Wauwatosa School District, Wisconsin

From Ballotpedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Wauwatosa School District, Wisconsin
Wauwatosa, Wisconsin
Wauwatosa School District seal.png
District Profile
Superintendent:Phil Ertl
Enrollment:7,204 students
Graduation rate:92.6 percent[1]
Number of schools:16
Budget: $84.2 million
Website:School Home Page
Board of Education
Board president:Mary Jo F. Randall
Board members:7 members
Term length:3 years
Wauwatosa School District is a school district in Wisconsin that served 7,204 students during the 2013-2014 school year.[2]

About the district

Wauwatosa School District is located in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin.

Wauwatosa School District is located in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin. The county seat is Milwaukee. Milwaukee County is home to 956,023 residents, according to the United States Census Bureau.[3]


Higher education achievement

Milwaukee County outperformed the rest of Wisconsin in terms of higher education achievement in 2012. The United States Census Bureau found that 27.7 percent of Milwaukee County residents aged 25 years and older had attained a bachelor's degree compared to 26.4 percent for Wisconsin as a whole.[3]

Median household income

From 2008 through 2012, the median household income for Milwaukee County was $43,599. During that same time period, the median household income for Wisconsin was $52,627.[3]

Poverty rate

The poverty rate in Milwaukee County was 20.9 percent from 2008 through 2012. During that same time period, the poverty rate for the entire state was 12.5 percent.[3]

Racial and political demographics

Racial Demographics, 2013[3]
Race Milwaukee County (%) Wisconsin (%)
White 65.6 88.1
Black or African American 27.1 6.5
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.9 1.1
Asian 3.8 2.5
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0.0 0.0
Two or more race 2.6 1.7
Hispanic or Latino 14.0 6.3

Presidential Voting Pattern, Milwaukee County[4]
Year Democratic Vote Green Party Vote Libertarian Vote Republican Vote
2012 332,438 1,042 2,623 154,924
2008 319,819 589 1,105 149,445
2004 297,653 319 963 180,287

Note: Each column will add up to 100 percent after removing the "Hispanic or Latino" percentage, although rounding by the Census Bureau may make the total one- or two-tenths off. Read more about race and ethnicity in the Census here.[5]


Phil Ertl is the superintendent of the Wauwatosa School District. He has served in this role since 2005. He previously served as superintendent of the Kiel Area School District. Before becoming a superintendent, Ertl worked as a high school associate principal and as a middle school principal in the Menasha Joint School District and also worked as a teacher and a coach in Marble Falls, Texas and Tomah, Wisconsin. He earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin at La Crosse, his master's degree from Winona State University in Minnesota and his doctoral degree from Columbia University in New York. Ertl and his wife have two sons who attend school in the Wauwatosa School District.[6]

School board

The Wauwatosa School Board consists of seven members elected to three-year terms. Members are elected at-large to specific seats.[7]

Wauwatosa School Board
Member Seat Assumed office Term Ends
Philip Kroner 1 2007 2016
Michael E. Meier 2 2004 2016
Anne Fee 3 2007 2016
Mary Jo F. Randall 4 2005 2017
Kristy B. Casey 5 2014 2017
Sharon Muehlfeld 6 2005 2017
Brian Bawden 7 2014 2017

School board elections

Members of the Wauwatosa School Board are elected at-large to three-year terms on a staggered basis. Three seats are elected one year, four seats are elected the next year, and the following year holds no elections. Four seats were up for election in 2014, no seats were up for election in 2015, and three seats will be up for election in 2016.[7][8]

Public participation in board meetings

The Wauwatosa School Board maintains the following policy on public testimony during board meetings:

Public Participation at Board Meetings

Members of the Wauwatosa School Board value the input of students, parents, staff members and community members. The Board’s regularly scheduled meetings provide an opportunity for opinions and concerns to be expressed publicly. The Board values all comments and will respectfully consider this input in decision-making. The Board requests that individuals limit their comment on each item to three (3) minutes. Following any comment, an individual Board member may respond on the issue raised; however, it is not the intent of the public comment portion of the agenda for the Board to enter into a debate with a member(s) of the community. Because non-agenda items are not publicly posted in advance, no action will be taken on public comment regarding non-agenda items that evening.

Participants must be recognized by the presiding officer and will be requested to preface their comments by an announcement of their name and address.

Each statement made by a participant shall be limited to three (3) minutes duration.

Participants shall direct all comments to the Board and not to staff or other participants.

All statements shall be directed to the presiding officer; no person may address or question Board members individually.

The presiding officer may:

A. Limit the number of times a speaker may comment on the same topic.

B. Interrupt, warn, or terminate a participant's statement when the statement is too lengthy, personally directed, abusive, obscene, or irrelevant;

C. request any individual to leave the meeting when that person does not observe reasonable decorum;

D. request the assistance of law enforcement officers in the removal of a disorderly person when that person's conduct interferes with the orderly progress of the meeting;

E. call for a recess or an adjournment to another time when the lack of public decorum so interferes with the orderly conduct of the meeting as to warrant such action;

F. waive these rules with the approval of the Board when necessary for the protection of privacy or the administration of the Board's business.

G. Recording, filming, or photographing Board meetings is permitted. The person operating the equipment should contact the Superintendent prior to the Board meeting to review possible placement of the equipment, and must agree to abide by the following conditions:

1. No obstructions are created between the Board and the audience.
2. No interviews are conducted in the meeting room while the Board is in session.
3. No commentary, adjustment of equipment, or positioning of operators is made that would distract either the Board or members of the audience or otherwise disrupt the meeting while the Board is in session.

19.90, Wis. Stats.[9]

—Wauwatosa School District website, (2014)[10]


Details on the district's revenue and expenditures in recent years can be found in the tables below. The following charts show the percentages of revenue and expenditures by type for the 2014-2015 school year.[11]




The district's total revenues decreased by 0.002 percent from the 2013-2014 school year to the 2014-2015 school year. During that same time period, local revenue and federal aid decreased while state aid increased.

Revenue by Category
School Year Local Other School Districts State Aid Federal Aid Other Revenue Total
Total % of Revenue Total % of Revenue Total % of Revenue Total % of Revenue Total % of Revenue
2013-2014 $52,600,581 64.3% $0 0% $25,889,148 31.6% $3,363,053 4.1% $0 0% $81,852,783
2014-2015 $51,616,870 63.2% $0 0% $27,108,063 33.2% $3,002,043 3.7% $0 0% $81,726,976
Averages: $52,108,725.5 64% $0 0% $26,498,605.5 32% $3,182,548 4% $0 0% $81,789,879.5


Between the 2013-2014 school year to the 2014-2015 school year, the district's expenditures increased by 0.04 percent. Expenditures on staff expenses, student services and operational expenses all increased.

Expenditures by Category
School Year Staff Expenses Student Services Operational Expenses Debt Service Other Budget Total
Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget
2013-2014 $63,099,991 78% $5,382,467 6.7% $12,219,434 15.1% $0 0% $211,024 0.3% $80,912,916
2014-2015 $63,541,287 75.4% $6,248,302 7.4% $14,220,858 16.9% $0 0% $231,156 0.3% $84,241,603
Averages: $63,320,639 77% $5,815,384.5 7% $13,220,146 16% $0 0% $221,090 0% $82,577,259.5

Teacher salaries

See also: Issues in the Wauwatosa School District

Teachers in the Wauwatosa School District can earn between $40,000 and $80,700 a year, depending on their performance. This salary schedule was started in the 2014-2015 school year.[12]


Teachers in the Wauwatosa School District are represented by the Wauwatosa Education Association.[13]

Schools in Wauwatosa School District, Wisconsin


Wauwatosa School District served 7,204 students during the 2013-2014 school year. Enrollment in the district increased by 0.1 percent from 2009 to 2013.[2]

Total enrollment
Year Enrollment Year-to-year change (%)
2009-2010 7,133 -
2010-2011 7,208 1.0
2011-2012 7,275 0.9
2012-2013 7,204 -1.0
2013-2014 7,204 0.0

District schools

Wauwatosa School District operates 16 schools, which are listed below in alphabetical order:[14]

Wauwatosa School District, Wisconsin
School Name
East High School
Eisenhower Elementary School
Jefferson Elementary School
Lincoln Elementary School
Longfellow Middle School
Madison Elementary School
McKinley Elementary School
Roosevelt Elementary School
Underwood Elementary School
Virtual Academy Statewide
Washington Elementary School
Wauwatosa Montessori School
Wauwatosa STEM
West High School
Whitman Middle School
Wilson Elementary School

Academic performance

See also: Public education in Wisconsin
Education policy logo.jpg

Education policy in the U.S.
Public education in the U.S.
School choice in the U.S.
Charter schools in the U.S.
Higher education in the U.S.
State public education information
Higher education by state
Glossary of education terms
Education statistics
See also

The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction administers annual Wisconsin Student Assessment System (WSAS) tests to students throughout the state. These tests assess proficiency in math and reading among students in grades three through eight as well as 10th grade. WSAS tests also evaluate proficiency in language arts, science and social studies at grades four, eight and 10. The Department of Public Instruction publishes results from WSAS tests as part of each district's Annual District Report Card.[15]

The Annual District Report Card compares district performance with state performance based on four criteria:[15]

  • Student Achievement: This category compares reading and math performance by district students to state and national standards.
  • Student Growth: This category compares year-to-year performance on reading and math sections in WSAS tests.
  • Closing Gaps: This category compares test performance by low-performing groups in the district to similar cohorts across the state.
  • On-Track and Postsecondary Readiness: This category uses benchmarks including ACT scores, graduation rate, attendance rate and math achievement to assess post-graduate preparedness.

Wauwatosa School District received an overall score of 79.0 during the 2013-2014 school year. The district's overall score led to an "Exceeds Expectations" designation from the Department of Public Instruction. The following tables compare district performance with state performance and detail the accountability ratings for schools in the district, according to the 2013-2014 Annual District Report Card:[15]

Annual District Report Card grades, 2013-2014
Category District score State score
Student achievement 82.6 66.4
Student growth 72.4 62.4
Closing gaps 70.1 66.3
On-track and postsecondary readiness 90.9 85.3

Accountability ratings for schools in the district, 2013-2014
Category Number of schools Percentage of schools
Significantly exceeds expectations 7 41.2%
Exceeds expectations 6 35.3%
Meets expectations 2 11.8%
Meets few expectations 0 0.0%
Fails to meet expectations 0 0.0%
Alternate Accountability - Satisfactory Progress 2 11.8%
Alternate Accountability - Needs Improvement 0 0.0%

Historical data

The state's Annual District Report Card includes a review of district and state proficiency information in mathematics and reading for the previous five years. This review includes data from the Wisconsin Knowledge and Concepts Examination (WKCE) and the Wisconsin Alternate Assessment for Students with Disabilities (WAA-SwD) for students from grades three through eight and 10. The following tables compare the district's percentage of proficient and advanced proficient students with state levels from the 2009-2010 school year through the 2013-2014 school year:[15]

Mathematics proficiency comparisons, 2009-2013
School year District proficiency rate (%) State proficiency rate (%)
2009-2010 66.2 47.0
2010-2011 63.6 46.8
2011-2012 64.8 48.3
2012-2013 66.9 48.2
2013-2014 67.1 48.8

Reading proficiency comparisons, 2009-2013
School year District proficiency rate (%) State proficiency rate (%)
2009-2010 50.0 35.7
2010-2011 48.5 35.7
2011-2012 49.9 36.0
2012-2013 52.3 36.4
2013-2014 52.6 36.7


School board forms Legislative Advocacy Committee to seek more education funding

Looking at a $900,000 loss in funding if Gov. Scott Walker's proposed budget is passed, the Wauwatosa School Board formed a Legislative Advocacy Committee to call for more education funding at the state level. The committee plans to work with state lawmakers help find ways to increase public education funding.[16]

Kristy B. Casey, school board vice president and advocacy coordinator for the Wisconsin Coalition for Public Charter Schools, is leading the committee. Casey said the committee is looking for a range of perspectives to join them, specifically from different political affiliations, as she would like the committee to be "super bi-partisan."[16]

The committee is asking lawmakers for an increase in per pupil funding of $100 along with the authority to increase the revenue cap. In response to the growing opposition to the proposed budget, State Sen. Leah Vukmir (R) said she does not think the proposed education funding levels will stand.[17]

Changing teacher pay plans after Act 10

Teachers in the Wauwatosa School District can earn between $40,000 and $80,700 a year, depending on their performance, thanks to a new teacher pay plan that was approved in February 2014 and rolled out for the 2014-2015 school year. Wauwatosa has joined a number of other school districts across the state in looking at new teacher pay plan models, a result largely due to Wisconsin's Act 10. The law cut back public employees’ collective bargaining rights and in the process changed the way school districts look at paying teachers.[12]

Act 10 prohibits unions from negotiating anything more than base wages up to the rate of inflation, leaving the rest of a teacher's salary up to the school district. This has created an atmosphere of competition for teachers with certifications in high-need areas, as districts can now offer signing bonuses, raises and to pay resignation fees for teachers who leave a district mid-year. Prior to Act 10, teachers had many incentives to stay in a district long term. This new competitive atmosphere came with a rise in teacher turnover in some districts. If teachers are unhappy with a district's pay plan, they know other districts might have better offers.[12]

Before it was implemented, Wauwatosa's new teacher pay plan was widely debated. Those in support of it said it was competitive, which would help retain good teachers and attract new ones. Opponents said the plan was too subjective and not competitive enough compared to larger school districts.[12]

Contact information

Wauwatosa School District seal.png

Wauwatosa School District
12121 W. North Ave.
Wauwatosa, WI 53226
Phone: (414) 773-1000

See also

External links

Suggest a link


  1. Wisconsin Information System for Education, "HS Completion (Single Year): Wauwatosa," accessed January 15, 2015
  2. 2.0 2.1 Wisconsin Information System for Education, "Enrollment (Single Year): Wauwatosa," accessed January 15, 2015
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 United States Census Bureau, "Milwaukee County, Wisconsin," accessed August 13, 2014
  4. Milwaukee County Election Commission, "Election Results," accessed August 13, 2014
  5. United States Census Bureau, "Frequently Asked Questions," accessed April 21, 2014
  6. Wauwatosa School District, "Phillip Ertl: About me," accessed January 15, 2015
  7. 7.0 7.1 Wauwatosa School District, "Board Members," accessed January 15, 2015
  8. Wauwatosa School District, "Election Overview," accessed January 15, 2015
  9. Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  10. Wauwatosa School District, "Bylaws 0160 Meetings," accessed January 15, 2015
  11. Wauwatosa School District, "2014-2015 Approved Budget," accessed January 15, 2015
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "In wake of Act 10, school districts changing teacher pay formulas," August 18, 2014
  13. Nonprofit Facts, "Wauwatosa Education Association, Wea in Brookfield, Wisconsin (WI)," accessed January 15, 2015
  14. Wauwatosa School District, "Schools," accessed January 15, 2015
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, "Report Cards," accessed January 15, 2015
  16. 16.0 16.1 Wauwatosa Now, "Wauwatosa School District forming advocacy group to fight state budget cuts," March 11, 2015
  17. Wauawatosa Now, "Wauwatosans lobby lawmakers for public education funding," March 26, 2015