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Programs & Resources

Milwaukee Public Schools’ traditional programs in elementary schools offer strong curriculum tied to the rigorous Common Core State Standards, which eliminate the gap between what students know at graduation and what they need to know to succeed in college and careers. Many schools with a regular program also offer specialty coursework. In addition to regular programs, a number of MPS schools offer specialty programs as listed below.

At the middle/high school level, our college/career prep programs utilize the Common Core State Standards to focus on the knowledge students need to succeed upon graduation. The Common Core State Standards eliminate the gap between what students know at graduation and what they need to know to be successful in college, career training or the world of work.

In addition to the traditional and college/career prep programs, many schools offer additional programs.

Advanced Placement

Through Advanced Placement's college-level courses and exams, high school students can earn college credit, advanced placement and stand out in the admission process.

Specialty Schools

Neighborhood and citywide specialty schools offer special programs or areas of study, such as the arts, International Baccalaureate programming, Gifted and Talented programming, Montessori education or a language immersion program.

Early Childhood Education

Early childhood education is critical to students' future academic success. We offer Head Start and state-licensed early childhood centers in addition to kindergarten programming that begins at age 4 in most schools, with some offering kindergarten at age 3. Many early childhood classrooms feature small classrooms thanks to SAGE funding. A number of MPS schools include HighScope early childhood programming.

Head Start

Head Start is a federal program for 3- and 4-year olds that promotes the school readiness of children from low-income families. Parents must apply in person at the Head Start office at the MPS administration building at 5225 W. Vliet St., Room 9, Milwaukee, WI 53208. Call (414) 777-7850 for more information about the enrollment process.

Before- and After- School Programs

Most schools serving elementary grades in the Milwaukee Public Schools family include before- or after-school programming (or both) that provides academic enrichment for students outside of regular school hours.

Bilingual Education

MPS offers Spanish/English bilingual education, bilingual education for students of Asian descent and two-way bilingual education. Pupils are taught subjects in both English and their first language, helping the child maintain his or her first language while learning English. Two-way bilingual offers the English speaker an opportunity to learn Spanish. Both languages are used in the classroom.

Career & Tech Ed

Career and Technical Education develops and supports career-themed curriculum, work-based learning and community partnerships to prepare students for college and careers in high demand, high skill industries.

College & Career Readiness

Our goal is to prepare all students to succeed in college and careers. We offer countless college & career readiness programs aimed at preparing students for that success.

First Nations Studies

MPS offers programming specific to American Indian students at schools in which there are large concentrations of American Indian students with the goal of ensuring the students meet the same rigorous standards as all students. Services include native language revitalization classes and academic advisors.

GE Foundation Demonstration Schools

Ten MPS elementary schools are models for putting students on track to career and college readiness as GE Foundation Demonstration Schools. The schools develop innovative ways to put the rigorous Common Core State Standards into practice. The Common Core State Standards define what students learn at each grade.

Project Lead the Way (PLTW)

MPS is home to the nation's largest concentration of students involved in Project Lead the Way, a rigorous, nationally-recognized program that utilizes hands-on learning to connect students to science, technology, math and engineering. Students participating in PTLW in MPS boast stronger academic performance.

Special Education

MPS is proud to serve students identified as having disabilities and requiring Special Education and related services. And it's more than classroom education. There are nonacademic and extracurricular services and activities that give children with disabilities an equal opportunity for participation.

Uniform Policy

All MPS schools have a dress code, but students in a number of schools in the MPS family wear uniforms, creating a strong school identity.

Year-Round Schools

Milwaukee Public Schools offers a number of schools that use an alternative calendar to shorten the summer break and reduce the learning loss that occurs over that period of time. Those year-round schools have longer breaks at other points in the school year.

Comprehensive Literacy Plan

The MPS Comprehensive Literacy Plan (CLP) was designed to be a plan of action to increase Pre-K-Grade 12 Reading and English Language Arts achievement. The implementation of the CLP will guide the development of consistent quality literacy instruction, assessment and professional development across the district. Many stakeholders participated in the development of the CLP including school and cross-division district level staff as well as community and university partners.

Comprehensive Math & Science Plan

As a plan of action to improve PreK-12 student learning and achievement in Mathematics and Science, the MPS Comprehensive Math & Science Plan (CMSP) is designed to equip every student with the levels of rigor and relevance needed for success in college and career readiness.

Homeless Education Program

MPS strives to remove barriers to academic success for homeless children. The Office of Family Services has a Homeless Education Program which includes a school-based homeless contact in each MPS school to assist homeless children and families.

International Newcomer Center

The International Newcomer Center (INC) accommodates approximately 50 middle-school level students with two teachers and two specialists in English as a Second Language. Students in INC come from countries all over the world, including Burma, Eritrea, and Haiti.

Nursing and Health Services

MPS school nurses improve student achievement by removing health barriers to learning through the provision of quality nursing services to improve the health and well-being of all students.

English as a Second Language

English as a Second Language (ESL) programs are offered in a number of schools for immigrant students and others who do not speak English as their first language. Students are given special help in learning English, but the help may not always be given in their first language. The ESL class may include students speaking several different languages, all learning English. Click to see a list of schools with ESL programs.

Response to Intervention/PBIS

The RtI framework is designed with both the teacher and student in mind. It promotes the success of all students by providing a systematic and integrated system of supports based on quality instruction, common core state standards, and interventions matched to students' academic and behavioral needs. Visit the Response to Intervention/PBIS in MPS website for more information.

Student Achievement Guarantee in Education (SAGE)

The SAGE program was established in the 1996-97 school year to improve student achievement through the implementation of four specific school-improvement strategies. SAGE schools enter renewable 5-year contracts designed to promote academic achievement through lower class sizes in the primary grades. Schools receive state aid up to $2,250 for each low-income K-3 child.


TEAM GEAR UP serves a cohort of students in two grades (the high school graduating classes of 2017 and 2018, currently in 7th and 8th grades) with tutoring, college and career awareness visits and workshops, leadership training and scholarships for pre-college programs and college tuition.

TEAM UP College Access Centers

In collaboration with local, state, and national partners, MPS operates community-based TEAMUP College Access Centers within the Greater Milwaukee area.

Tutoring 4 You

MPS's Tutoring 4 You (T4U) program targets 42 Focus and Priority schools. Schools that show large gaps in reading, or mathematics scores, gaps in graduation rates between subgroups, and/or low performance by high need subgroups; have been identified as focus and priority schools.

Alternative Programs

MPS offers a number of alternative options for students who struggle in traditional classroom settings. We offer alternative settings for students in the following categories:

At-Risk of not graduating from high school: Students must meet two or more of the following criteria: One or more years behind age group in credits, two or more years behind age group in basic skills, habitual truants, parents, adjudicated delinquents, 8th-grade students whose scores are below basic or have failed the examination administered under 11.830(lm)(am) or fail to be promoted to the 9th grade. Students who meet these criteria may apply for an at-risk seat at the school or MPS Central Services.

Behavioral Reassignment: These programs provide students in grades 6-12 who have violated the MPS Code of Conduct a continuum of services in an alternative school setting. Students are assigned to these programs by the Office of Family Services.

Intensive Day Treatment: Open only to students assigned by a direct order from a judge at Children's Court.


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About Milwaukee Public Schools

Milwaukee Public Schools is committed to accelerating student achievement, building positive relationships between youth and adults and cultivating leadership at all levels. The district’s commitment to improvement continues to show results:

  • - More MPS students are meeting reading standards
  • - The MPS Class of 2014 earned $31 million in scholarships, up $7 million; and
  • - MPS is home to 4 of the state’s top 15 high schools according to U.S. News and World Report

Visit to learn more about MPS.

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