MADISON – The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee will present a model contract for its proposed new charter schools to the Board of Regents for its approval at the May 6-7 meeting at UW-Parkside.

The draft contract will provide the framework for negotiations with organizations interested in operating charter schools under the auspices of UW-Milwaukee. Seven organizations have indicated interest in operating such schools. Two organizations, the Milwaukee Urban League and the Milwaukee Science Consortium, are currently at the contract negotiation stage.

Originally, Wisconsin law allowed only school boards the authority to charter a school. In the 1997-99 state budget, UW-Milwaukee, the Milwaukee Area Technical College and the City of Milwaukee were also granted the authority to establish charter schools for students residing in Milwaukee. UW-Milwaukee decided it would sponsor, but not operate, one or more charter schools.

Each charter school contract would have a unique mission and goals. The Milwaukee Urban League charter school would have an emphasis on business and economics for K-12 students, while the Milwaukee Science Consortium’s emphasis would be science and math for K-12 students. It is projected that these charter schools might be opened by the fall of 2000.

UW-Milwaukee will closely monitor and evaluate the progress of these new schools to better understand their impact on public education, and to ensure that they meet fundamental standards of public accountability in the areas of solid fiscal management and standards for high achievement.


Lorre Kolb