Who’s Pulling the Milwaukee Public School Takeover Strings?

Lisa Kaiser:

National pro-privatization organizations led by former Milwaukee Journal Sentinel education reporter Joe Williams and backed by Wall Street hedge fund managers are emerging as a driving force behind the mayoral takeover of the Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS).
Williams is the executive director of the affiliated groups named Democrats for Education Reform (DFER) and Education Reform Now (ERN), based in New York City. ERN has a nine-month-old chapter in Wisconsin, and DFER has branches in Wisconsin, Colorado, Michigan, Missouri and New Jersey.
The Wisconsin state director of both groups, Katy Venskus, has been lobbying in support of the pro-mayoral takeover Senate Bill 405, authored by state Sen. Lena Taylor and state Rep. Pedro Colon.
Venskus also has organized a group of Milwaukee business leaders–including Julia Taylor of the Greater Milwaukee Committee, Tim Sheehy of the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce and Tim Sullivan of Bucyrus International–to push for a mayor-appointed superintendent of MPS with enhanced executive powers.

2 thoughts on “Who’s Pulling the Milwaukee Public School Takeover Strings?”

  1. I understand Milwaukee is Wisconsins largest school district and that it has been failing for years to meet standards of similar school districts., Failure to educate by the numbers of students who fail to graduate etc.Something needs to change,money is being spent and is not getting acceptable results.Changing nothing continues to harm students and taxpayers.Having the school system adminisratively connected to the Mayor should offer a different financial accountability,lets give it an opportuity!

  2. I don’t agree with a Mayor’s takeover of the public schools in Milwaukee. I don’t agree with keeping the Milwaukee public schools under the current leadership. There are no facts to justify any decision.
    “Something needs to change, so blah-blah-blah ….”
    What is proposed for improvement is the same all over. Just do anything. Don’t understand what is not working, why it’s not working, where it’s not working, for whom it’s not working, how it’s not working, if it really is not working, if the schools are truly at fault, if it’s the teachers, if it’s the administrators, if the money is not being spent wisely/effectively, if it’s the schools of education, if it’s the parents, if it’s the kids, if it’s poverty, if it’s ….
    Truly, asking and answering the above looks uncomfortably like work and requires skill, persistence, and the possibility that one’s prejudices might not be validated if the effort is unbiased. The American people and their reps are simply not up to the task. The only thing that counts is the balance of unsupported opinion and how loud the cable chatterers are.
    All is a waste of time and money — just political theater and nothing more. It allows everyone their say, even if they have nothing useful to say. It’s a battle among brain-stems, not neo-cortexes.

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