What We Do
Learning Journeys connect standards-based classroom instruction with real-world experiences at Southeastern Wisconsin’s finest museums, cultural experiences and scientific venues. Learning Journeys are provided at no charge to all students in grades K through 8 and include instructional materials for teachers to use in the classroom. The Learning Journeys program helps engage students, extends and improves classroom learning, and ensures that every MPS student graduates with a diverse set of experiences in the greater Milwaukee community.
The United Nations Schools of International Learning, or UNSIL, program is implemented in grades 4 through 8 at 13 of MPS' most diverse schools, where students speak more than 35 different languages. In the program, students learn about the United Nations and its member countries throughout the world. They think critically about real-world problems, research solutions, and work together to develop a global perspective. Each year culminates in a World Fair where students present their work to each other and to the community and enjoy cultural performances from fellow MPS students. Through this experience, students master critical academic skills such as research, writing, and presenting with a focus on world affairs and current events. Students gain skills in debate, negotiation, and conflict resolution, and they develop empathy and tolerance—all competencies that will serve them well in college and career.
The Greener, Healthier Schoolyards project is a multi-year, district-wide effort to reduce pavement and increase green space at our schools. Improvements include installation of bioswales to manage stormwater, new outdoor classrooms, tree plantings, expanded school gardens, and plans for curriculum that will incorporate ecology, sustainability, and freshwater sciences. The improvements will impact neighborhoods, provide community access, and improve the quality of life for students and school communities.
The MPS Foundation's MPS Arts Fund provides critical support for arts programming within MPS. In 2018, the fund supported MPS Year of the Arts initiatives including student art contests, the All-City Arts Festival, classroom grants and additional arts training/resources for teachers and principals, and the City of Milwaukee Youth Year of the Arts Passport which provided arts opportunities throughout the city to students and their families. In 2019, the MPS Foundation partnered with the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music to implement adaptive percussion classes for students with visual or hearing impairments, mobility issues, autism, or special needs.