SCAPE members speak out against ERS contract

At the January 29 school board meeting, SCAPE members Joanne Juhnke and Cris Carusi testified against the MMSD contract with ERS for consulting on a student services resource allocation model. The story was covered by the Cap Times:

Madison School Board approves $100,000 contract for staffing consultation

Here’s what they had to say:

“Given that we’ve got expertise right here in the district, I don’t see a need to spend our scarce dollars to bring in more out-of-state consultants,” Juhnke said. “Let’s listen to the folks on the ground who know what’s going on and start making the reality match the rhetoric.”

“ERS has questionable expertise in special education and restorative justice, but they have ample expertise in student-based budgeting,” Carusi said. “This is a hallmark of corporate school reform and the school choice movement, and it is not the right direction for MMSD.”

SCAPE opposed this contract. It passed on a 4-3 vote, with Mary Burke, Kate Toews, James Howard and Dean Loumos voting in favor, and Nicki Vander Meulen, Anna Moffit and TJ Mertz opposed.

SCAPE members pen op-eds on class size

SCAPE is working with the MTI Action Committee, the East Attendance Area PTO Coalition and the Westside PTO to address growing class sizes in the MMSD. We are specifically advocating for a budget amendment to reduce class sizes in our district. Three SCAPE members have had op-eds on class size published in the Cap Times:

Jennifer Wang:
Madison school board should prioritize reducing class size

Andy Waity:
Smaller class sizes a great way to help all students

Cris Carusi:
Share your thoughts on next Madison schools budget

These op-eds provide information on the issue of growing class sizes in the MMSD, as well as the research supporting the many benefits of small class sizes.