Deanna Alexander
Press Release

Committee Opposes Opportunities for MPS Students in Need

Policies Adopted to Prevent Elected Officials from Helping Milwaukee’s Children

By - Sep 18th, 2015 04:00 pm

MILWAUKEE—County Supervisor Deanna Alexander was the only person to vocally support creating opportunities for children attending low-performing MPS schools today at a meeting of the County Board’s Intergovernmental Relations Committee.

“Out of 426 school districts in the State of Wisconsin, the Opportunity Schools plan looks at the one performing at the very bottom, and looks at the 154 schools that district operates, focusing on just a handful of the lowest of the low, sub-par schools where the children are currently graduated grade to grade without even knowing how to read,” said Supervisor Alexander.

All other Supervisors present vehemently opposed the Opportunity Schools Partnership Program (OSPP), whereby the Milwaukee County Executive would appoint a Commissioner to oversee the turnaround of the Milwaukee Public School District’s lowest performing grade schools.

The resolution, authored by Supervisors Rainey and Weishan, creates a formal position of County opposition to the OSPP.  It also creates a County policy forbidding any person receiving a County pension from working as Commissioner of the program and bars all County employees and elected officials from any activities that would help the program.

“Opponents to the Opportunity Schools plan act like the sky is falling, when we should instead be seriously alarmed that there is a representative attitude in Milwaukee that politics, public union solidarity, and money is more important than the educational welfare of our kids,” Alexander said.

“We need to be thinking like a region, and if MPS, the City of Milwaukee, and Milwaukee County are going to rely on each other and on our neighbors for support, there shouldn’t be disdain for the response teams that are motivated to action when our kids need help,” she continued.

“People complain about systemic problems of poverty and joblessness and incarceration and ask what we will do to fix that.  I’ll tell you where we start: we make an all-hands-on-deck effort to keep those kids from falling through the cracks, and I’m not going to abandon the kids by supporting this misguided resolution,” said Alexander.

The Intergovernmental Relations Committee dissented on the Opportunity Schools and Partnership Program and supported policies banning County employee involvement in the OSPP on a 4-1 vote.

(AYE: Broderick, Cullen, Hass, Romo West, NO: Alexander, ABSENT: Dimitrijevic, Staskunas)

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