Expert weighs in on MPS's troubled financial situation

Posted at 5:44 PM, Apr 11, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-11 18:45:11-04

On the heels of a heated MPS budget discussionTuesday night, Senior Fellow at Marquette Law School, Alan Borsuk, weighed in on the district’s troubled financial situation.

The district said it’s facing a $30 million deficit and cuts have to made somewhere. 

“Is this the worst crisis MPS has had in my twenty plus years of following this pretty closely? And maybe I’m short-circuiting my memory, but I’d say yes,” said Borsuk. 

Borsuk has covered education in this city since the early 1970s. He was a reporter with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel then. He said at this point, district needs outside help. 

“Whether it’s the Governor, whether the Mayor, whether it’s the business community, there are people who care, there are people who have been stepping up, but we need a lot more than what we’ve had so far,” Borsuk said. 

Tuesday night, hundreds of MPS teachers packed a school board meeting taking turns at the podium to express frustration over proposed cuts. 

One calls for increasing employees’ co-pays. Another proposal would get rid of healthcare coverage to MPS spouses who can get insurance somewhere else.

MPS parent and special education teacher, Melissa Patterson, addressed the board Tuesday night. 

“I understand budgets. I get it. I have one in my house. I balance it. It works. You want us to help balance this? Ask us,” said Patterson. 

Another school board meeting is set for Tuesday and at that meeting cuts to bussing in the district will be discussed. 

MPS said a final draft of the budget will be presented to the school board early next month. 

“So what’s the future? I don’t know but it’s something people should be really concerned about,” said Borsuk.