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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Milwaukee parents choosing public schools, still

by folkbum

Third Friday, the big student-count day, just passed in Wisconsin. The state's Republicans, led by Governor Scott Walker and legislators like Alberta Darling, did everything they could to make the Milwaukee Public Schools a less-attractive choice: blowing out the enrollment cap and income requirements for the voucher program, expanding charter school options, gutting the MPS budget and pitting its teachers against its community. The prediction was MPS would lose between four and five thousand kids, or a 5% drop.

Reality? According to Board member Meagan Holman--I haven't seen this in the news yet--the total drop in enrollment was a mere 1%, about 800 students, which is actually low by recent trends.

Remarkably, Milwaukee's parents have seen the attacks on public education directed at us from Madison and AM radio and decided to stay. Good for them--and good for the schools, which find themselves in a better financial position than expected.

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