From EAG News:
MILWAUKEE – Two Wisconsin state lawmakers say legal action may be necessary to force the implementation of the Opportunity Schools and Partnership Program (OSPP) for troubled schools in Milwaukee.
Last year lawmakers created the program, giving the Milwaukee County Executive the right to identify and assume control over as many as three failing schools in the Milwaukee Public Schools district each year.
There are plenty to choose from. Almost 28,000 children attend MPS schools that have been identified by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction as failing to meet expectations.
But thus far the people who are supposed to be implementing the OSPP – Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele and Mequon-Thiensville Superintendent Demond Means – have failed to take decisive action.
They put forth a proposal for the structure of the program, with a heavy emphasis on compromise – allowing MPS to maintain some control over the failing schools, allowing the district to still receive state funding for those schools, and allowing current teachers to keep their jobs, salaries and benefits.
Despite that gentle approach, last week MPS officials announced they had rejected the plan, leaving the situation unsettled. MPS and teachers union officials have long objected to the program, calling it a state takeover of the schools.
But the fact is that Abele and Means reportedly have the legal power to move forward and implement the program, with or without the consent of MPS leaders.
“If the MPS board doesn’t join the program, Means could have an outside group…