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Engaging with people passionate about public schools.

Each year, we host an array of events to illuminate the interconnectedness of our work, schools and the Madison community. Working to raise awareness and support for Madison Metropolitan School District, we’re committed to building a bright future for our students and Madison.

Upcoming Event

2023-24 Briefing – School Budgets Up in the Air

June 22, 2023, 5:00pm to 7:00pm
Madison Public Schools Foundation or online via Zoom

Jason Stein and Sara Shaw of Wisconsin Policy Forum will expand upon key findings from their recent report Up in the Air, School Budgets Hinge on Decisions in Madison. The 2024 budget cycle finds Wisconsin’s two largest school districts facing the challenges of declining student enrollment and the need to boost employee pay amid record inflation in a tight labor market.

Key findings for the MMSD budget proposal include:

  • Total 2023 staffing at MMSD would decrease by 155 positions, or 3.7% and would continue in 2025.
  • MMSD general school aids are projected to fall sharply in 2024, and may cause MMSD to consider another operating referendum in 2024.


Past Events

Together we create a stronger community.


Schools Make Madison Summit

April 27, 2023

The first annual Schools Make Madison Summit gathered together nearly 150 community advocates to Thermo Fisher Scientific’s campus. The goal for the morning was to educate, collaborate and inspire action around creating systems of support and opportunity for our MMSD students. Attendees heard from educators, and business and community leaders on the significance of K12 public schools to our community and regional economy, and from current Adopt-a-School partners about the difference they’re making through their involvement with our schools and students.


Schools Make Madison Partners for Progress Breakfast

November 17, 2022

Our Schools Make Madison Sponsors and community leaders gathered to hear business leaders’ take on the local business climate, workforce recruitment and retention, and how supporting Wisconsin K12 education aligns with their corporate values and strategy.

Panel conversation featured Justin Cruz, AVP Product Strategy & Development, American Family Insurance and Jim Yehle, President & CEO, J.H. Findorff & Son Inc., moderated by Gisele Sutherland, Associate General Counsel / VP, BMO Financial Group and Madison Public Schools Foundation Board member.

District high school students entertained guests as they gathered.


Schools Make Madison Champions Reception

October 6, 2022

We gathered to celebrate our Champion donors whose generous, unrestricted financial support is the backbone of the ongoing sustained progress of the Foundation and our mission to support Madison’s public schools.

Guests were treated to a live musical performance by Shelly, Emily, and Logan – 8th, 3rd, and 2nd-grade students at Cherokee Heights Middle and Thoreau Elementary schools.

Our 90+ Champions have committed to making annual donations to the Foundation at levels ranging from $500 to $10,000 and above.


Schools Make Madison Legacy Circle Celebration

September 27, 2022

Kathy Costello, retired principal and Foundation Board member, shared the surprising experience of answering the phone and learning her school, Thoreau Elementary, was the benefactor of a legacy gift. She shared the journey the team undertook to respectfully and intentionally develop a plan for how to use the $300,000+ bequest, resulting in the creation of the Forever Literacy Thoreau Elementary fund.

Lily and William read work they composed while students at Thoreau, both entered into the Yahara Writing contest.

Arranging a planned gift helps you to leave a legacy and support future generations of public school students in Madison. Planned gifts also provide an opportunity to fulfill your financial and estate planning goals. 

“Becoming a community school has had a very powerful and positive impact on Mendota. When you describe community schools it’s often the hub of community in which resources are provided for families and scholars. And it’s been that and more for us as a school.”

Carlettra Stanford, Associate Superintendent – Elementary Schools and former Principal of Mendota Elementary School

A newsletter that informs and inspires. 

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