Emily Files

Education Reporter

Emily became WUWM’s education reporter in August 2018 after spending four years in small-town Alaska.

She began as a reporter for KRBD in Ketchikan, where she once covered a bear interrupting a high school cross country race. She then worked as a reporter and eventually news director at KHNS Radio in Haines, where she reported on a man in a bear costume harassing actual bears. Aside from the occasional bear story, Emily covered the local politics, tribal issues, hunting, fishing and, of course, education.

Emily is originally from the Chicago area. She studied journalism at Emerson College in Boston, where she reported her very first radio stories for college station WERS. She interned at NPR’s Weekend Edition, The Boston Globe and PRI’s The World. Emily’s work has aired on Marketplace, NPR’s Only a Game, and The World.

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Emily Files

State education chief and gubernatorial hopeful Tony Evers wants to put an additional $1.4 billion into public education over the next two years. The proposal is part of the Department of Public Instruction’s request for the 2019-2021 state budget.

Evers, a Democrat, heads the agency as state superintendent. The spending plan comes in the middle of a tight race between Evers and incumbent Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican.

Emily Files

U.S. Assistant Secretary of Education Frank Brogan — who recently made the news with his comments on arming teachers — visited a Milwaukee public school Tuesday. The federal education official was touring the Midwest to highlight innovation in schools.

He recognized Ronald Reagan College Preparatory High School, an MPS magnet school on the south side, for its anti-bullying efforts. Its anti-bullying initiatives include a program that partners incoming freshmen with older students.

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The ACLU of Wisconsin is putting pressure on the Kenosha Unified School District to protect its students from what some are calling "discriminatory" dress code enforcement. Last year, Kenosha-area teens and parents spoke out against the district’s dress code policy, saying it was discriminatory toward female students.

Alexa Grosz was one of the students who testified at an October school board meeting. She said she was punished for wearing an off-the-shoulder sweater.

Theo Stroomer/Stringer/Getty Images

Wisconsin’s candidates for governor touted their education priorities at back-to-school events this week. They're also continuing to criticize each other.

Gov. Scott Walker’s campaign released its first attack ad against Democrat challenger Tony Evers. It claims that as state superintendent, Evers failed to protect children from a teacher who viewed pornography at work.

The story is one of the main lines of attack Republicans backing Walker are using against Evers.

Emily Files

There is a new leader making decisions that affect about 80,000 Milwaukee schoolchildren.

Keith Posley took over as Milwaukee Public Schools’ interim superintendent a few months ago. He wants to turn around low-achieving schools, slash chronic absenteeism and boost enrollment. And he’s not the only one with great expectations. Other Milwaukee education leaders have high hopes for Posley himself.

“This work is all about children for me,” he said in an interview with WUWM.

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In the aftermath of mass shootings across the country, Wisconsin schools are getting $100 million in state grants to keep students safe. The funding comes from the State Department of Justice’s new Office of School Safety.

DOJ recently announced that about half of the funding will go toward mental health-related efforts.

Rachel Morello

Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS) face fierce competition for students from private voucher schools, suburban schools and of course, charter schools. The question of whether MPS should expand its own portfolio of charter schools can be controversial. 

On the other side, charter schools that contract with MPS sometimes disagree with the way the district allocates money.  

More information is coming out about the man who was shot and killed by Milwaukee police officers Monday.

WISN-TV has identified the man as Mario Hobson, a 48-year-old African-American man. WISN spoke with Hobson's daughter, who said her father was mentally ill.

Emily Files

Milwaukee Public Schools middle and high schoolers, along with some younger students, began their school year Monday. With the new school year comes a new interim superintendent, and Keith Posley has ambitious plans for the district.

Monday morning, students were welcomed with fanfare to Audubon Technology and Communication Center on the southwest side. Students filed down a red carpet while the drumline played. Some exchanged high-fives with Posley, teachers, and school board members, while others stared intently at their phones.