Will political winds blow Milwaukee ‘opportunity schools’ away?

Alan Borsuk:

There are so many questions for which I don’t have answers. These are just a few of them:

What will happen to the school reform idea put under the control of the Milwaukee County executive — officially known as the Opportunity Schools Partnership Program — if state Sen. Chris Larson wins election to the office in April? Larson is adamantly opposed to cooperating with the effort, which was created by Republicans in the state Legislature.

What will happen to the idea if Chris Abele wins re-election as county executive? He’s sort of gone along with the idea and named Mequon-Thiensville Superintendent Demond Means as commissioner of education for Milwaukee. But, three months after the appointment, I don’t know what, if anything, is going to result. Means has made it clear he’s not going to do dramatic stuff like take schools away from the Milwaukee Public Schools system.

Are we just waiting until after the April election — or maybe the November election — to see what, if anything, the “opportunity schools” idea will bring? Will the politicians who thought this was a way to kick a few MPS schools into some kind of higher gear want to see more or different action?

Is the “opportunity schools” idea so flawed that we’re better off if nothing happens?

If the title of “education commissioner” doesn’t really mean anything, can I have it, just for kicks? It would look good on a business card.

A whole different front: What am I supposed to think of the change being made in who runs Community High School? This is a small school and maybe a small matter, but it’s much on my mind.

Community was created in 2004 as a charter school within the MPS system. It has been led by two MPS teachers, Jason O’Brien and Roxane Mayeur, and its aim has been to offer “a safe, supportive, and personalized high school experience” that included partnerships with community groups to get students involved in helping people.