Madison Metropolitan School District
Madison, Wisconsin

Art Rainwater, Superintendent
Minutes for Performance and Achievement
January 28, 2008
Doyle Administration Building
545 West Dayton Street, Auditorium
Madison, Wisconsin

Performance and Achievement Committee meeting was called to order by Chair Lawrie Kobza at 5:01 p.m.

MEMBERS PRESENT: Maya Cole, Lawrie Kobza, Johnny Winston, Jr.


OTHER BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT: Carol Carstensen, Beth Moss, Arlene Silveira


STAFF PRESENT: Steve Hartley, Attorney Dan Mallin, Pam Nash, Joe Quick, Art Rainwater, Marcia Standiford, Lisa Wachtel, Ann Wilson - Recording Secretary

1. Approval of Minutes

It was moved by Johnny Winston, Jr. and seconded by Maya Cole to approve the Performance and Achievement Committee minutes dated December 17, 2007 as distributed. Motion unanimously carried.

2. Public Appearances

Daniel Guerwasn - Opposed to changes in the Charter School Policy. He noted the additional benefits that Nuestro Mundo provides as a charter school. Changes are prohibitive to the development of future charter schools. There is no mandatory public hearing, no opportunity for developing a more detailed proposal. Changes prohibit the opportunity to be heard.

Sherman Hackbarth - There is a huge need for the services provided by charter schools. What are options for students graduating from Nuestro Mundo? Process is confusing, vague. Would like to see more people get together to create a charter school to meet the needs of the public.

Peter Joyce - Reject recommendations to change charter school policies. Could never have started Nuestro Mundo if the criteria had been any more difficult. Changes make it more difficult to form a charter school.

Bryan Grau - Wisconsin Charter School Association opposes proposed charter school policy revisions. Feel the current policy is more encouraging. Invited attendance at conference April 20.

Nancy Donahue - Revisions to charter school policy would call for fully developed proposals early and include no provision for appeal. Wait until the new Board and Superintendent are on board so they can provide input.

Lauren Cunningham - Hoped the Board would honor their intention to learn more about charter schools before making a decision. Check out the resources that are available before considering policy changes.

Senn Brown - Distributed written statement. Referenced Appleton guidelines. Why is the Madison (Board of Education) climate so negative toward charter schools? Policy will negatively and unfairly impact future Boards. Families will seek out the programs they want in other districts if they do not find them in Madison. Currently policy is a fair balance.

Sam Alvarado - Getting the Nuestro Mundo charter started was difficult. Opposed to making the process more difficult. There are many amazing ways to use charter schools. Nuestro Mundo is an amazing experience and he is proud to be part of it.

3. Announcements

There were no announcements.

4. Charter School Policy

(Written materials provided in advance: Legal Services Memo dated 11/21/2007 re: basic outline of a new policy chapter entitled, "Educational Options"; Charter Schools 10000 (10500?) Draft Policy dated 11/20/07; current MMSD Policy 10000 Charter Schools - all attached to the original of these minutes.)

Lawrie Kobza requested that Attorney Mallin review proposed changes to the Charter School Policy (as identified in the draft dated 11/20/07), particularly noting changes that public appearances speakers felt would be difficult. He described neither the current policy nor the proposed changes as any more or less encouraging (to submit a proposal); the proposed changes are an effort to receive more information earlier in the process. One of the first decision points is whether to direct school district resources to development of a detailed proposal. Timelines were slightly changed so that they are more practical for opening a new charter school.


Initiation of the process - advantages to working through process on an earlier timeframe.

Differences in statutory process - date changes/timelines more practical.

Less teachers required to initiate process - lower threshold for indication of interest.

Earlier proposal review provides feedback earlier but does not give power to deny. If Board's initial feedback does not support development of a proposal, it can be submitted under the statutory petition.

New process has no appeal process - old process did not have one either.

New process should have no/little affect on applying for DPI planning funds - moves timeline up. Can review if there are concerns.

Criteria in new policy regarding the initial proposal are the same as for the detailed proposal in current policy.

Board would provide encouragement to proposals it submits. Process now explicitly recognizes that the Board can.

Would like to see connection of the proposal with overall goals and mission of the district.

Proposed policy provides more time for consideration.

Additional public input and broader perspective.

Purpose is to clean up process/mechanics so new Board and Superintendent can deal with question of whether to encourage charter school development.

It was moved by Johnny Winston, Jr. and seconded by Maya Cole that the draft of Policy 10000 Charter Schools dated 11/20/07 be forwarded to the full Board of Education for further discussion. Motion unanimously carried.

5. Youth Options Policy

(Written materials provided in advance: Legal Services Memo dated 11/21/2007 re: basic outline of a new policy chapter entitled, "Educational Options"; and a draft policy for the Youth Options Program dated 11/20/2007 - attached to the original of these minutes.)

Lawrie Kobza stated that the Committee is looking at ways to organize opportunities for educational options in a single chapter in the Board policy manual. Attorney Mallin noted that there is information about the Youth Options program, but it may be difficult to locate. There has been some updating, but no major changes to the language.


State law allows a specific (district) cap on the credit limitation. Board previously adopted an 18 credit limitation. Intention is to limit liability - expenses. Also restricted to courses not offered in the district. Students are eligible for only 2 (junior and senior) years.

Question about whether on-line courses are included. Restricted to private and public universities in Wisconsin.

It was moved by Maya Cole and seconded by Johnny Winston, Jr. to recommend approval of the draft Youth Options Program policy dated 11/20/07. Motion unanimously carried.

6. Other Business

There was no other business.

7. Adjournment

It was moved by Johnny Winston, Jr. and seconded by Maya Cole to adjourn the meeting at 5:58 p.m. Motion unanimously carried.