MPS School Board Victory

On September 19th, twenty Common Ground leaders, students, parents and speakers attended the MPS Accountability, Finance and Personal School Board Committee (AF&P).

Largely due to Common Ground’s hard work and commitment, the committee moved towards approval of some much needed changes to Milwaukee Public School’s after school tutoring program.  The full MPS Board will vote on final approval on Thursday, September 27th.

Common Ground demonstrated to Dr. Thornton, MPS Staff, Directors Bonds, Voeltner, Sain and Miller that we are committed to seeing a process through to get the best results for our children.

The changes are significant, including:

  •  The ratio of how many students can be tutored at one time. It had previously been 1:10. Now it’s 1:1 to 1:5 max.
  • The rate at which tutors were allow to charge. Some tutors had been charging up to $108 per hour, per student. Now that rate is locked to $35 per hour, per student, for one hour, two times per week.
  • The entity in charge of driving the enrollment process and making sure that there is quality control. Previously this was up to the individual for-profit tutoring companies. Now it is the responsibility of the district.
  • Only one provider will be assigned to each school instead of having as many providers in a school as wanted to be there.  This will facilitate communication and relationship between the provider & staff at that school, making curriculum alignment more manageable and achievable.

The planning of this action came at the perfect time – coinciding with the State’s application to get a waiver for the No Child Left Behind Act.

Actions like these are an encouraging lesson for Common Ground. In the words of our Lead Organizer, Keisha Krumm, “People knew these abuses to our after school tutoring programs were happening but no one thought they could take it on. Common Ground had the courage to say ‘Look. This is not right.’ Beyond shedding light on the problem, we were able to bring solutions to the table.”