First grade programs.
Family resource center.
Alternative educational programs for learnfare pupils.
Ch. 119 Cross-reference
See definitions in s. 115.001
This chapter applies only to cities of the 1st class.
In this chapter, unless the context clearly requires otherwise:
"Board" means the board of school directors in charge of the public schools of a city of the 1st class.
"City" means a city of the 1st class.
"Members-elect" of a body at a particular time are those members who have been duly elected or appointed for a current regular or unexpired term and whose service has not terminated by death, resignation or removal from office.
Public instruction laws applicable. 119.04(1)
and VII of ch. 115
, ch. 121
and ss. 66.0235 (3) (c)
, 66.0603 (1m)
, 115.01 (1)
, 115.365 (3)
, 115.38 (2)
, 118.145 (4)
, 118.24 (1)
, (2) (c)
, and (10)
, 120.12 (2m)
, and (15)
, 120.13 (1)
, (2) (b)
, and (38)
, 120.21 (3)
, and 120.25
are applicable to a 1st class city school district and board.
The board shall exercise the powers, perform the functions and be entitled to all school aid under sub. (1)
insofar as the same are relevant to cities of the 1st class. The board and the schools in cities of the 1st class shall be governed in all matters by the general laws of the state, except as altered or modified by express amendments.
History: 1971 c. 152
; 1971 c. 154
; 1973 c. 89
s. 20 (1)
; 1973 c. 90
; 1973 c. 188
; 1973 c. 243
; 1975 c. 39
; 1977 c. 29
; 1977 c. 203
; 1977 c. 206
; 1979 c. 20
; 1979 c. 34
s. 2102 (43) (a)
; 1979 c. 221
; 1979 c. 346
; 1979 c. 355
; 1981 c. 59
; 1981 c. 241
; 1983 a. 193
; 1983 a. 339
; 1983 a. 374
; 1983 a. 412
; 1985 a. 29
s. 3202 (43)
; 1985 a. 56
; 1985 a. 214
; 1985 a. 225
; 1987 a. 27
; 1989 a. 31
; 1991 a. 39
; 1993 a. 16
; 1995 a. 27
; 1997 a. 27
; 1999 a. 9
; 1999 a. 150
; 1999 a. 186
; 2005 a. 99
; 2007 a. 20
; 2009 a. 28
; 2011 a. 10
; 2013 a. 20
Initial establishment of board. 119.06(1)
Members of a school board in existence in a city immediately prior to the date on which such city becomes a city of the 1st class shall continue to hold office and shall exercise all of the rights and privileges and discharge the duties of members of the board until their successors appointed under sub. (2)
are appointed and qualified.
Within 120 days after the date on which a city becomes a 1st class city, the mayor, the city treasurer, the city comptroller, the city attorney and the president of the common council of that city, acting as a commission for the city, shall meet and appoint a board of one at-large member and 8 members from election districts numbered and designated by the common council. The election districts shall be substantially equal in population and the boundaries of the election districts shall be drawn so as to reflect a balanced representation of citizens of all areas within the city. The person appointed to represent an election district shall reside within the boundaries of the election district as determined by the common council under this subsection.
The terms of members first appointed to the board by the commission shall be as follows:
The at-large member and 4 of the combined aldermanic district members shall serve for a term beginning on the 4th Monday of the month next following their appointment and expiring on the 4th Monday in April in the 2nd year following the year in which a city becomes a city of the 1st class.
Four of the combined aldermanic district members shall serve for a term beginning on the 4th Monday of the month next following their appointment and expiring on the 4th Monday in April in the 4th year following the year in which a city becomes a city of the 1st class.
Within 90 days after the board members appointed by the commission under sub. (2)
have taken office, the common council of the city may, by resolution adopted by a majority of its members-elect, call a special election to elect successors to the board members so appointed. Such resolution shall be introduced at a regular meeting of the common council. No action may be taken on the resolution until the next regular meeting of the common council and until the resolution has been published as a class 1 notice, under ch. 985
, together with a notice of the time when the resolution will be considered by the common council.
The board members elected at the special election shall be nominated and elected to succeed the board members appointed for the terms expiring under sub. (3) (a)
and for the same terms. The terms of office of the board members elected at the special election shall begin on the 4th Monday following the election.
Candidates for the board at the special election shall be nominated in the same manner as for the spring election.
The special election shall be held at the polling places and shall be conducted in the manner of and by the election officials for the spring election.
The board first appointed under sub. (2)
or first elected at a special election under sub. (4)
shall hold an organizational meeting under s. 119.10 (2)
on the 4th Monday of the month, or the next day if the 4th Monday is a legal holiday, following their appointment or election, and annually thereafter shall meet in accordance with s. 119.10 (2)
Successors to board members appointed under sub. (3)
or elected under sub. (4)
shall be elected at the spring election immediately preceding the expiration of the terms of such board members and shall serve for 4-year terms.
This chapter does not affect the term of office or employment of any person serving in any capacity by virtue of an appointment or contract of employment made by the school board in a city prior to the date on which a city becomes a city of the 1st class, but such person shall continue to serve in the same capacity under the board for the term for which the person was so appointed or employed, unless removed from such office or employment for the causes and in the manner provided in this chapter.
Election of board members. 119.08(1)(a)(a)
The board shall consist of one member elected at-large and 8 members elected from numbered election districts determined by the board. The election districts shall be substantially equal in population and the boundaries of the election districts shall be drawn so as to reflect a balanced representation of citizens in all areas within the city.
Within 60 days after the common council of the city enacts an ordinance or adopts a resolution adjusting the boundaries of wards in the city following the federal decennial census under s. 5.15 (1)
, the board shall, by vote of a majority of the membership of the board, adopt an election district apportionment plan for the election of board members which shall be effective until the city enacts a new ordinance under s. 62.08 (1)
adjusting the boundaries of its wards under s. 5.15 (1)
A person elected to represent a district shall reside within the boundaries of the district, except that if a person ceases to reside within the district because the boundaries of the district are changed during the person's term of office, the person may continue to serve for the balance of the term for which he or she was elected for so long as the person resides in the school district. Before taking office, the members of the board shall take the official oath of office and file it, duly certified by the officer administering the oath, with the city clerk.
The electors of each election district shall elect one member residing within the election district to represent the election district. The at-large member shall be elected by the electors of the city. Board members shall be electors of the city and shall be elected at the spring election. Candidates shall file nomination papers for full terms or, when vacancies are to be filled, for unexpired terms. The primary and spring elections for board members shall be conducted by the election officials for the election of judicial or other officers held on that date. The polling places for the state, municipal or judicial election shall be the polling places for the board election and the municipal election hours shall apply.
The regular terms of board members shall be 4 years.
A vacancy on the board shall be filled by a special election ordered by the board. At such election the vacancy shall be filled for the unexpired term. The board shall follow procedures under s. 8.50
, so far as applicable.
Meetings of the board. 119.10(1)
The board is a continuing body. Any unfinished business before the board or any of its standing or special committees on the date of the annual meeting under sub. (2)
shall be considered as pending before the board newly organized on such date. At its annual meeting, after the election of the new board president and the designation of the clerk, the clerk shall report to the board items of business pending before the board as a whole. After the annual April meeting, unless otherwise directed by the board, the clerk shall report items of business which had been pending before committees of the board to the corresponding committees of the board appointed by the new president. Matters thus reported may be acted upon by the board in the same manner and with the same effect as if the board had not been newly organized.
Annually, no earlier than the 4th Monday in April and no later than the first Monday in May, the board shall hold its organizational meeting, shall elect a president from among its members to serve for one year and until a successor is chosen and shall designate an individual to serve as clerk. In the absence or during the disability of the board president, the board shall elect an acting president. The board president shall appoint standing committees to serve for one year.
The board shall hold a regular meeting at least once each month at times fixed and published by the board in its rules. If a regular board meeting falls on a legal holiday, it shall be held on the next business day. Special meetings may be called and held as provided by the rules of the board. No business may be transacted at a special meeting other than that specified in the notice of the meeting, which shall be delivered personally or by mail to each member at least 24 hours before the time of such meeting.
A majority of the members-elect of the board constitute a quorum for the transaction of business but a smaller number may adjourn. A majority of the members-elect of the board shall be necessary to elect any person authorized to be elected by the board.
If a board member is absent for 4 successive board meetings without presenting satisfactory reason therefor in writing to the board, the board shall declare the member's seat vacant and shall fill the vacancy under s. 119.08 (4)
. If any person appointed or elected by the board is absent or is unable to perform the duties of the person's office, the board may appoint or elect a suitable person to act in the person's place during the person's absence or inability.
All elections or appointments by the board shall be by roll call vote which shall be entered by the clerk in the minutes and printed proceedings of the board.
Board; general provisions. 119.12(1)
Board members are subject to all restrictions, liabilities, punishments and limitations, including recall under s. 9.10 (4)
, prescribed by law for members of the common council in their city. A majority of the members-elect of the board may dismiss from office for malfeasance any member of the board. The board shall provide by resolution the manner of hearing and disposing of complaints against a board member.
In any action or proceeding in which the board is a defendant, service of any summons, writ, pleading or other papers served in commencing the action or proceeding upon the board president and the superintendent of schools constitutes service upon the entire board. It is sufficient to serve on such 2 officers any notice required by law to be served upon the board.
Each member of the board shall be paid an annual salary in the amount set by the board. The salary shall be paid monthly.
The board shall not in any one year contract any debt or incur any expense greater than the amount of the school funds subject to its order.
If the board president is by law a member of any board or commission, the board may appoint another board member to serve on such board or commission in place of the board president.
The city attorney of the city shall be the legal adviser of and attorney for the board, except that the board may retain an attorney to represent the board in any matter if the board determines that it requires specialized legal expertise not possessed by the city attorney, the city attorney does not have sufficient staff to adequately represent the interests of the board or a conflict of interest exists. The board shall provide the city attorney with reasonable notice of any board meeting at which the board will consider retention of an attorney.
Educational priorities and objectives.
The board and the superintendent of schools shall identify broad yearly objectives and assess priorities for education in the district and shall issue an annual report and such additional reports as the board and superintendent deem desirable on the progress of pupils enrolled in the public schools.
(1m) Management of school district.
The board shall have the possession, care, control and management of the schools, facilities, operations, property and affairs of the school district.
(2) Establish schools and districts.
The board shall maintain the public schools in the city and shall establish, organize and maintain such schools as the board determines are necessary to accommodate the children entitled to instruction therein. The board shall divide the city into attendance districts for such schools.
The board shall construct, purchase, lease, improve or enlarge buildings and purchase furniture and sites for the public schools, shall purchase, install and maintain heating systems in public schools and may contract for carrying out any of these purposes.
Except as provided in par. (c)
, schoolhouses and the sites on which they are situated shall be the property of the city. No site may be purchased or leased and no schoolhouse may be constructed unless a resolution therefor is duly adopted by the board. Except as provided in par. (c)
, deeds of conveyance and leases shall be made to the city.
If the redevelopment authority of the city issues bonds under s. 66.1333 (5r)
, the board may lease buildings or sites from the redevelopment authority or borrow money from the redevelopment authority for the purposes of par. (a)
By July 1, 2011, the board shall evaluate all school buildings in the school district operating under this chapter according to the criteria established under par. (b)
, and shall develop a master plan governing the use, repair, renovation, and demolition of buildings in the school district.
The board shall establish criteria to evaluate the safety, structural integrity, utility, and costs of maintenance and repair of school buildings in the school district. Subject to the requirements under sub. (10)
, the criteria shall include consideration of the advantages and disadvantages of repairing versus demolishing older buildings having high maintenance or operating costs.
(4) Competitive bidding.
The board shall establish competitive bidding policies and procedures for purchases and for construction contracts.
(5) Special courses.
Within budgetary limitations, the board shall establish in any public school, in grade 7 and higher, such classes of instruction consistent with the educational goals and objectives adopted by the board under sub. (1)
as are petitioned for by the parents of a number of pupils attending the school sufficient to form one or more classes of instruction. Petition by the parents of 30 or more pupils of like classification attending any such school requesting the establishment of instruction in a specified subject is prima facie evidence of the sufficiency of the number of pupils to commence instruction therein.
(6) Custodians of school premises.
The board shall fix the duties and responsibilities of principals, as custodians of the school premises, and of the school engineers. Each principal shall have general supervision of and shall be custodian of all school premises over which the principal presides.
Annually before adopting its budget for the ensuing school year and at least 5 days before transmitting its completed budget under par. (b)
, the board shall hold a public hearing on the proposed school budget at a time and place fixed by the board. At least one week before the public hearing, the board shall publish a class 1 notice, under ch. 985
, of the public hearing.
The board shall transmit its completed budget to the common council on or before the first Monday in August of each year on forms furnished by the auditing officer of the city. Such completed budget shall be published with the budget summary under s. 65.04 (2)
and budget under s. 65.05 (7)
(9) School budget.
Annually, the board shall prepare a budget for each school in the school district operating under this chapter.
The board may not demolish any school facility that is 50 years old or older without the approval of the city historic preservation commission.
The board may construct new school facilities only in the areas of greatest local need for such facilities.
(11) Comprehensive programs.
The board shall collaborate with nonprofit organizations and government agencies to provide pupils with comprehensive social services and educational support, which may include a program that offers comprehensive services that address the needs of children and youth from before the time they are born through postsecondary education.
(12) Alternative routes to graduation.
The board shall provide alternative methods of attaining a high school diploma for those pupils who are unlikely to graduate in the traditional manner, including a program allowing a pupil or former pupil to retake a course in which he or she was not initially successful.
(13) Research consortium.
If the board determines that sufficient state or federal aid or private funding is available for this purpose, the board shall participate in an educational research consortium, similar to the Consortium on Chicago School Research and the Boston Plan for Excellence, to provide research and policy recommendations, including recommendations addressing pupil literacy and academic achievement, to the department, the board, and the legislature. In addition, the research consortium shall make its recommendations publicly available.
(14) Parent survey.
Annually, the board shall conduct a survey of parents of pupils enrolled in the school district operating under this chapter and use the results of the survey to develop or modify parent involvement and school improvement plans, which may include school-based community resource centers, regularly scheduled public meetings, or parent education classes.
One who deals with a municipality does so at his or her own risk and may be subject to any provisions of law that might prevent him or her from being paid by a municipality even though the services were rendered. Unless the power to bind the municipality financially has been specifically delegated, the only entity with the statutory authority to contract is the municipality. The statutes do not authorize anyone other than the board to enter into contracts. The board may delegate that authority, but it must do so clearly and specifically. For an MPS employee to have such power, it must be specifically delegated by the board to that employee or class of employees. Holzbauer v. Safway Steel Products, Inc. 2005 WI App 240
, 288 Wis. 2d 250
, 706 N.W.2d 36
The authority of school boards to contract for services and facilities for special needs students is discussed. 61 Atty. Gen. 203.
The board may do all things reasonable to promote the cause of education, including establishing, providing and improving school district programs, functions and activities for the benefit of pupils.
The board may adopt and modify or repeal rules for its own government and for the organization, discipline and management of the public schools which shall promote the good order and public usefulness of the public schools.
(2) Distribution of printed proceedings.
The board may determine the distribution of the printed proceedings of the board.
The board may provide for the transportation of pupils to and from any school within the city.
The board may provide for accident insurance covering pupils in the school district.
(5) Textbooks for indigent pupils.
The board may purchase textbooks for pupils whose parents, guardians or other persons having control or custody of such pupils are without means to furnish them with textbooks, if the indigency of such pupils have been investigated and certified by a welfare worker or attendance officer. The local governmental authority administering poor relief in the city shall reimburse the board for all expenditures by the board for such textbooks. Such textbooks shall be the property of the city and subject to the disposal of the board.