Madison Metropolitan School District
Madison, Wisconsin

Art Rainwater, Superintendent
Minutes for Performance and Achievement
December 19, 2005
Doyle Administration Building
545 West Dayton Street, McDaniels Auditorium
Madison, Wisconsin

Performance and Achievement Committee meeting was called to order by Chair Shwaw Vang at 6:39 p.m.

MEMBERS PRESENT: Bill Keys, Ruth Robarts, Shwaw Vang


OTHER BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT: Carol Carstensen, Lawrie Kobza, Juan José López (arrived 7:05 p.m.), Johnny Winston, Jr.


STAFF PRESENT: Sue Abplanalp, Rita Applebaum, Mary Gulbrandsen, Pam Nash, Art Rainwater, Mary Ramberg, Loren Rathert, Ken Syke, Ann Wilson - Recording Secretary

1. Approval of Minutes

It was moved by Ruth Robarts and seconded by Bill Keys to approve the Performance and Achievement Committee minutes dated November 14, 2005 as distributed. Motion unanimously carried.

2. Public Appearances

Jeff Henriques asked the committee to review the data on West's ninth grade English curriculum before eliminating course options with the tenth grade English redesign. He believes the faculty has concerns about whether the current curriculum meets the needs of all students; struggling students are not succeeding. Find out why the ninth grade curriculum is not working and address what needs to be done. Reviewing the instructional design needs to apply to the high schools as well as the middle schools.

Lawrence Winkler - The district needs a focused effort to assure that all curriculums meet the needs of all students. Core issues need to be addressed; need for rigor in all. We know what is happening in classrooms through assessments; teachers will be assessed on teaching practices. Issue is the need for a standardized set of assessments.

3. Announcements

There were no announcements.

4. Overview of the Work of the Middle Grades Design Team to Develop a Consistent Curriculum for 6th, 7th, and 8th Grade Students

(Packets included the Executive Summary of the Middle School Design Team dated 12/14/05; Summaries of the Focus Group Meetings; mail-in responses; and completed surveys - copies are attached to the original of these minutes.)

Pam Nash gave a brief update of the work of the Design Team since the last presentation to this committee. She focused on the information received at focus group meetings which was very helpful. She noted that the mission of the Design Team remains the same - to look at consistency, move toward rigorous curriculum, and not lose sight of the crucial middle school development time for students.


All areas need review including Language Arts, Social Studies and Science.

Focus of consistent curriculum is to provide the same experience to students in all schools.

Measurement of rigor - setting up courses and the rubric for measuring rigor.


Ruth Robarts requested another forum be scheduled after the recommendations have been presented by the Design Team and before those recommendations become part of the budget process.

There was discussion about the timeline for recommendations and whether the committee would have sufficient time to review them. Art Rainwater indicated the process calls for the recommendations to come to him for review and that the Design Team would need to do some further work before he submits them to the Committee as his recommendations. Shwaw Vang requested that along with the recommendations the Superintendent provide the advantages and disadvantages of each. It was requested that the Performance and Achievement Committee receive the draft recommendations at the time they are again provided to focus groups. The Superintendent indicated a draft is planned to be ready by mid-January.


Parents and community expect academic excellence. All concerns need to be heard.

Need to keep process as open as possible.

All information available on the website. Will consider all views and recommendations but there will be suggestions that are not included in the recommendations.

5. Other Business

There was no other business.

6. Adjournment

It was moved by Bill Keys and seconded by Ruth Robarts to adjourn the meeting at 7:25 p.m. Motion unanimously carried.