Teachers union accuses Milwaukee Health Department of giving ‘special access’ to private schools during pandemic

Daniel Bice:

As the city was finishing work on a guide for reopening schools in the fall, a small group of charter and private school leaders sat down with health officials to raise concerns with a key section.

The lobbying effort worked.

Steve Baas, a lobbyist with the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce, let the workgroup know that he had just talked to two city health officials, Claire Evers and Marlaina Jackson. They would be changing a section of the guide, he said, that would let these schools continue to operate during limited coronavirus outbreaks under certain conditions.

“After yesterday’s meeting they took the concerns raised by the group to their public health leadership team and the mayor,” Baas wrote to the private and charter school leaders on Aug. 7. “As a result, they have been given the go-ahead to return to our previous … policy with several additions to deal with possible outbreaks at a school.”