the 2017-18 academic year. 

It's one of several changes the district will pursue, as part of a rigorous reform agenda from Superintendent Darienne Driver.

Bill McChesney/Flickr

The relationship in Milwaukee between public schools and private choice schools has long been a contentious, or at least a competitive oneState funding comes attached to thousands of students who can attend either sector at public expense. Now, the concern is transportation.

iQoncept, fotolia

new set of state report cards confirmed Thursday that the Milwaukee Public School district is improving. But the math has changed, breeding skepticism about how much improvement is actually taking place.

Districts across Wisconsin and each of their individual schools are ranked in one of five categories: 

Rachel Morello

The superintendent of Milwaukee Public Schools is putting forward some big ideas for change in her district. This week, Darienne Driver presented the MPS board with a slate of reforms designed to boost achievement.

Rachel Morello

One of the city’s most successful charter school networks, Milwaukee College Prep, has just moved closer to MPS.

Rachel Morello

According to the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, Milwaukee Public School is no longer required to take part in OSPP, the state's Opportunity Schools and Partnership Program.

This comes after months of drama surrounding that initiative, and the resignation of the person who was supposed to head it in Milwaukee.

The state legislature created OSPP in 2015, as a way to turn around struggling school districts across the state. Any district that falls in the lowest category on a state report card, for two consecutive years, is required to participate.

Courtney Carmody, Flickr

Struggling Milwaukee public schools are in limbo.

The first day of classes is right around the corner, and they don’t know if they’re going to get picked for the state’s new Opportunity Schools and Partnership Program.

Michelle Maternowski

The fight for school turf continues on Milwaukee’s Northeast side.

A military-style school for at-risk kids wants to buy a former Milwaukee Public School building in the Riverwest area.

Earlier this week, the City of Milwaukee approved the sale but still has to decide whether the school is the right fit for the neighborhood.

Many residents in the area say it’s not, and they told city officials as much during a meeting Thursday night. They’re concerned about some of the program’s tactics. 

Senator Scott Fitzgerald, Facebook

Reaction is intensifying to state efforts to intervene in low-performing Milwaukee Public Schools.

It began bubbling to the surface Wednesday, when the leader of the state’s Opportunity Schools and Partnership Program, quit. 

Rachel Morello

Mequon-Thiensville Superintendent Demond Means announced Wednesday that he is stepping down from his post as commissioner of the state-mandated MPS turnaround program, indicating the process has become too adversarial.

Rachel Morello

Thursday marks a big deadline for Milwaukee Public Schools. It’s the day district officials must decide what they think should be done for failing MPS schools.

It’s a decision almost two years in the making. State legislators created the framework for a turnaround program in 2015, and debate has raged over the program’s design, even its mere existence, ever since.

Rachel Morello

Update, 3:45p.m.: In a joint statement Friday afternoon, County Executive Abele and Commissioner Means expressed their disappointment about MPS' decision regarding the duo's OSPP proposal -- and offered district leaders another chance to join them. 

Rachel Morello

Milwaukee Public Schools' Board of Directors voted to pass a 2017 budget plan at their monthly meeting Thursday night. 

We know what you might be thinking: budgets are dense. Lots of numbers, figures and heavy education-related jargon. 

Rachel Morello

When school budgets are tight, arts programming is typically the first thing to go. That's not been the case lately in Milwaukee Public Schools.

Since 2012, the district has put an emphasis on music, dance, theater and visual arts, adding teachers and class time when possible.

And the powers that be are taking notice. MPS will soon receive some more federal funding to help bring art into other parts of the school building.

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