ON-Lion Letter

The Partners Advancing Values in Education (PAVE) organization in Milwaukee invests financial and human capital in high-potential Partner Schools in Milwaukee.  As the 2014-15 school year begins, PAVE announced that it has participated in over $100 million in successful school-expansion projects since 2001.

PAVE has directly contributed $5.2 million in the form of planning and challenge grants and provided $18.1 million in loans for the growth and expansion of 30 different schools or networks in the city.  Other financing partners with which PAVE has built relationships with over the years -- banks, insurance companies, IFF, and many others -- have been critical partners in these projects that now have a total value of over $100 million.

PAVE’s Capital Investment Program was launched by a major, multi-year grant commitment from The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation in Milwaukee.

After providing $24 million in scholarships between 1992 and 2001 that enabled children from low-income families to attend Milwaukee’s private schools, PAVE recognized the need to expand effective schools since they often had to turn students away for lack of space.  St. Marcus Lutheran School was PAVE’s first major successful project.  Pastor Mark Jeske was the visionary leader who worked for two years to develop support for a new school facility with PAVE‘s assistance.

“PAVE was so helpful providing technical assistance and a $150,000 challenge grant, and then enabling us to obtain a very favorable loan,” according to Jeske.  “In fact, our whole financing package would not have happened without PAVE.”

From capital investments and loans to building the capacity for volunteer leadership and accountability in Milwaukee schools, PAVE continues to evolve to provide high-potential schools with the resources necessary to achieve their visions.  “Over the years we have been successful working behind the scenes, while highlighting our Partner Schools who deserve recognition for educating Milwaukee’s children -- and the significance of almost $100 million invested in high quality educational opportunities is something we’re proud to celebrate,” PAVE president Dan McKinley said.

The recent expansion of Notre Dame Middle School is the project that brought PAVE’s Capital Investment Program to over $100 million in total value.  PAVE's support of Notre Dame's expansion also highlights its emerging focus on providing a diverse mix of governance and organizational capacity-building services to help create and sustain high-performing school organizations.

PAVE was instrumental in facilitating the strategic plan carried out by Notre Dame’s board, as well as providing $1 million in low-cost financing for the renovation of a school building that will accommodate the new students.  "Three years ago, PAVE helped guide us through a strategic planning process where the idea for Notre Dame Primary School was sparked," according to Notre Dame Middle School president Mary McIntosh.  "Within a year, we opened the co-educational primary school and today we have a full K-5 through 8th grade school, allowing us to increase the number of deserving students we educate from 119 in 2008 to 370 this school year.  Our entire school community is grateful to our friends at PAVE for their partnership and support over many years."

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