MILWAUKEE – Milwaukee Public Schools will welcome back students to its 12 year-round schools Monday as the district continues to focus on accelerating student achievement, building positive relationships between youth and adults and cultivating leadership at all levels.
A kickoff event is set for 7:15 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 4 at MPS’ Silver Spring School, a K4-5 elementary school located in the Lincoln Park neighborhood on the northeast side at 5131 N. Green Bay Avenue, Milwaukee 53209.
Key efforts for the 2014-15 school year include:
- The designation of 14 Commitment Schools to transform low-performing schools into high-performing schools through the implementation of rigorous academic and behavioral interventions with increased resources to achieve greater college and career readiness
- School support teachers in every school to help improve instruction by working directly with educators in their classrooms
- 50 new art, music and physical education specialist teaching positions in MPS schools, part of a total of 142 new such positions added over three years
- Continued implementation of the district’s Comprehensive Literacy Plan and Comprehensive Math and Science Plan, which are tied to the Common Core State Standards to set a clear, high bar for what students must master in each grade to stay on track for college and career success
- Providing additional support for behavioral health services for early childhood and primary grade students in need
- Launching a new student information system to better serve families and improve student records management
- Parent coordinators in every school to build stronger relationships between families and schools
- Implementation of a new program available to schools participating in the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs called the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP)
- Further implementation of a new educator evaluation system designed to identify and grow excellent teaching and school leadership practices
- Further development of the leadership pipeline to strengthen school and district administration
- A new employee wellness initiative
“The teaching and learning that occurs in every classroom is our core business and I am pleased that we are starting the school year off strong with our year-round educators and students,” MPS Acting Superintendent Dr. Darienne Driver said. “We will continue to raise the bar and improve outcomes for students in our schools.”
Start of the school year events are also scheduled for Aug. 11, when schools on MPS’ Rufus King/Reagan calendar begin, and on Sept. 4, the first day for the majority of MPS schools, those on the traditional calendar.
As Milwaukee Public Schools continues to expand high-quality educational programs to meet the demands of families across the city, other changes from 2013-14 to 2014-15 include:
- Golda Meir School for the Gifted and Talented is adding grade 9 as it expands into high school grades in a once-closed MPS school building
- Howard Avenue Montessori School is adding grade 1 as it continues to grow in a once-closed MPS school building
- Carmen High School of Science and Technology – Northwest Campus is adding grades 7 and 10 as it moves toward serving grades 6-12 in a once-closed MPS school building
- Hamlin Garland School, Hayes Bilingual School, Milwaukee College Prep – 38th Street Campus, Milwaukee Environmental Sciences, Universal Academy for the College Bound and Walt Whitman School all add grades as they continue or complete their transition to serving grades K4-8
- NOVA Tech, a new charter high school, is opening
- ALAS High School is merging into South Division High School in the building the schools share
- Barack Obama K-8 School and the School of Career and Technical Education, a high school, are merging to create one K-12 school in the building they share
- Transformation Learning Community is merging into Transition High School in the building they share
- Alliance School, Bay View Middle and High School and Eighty-First (81st) Street School begin, complete or continue phasing out middle school grades as they focus on serving high school students in the case of Alliance and Bay View – and elementary students in the case of Eighty-First Street
- Kosciuszko Montessori School, which shared a building with a growing bilingual school, and Milwaukee Excel High School, which operated in a non-MPS building, closed at the end of the 2013-14 school year
The beginning of the school year comes as MPS prepares to welcome leaders from 60 of the nation’s large city school districts as the district hosts the Council of the Great City Schools 58th Annual Fall Conference in October.