Terrence Falk

Terrence Falk

Terrence Falk worked for more than 31 years as a Milwaukee Public School teacher and served for 12 years on the Milwaukee school board and as Milwaukee's representative to the Wisconsin Association of School Boards. He has written for Milwaukee Magazine, Shepherd Express, Science Magazine, Urban Milwaukee and School News.

UW-Madison's Bascom Hall

The decline of standardized tests

By: - May 22, 2020

There were no state standardized tests in Wisconsin’s primary and secondary schools this spring. No state school report cards will be issued next year. Both the ACT and SAT suspended their May college entrance exams. The June SAT has been cancelled as well, and the ACT, while not cancelled yet, is in doubt. While Wisconsin […]

Beloit College (photo by Robin Zebrowski / CC BY (

Private colleges on life support

By: - May 5, 2020

Holy Family College in Manitowoc will shut its door for good at the end of August. It will not be the last Wisconsin college to close since the COVID-19 pandemic struck, only the first. Other Wisconsin colleges are in critical condition. Some will make it out of intensive care alive. Others will not. What is […]

children at school looking at a computer

Virtual education gets a boost during the pandemic

By: - April 20, 2020

The clock is ticking. “DEADLINE” screams the text in all caps at the top of  the website for eAchieve Academy. A  digital clock counts down the days, hours and minutes left to sign up for online school next fall using the state’s open enrollment program, which allows families to transfer out of their local school […]

children at school looking at a computer

Wisconsin schools scramble to go online

By: - March 20, 2020

On Monday morning, 28 students received lunch and breakfast to go along with a packet of learning material at Milwaukee’s Bay View High School. There were some rough spots along the way; materials for grade nine came in late, materials for grades 10-12 were missing. But parents and students need to come daily to receive […]

NUTLEY, NJ - FEBRUARY 28: A researcher works in a lab that is developing testing for the COVID-19 coronavirus at Hackensack Meridian Health Center for Discovery and Innovation. (Photo by Kena Betancur/Getty Images)

Wisconsin schools are ill-prepared for coronavirus

By: - March 6, 2020

My nine-year-old granddaughter became visibly upset watching TV, as images of people in surgical masks walking the streets in panic over the coronavirus crossed the screen. She wanted to know if she or her family was in danger. With television and social media, our children know about the global virus pandemic. What should we be […]

Mishicot School District Logo

At annual conference, school boards reject retiring Native American mascots

By: - January 28, 2020

When Tricia Zunker was elected to the Wausau school board, she wanted her district to become more involved with the Wisconsin Association of School Boards (WASB). As her district’s board president, she pored over the policy positions of the state organization and discovered that it did not oppose the use of Indian nicknames and mascots. […]

GUANICA, PUERTO RICO - JANUARY 7: A man walks past a destroyed store after a 6.4 earthquake hit just south of the island on January 7, 2020 in Guánica, Puerto Rico. The earthquake was preceded by a series of smaller quakes in the south of the island with the epicenter in Guánica. (Photo by Eric Rojas/Getty Images)

Earthquakes in Puerto Rico touch Wisconsin

By: - January 21, 2020

“Anxiety is the word everyone is using right now,” says Mabel Maldonado. She is a vice-president for the Milwaukee chapter of the National Conference of Puerto Rican Women. A 5.4 magnitude earthquake hit the southern end of Puerto Rico on Friday, Jan. 9, and more quakes just keep coming. Day after day, hour and hour, […]

children at school looking at a computer

Selective high schools’ elite illusion

By: - January 17, 2020

We discovered this past year that the rich and famous poured millions of dollars into the coffers of elite universities in order to get their kids into prestigious institutions that they didn’t deserve. What exactly were they buying?  It hasn’t taken long for the same questions to arise on the value of selective public high […]

Group of young children in a classroom

The schools our children deserve: beyond Milwaukee’s referendum battle

By: - January 14, 2020

“Property taxes would spike under MPS referendum scenarios,” screamed the headline from the Nov. 19  Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.  “…more than doubling local property tax bills,” the newspaper article went on to say.  “Pie in the sky,” was one of the subheadings of the article quoting Steve Francavigia of Aurora Health Care referring to the largest […]

School officials talk about safety in wake of shootings

By: - December 5, 2019

On Monday morning at Waukesha South High School, a police officer shot a 17-year-old student who pulled out a gun and pointed it at an officer. It was just the beginning of a week of gun scares and lockdowns at eight different Wisconsin high schools. On Tuesday, a student was shot after stabbing a school […]

School bus. (Photo licensed by Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0)

As Milwaukee enters the school referendum race, it should look to St. Paul

By: - November 17, 2019

The Milwaukee public school district is at the starting blocks, ready to run the referendum race in April 2020. Crossing the finish line with a successful school referendum is not a given, but in the past few years, Wisconsin’s school districts have scored an impressive string of victories persuading their local taxpayers to fund both […]

Group of young children in a classroom

Milwaukee schools look for results from ‘Ambitious Instruction’

By: - October 29, 2019

For two hours on Wednesday evening, Oct. 16, Milwaukee Public Schools Superintendent Keith Posley and his staff outlined before the school board their vision of “Ambitious Instruction.” Board members complimented the administration on a well-developed instructional plan to raise academic achievement. But there was also an undercurrent of skepticism from board members that the administration […]