ON-Lion Letter
An important report newly released by the Partners Advancing Values in Education (PAVE) organization in Milwaukee details that which it has done, with major support from The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation, to creatively expand the supply of innovative and entrepreneurial educational options for parents in the city.

Since 2001, according to the report, Extraordinary Opportunities, Extraordinary Results, PAVE’s $13 million investment in capital loans from its Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), grants, and expert technical assistance has helped almost 20 good schools participating in the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program to expand -- and has leveraged more then $47 million from financial partners.  In 2001, the Bradley Foundation made a five-year, $20 million commitment to PAVE for its CDFI. 
PAVE’s financial partners have included Associated Bank, Catholic Knights, Chase Bank, Investors Bank, Legacy Bank, Lincoln State Bank, M&I Bank, North Milwaukee State Bank, Park Bank, U.S. Bank, Waukesha State Bank, and the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod Church Extension Fund.

All of the loans have been repaid or are in good standing and, from the repayments, PAVE has created a revolving loan fund to help even more good schools and create even more good educational options.

“Milwaukee’s education marketplace offers extraordinary opportunities to strengthen and expand schools that meet the needs of low-income families,” the report concludes.  “While the cost of education is covered by charter and voucher legislation, there is little margin for capital expenses.  PAVE has learned what is needed to help successful schools expand.”
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