As for charter schools, Blaska says the more the better. “Competition is what made America great,” he says. “My whole pitch is to bring Madison schools back to their former excellence status and we’ve gone the opposite way. We have parents voting with their feet.”
Muldrow supports charter schools — like Nuestro Mundo — that are overseen by the district, because they create an opportunity to develop creative curriculum. She notes that two independent charter schools — Isthmus Montessori Academy, where her daughters go, and One City Schools — would prefer to be part of the district. Both applied but were rejected.
To address the achievement gap, Blaska sees a lack of discipline as the problem and would revise the district’s Behavior Education Plan. Muldrow champions making arts a core part of curriculum. She’d also encourage the district to step back from standardized testing and make schools more inclusive and welcoming.
“Our attachment to ‘sit still, in a desk, fill out a worksheet,’ I don’t think we’re attached to that because it’s a necessity of learning, I think were attached to it because we’re used to it,” Muldrow says. “And I think we’re attached to the achievement gap because we’re used to it. And I think that we need to get used to something else.”
Much more on the 2019 Madison School District election, here.
Madisonspends far more than most taxpayer supported K-12 school districts, now around $20,000 per student. Yet, we’ve long tolerated disastrous reading results.