Latest Look at MPS Checkbook Shows More Questionable Expenditures

Click in bottom right hand corner to scroll through the August Check Register Graphic

MacIver News Service | September 2, 2010

[Milwaukee, Wisc…] Although they were able to recall some laid off teachers courtesy of the latest federal bailout, Milwaukee Public Schools’ spending practices continue to come under scrutiny.

Some of the more interesting expenditures are highlighted, above. They include:

  • $450 for the rental of a ‘bounce house’
  • $4,000 for youth and adult martial arts, Yoga and Pilates instruction
  • $2,000 for Karate instruction
  • $125 for gardening training
  • $3,500 for a 3-day ‘experimental education canoe trip’
  • $950 for a belly dance instruction at the Riverside Theatre
  • $9,500 to UWM for the evaluation of MPS’ after school wellness programs

The MacIver News Graphic, above, includes only some of the expenditures to vendors from August, 2010.

While this report is a regular feature at MacIver News Service, anyone can examine MPS’ expenditures at any time. MPS spending is a web tool developed by Milwaukee Public Schools to allow the public to review and analyze school district spending. The site allows users to examine spending by several criteria, including department, funding type (Board or categorical funds) and vendor. The tool tracks expenditures that are processed through accounts payable. It does not track contract amounts or budgets.

The district’s current budget closed a $33 million budget deficit from last year, and the district initially laid off hundreds employees to bridge the gap.