Board president, superintendent to discuss higher standards, new state school report cards

MILWAUKEE (September 26, 2012) – Milwaukee Board of School Directors President Michael Bonds and Milwaukee Public Schools Superintendent Gregory Thornton will hold a forum on Saturday to discuss the internationally-competitive Common Core State Standards and how they will help MPS meet the new higher standards the district is embracing as the state releases new school report cards.

The forum is set for Saturday, September 29 from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at MPS’ School of Career and Technical Education, 5075 N. Sherman Boulevard, Milwaukee 53209.

In early October, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction is set to release new school report cards that raise the bar for success. Under the new report cards, which rely upon definitions of success that come from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), schools across the state will see declines in the percentage of students who are considered on track for career and college success. The results do not mean students are achieving less; they mean MPS and schools across Wisconsin are recognizing that more work needs to be done.

“We embrace those higher standards,” Bonds said. “And we know that we continue to take the action that will truly prepare our children for college and career success.”

That action includes the district’s Comprehensive Literacy Plan and Comprehensive Math/Science Plan, which are aligned with the rigorous and internationally-competitive Common Core State Standards. Those standards mark a radical shift in K12 education – moving students toward mastery of critical topics and preparing them to compete against students from across the U.S. and around the world. Other steps MPS is taking to meet higher standards include expanding use of Response to Intervention to make better use of data; expanding use of the Danielson model to help identify and improve quality instruction; and developing 10 GE Demonstration schools with model classrooms from which all schools can all learn.

Bonds, who represents the Board’s third district, invites parents, families, neighbors and the community at large to attend this important event.

Milwaukee Public Schools is Wisconsin’s largest school district, serving 80,000 students in more than 160 schools across the city. U.S. News and World Report named MPS’ Rufus King International School and Ronald Wilson Reagan College Preparatory High School the two best high schools in the state and among the 200 best in the country in 2012. In the past year, Milwaukee Public Schools posted a growing graduation rate 17 points higher than the rate for the class of 2000.