JS: Catholic schools pressure MPS for bus money

Two Catholic schools are pressuring Milwaukee Public Schools to fund more of their transportation costs, raising new questions about the extent to which districts must provide busing to private-school students under state law.

Messmer Catholic Schools leaders are asking the MPS administration to change the way it treats the network under that law, which calls for districts to bus local private-school students under certain circumstances. Messmer leaders say the change would bring it approximately $40,000 in additional busing funds this year for elementary students.

St. Joan Antida High School is going a step further and threatening a lawsuit if MPS doesn't treat it like a public, citywide high school — and pay for busing for 70 of its girls. That costs $108,000 currently, according to St. Joan Antida leaders.

Both cases are being watched by other private schools, especially those looking for ways to maximize available public funding streams.
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