Boots & Sabers

The blogging will continue until morale improves...


Everything but tech support.

0702, 23 Sep 14

MPS Splits with Developers of Malcolm X Academy Building

Remember that this was a deal put together to avoid selling the school to a successful private school that wanted to expand to provide an excellent education to mostly minority children. MPS’ school board is continuing to throw hundreds of thousands of dollars into an empty building to prevent minority kids from getting an education.

Less than a year after shunning a cash offer from a private school operator for the empty Malcolm X Academy building, MPS is cutting ties with the developer it commissioned to renovate the site — but not before paying between $500,000 and $1 million for work done so far.

The split marks the end of a public-private partnership championed by former Milwaukee Public Schools Superintendent Gregory Thornton as “probably the best deal in town” for taxpayers just 11 months ago. The district now says it will proceed independently and hire a new construction manager for the building and sprawling 5-acre parcel at 2760 N. 1st St.

The latest twist was set in motion by a new agreement the Milwaukee School Board approved after meeting in closed session.

At the moment, the district and the developer — 2760 Holdings LLC, formed by Dennis Klein of KBS Construction and James Phelps of JCP Construction — disagree on how much it will cost to settle up on the work done so far. The developers want close to $1 million; MPS says it has determined the cost of the work done to be just under $500,000. The parties are meeting Tuesday to discuss the situation.


0702, 23 September 2014


  1. Steve Austin

    If I recall, I think MPS was going to pay the developers something like $4 million to lease the building back after they sold it for basically nothing. It seemed like a deal where the “developers” couldn’t lose a dime nor needed to do anything. Obviously the front group MPS hired to take over the building wasn’t competent enough to even fake it through this contract.

    I watched Fox 6 the other night on the election ballot controversy and the guy with the Milwaukee election committee was claiming it would be a taxpayer SCANDAL if he was forced to spend what he claimed would be $130,000 to reprint ballots for the Nov. 4th election based on the flawed design. Then he went on to claim he might not even be able to find a printer to do the job (he’s only got 7 weeks you know). First time I’ve ever seen any Milwaukee government official “concerned” about wasting money.

  2. insagtman

    Milwaukee Public Schools remain a fraud, and a huge waste of taxpayers funds. They keep claiming that choice schools cost them money, but never explain that their expenses should be reducing as the students bail out of their government schools.


    With a 60% graduation rate @ MPS, we would sure hate for them to sell their empty school buildings to successful private operators.

  3. Kevin Scheunemann

    So instead of selling this school to a successful, faith centered, school, (saving inner city kids on more than one level) MPS managed to SPEND $500,000+ to maintain their godless, faithless, failing school monopoly.

    Is the godless school monopoly more important than education success?

    Clearly, with MPS, it is never about the kids.

    Awful. Just awful.

Pin It on Pinterest