GreatSchools Rating

Milwaukee High School of the Arts

Public | 9-12 | 992 students

We are best known for comprehensive arts education.

 
 
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
No new ratings
2013:
No new ratings
2012:
No new ratings
2011:
Based on 1 rating

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10 reviews of this school


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Posted May 29, 2011

I was a student at this school (class of 1992) and I do not feel that the education which I received was comprehensive enough to prepare for me for continued education opportunities. Though the art programs were very good, in hindsight I am disappointed that the academics seemed to be a secondary priority. I later withdrew from the school and took up my junior year at Riverside High School where I was placed in AP classes, (Advanced placement) where I caught up with my college-bound peers and excelled for the remainder of my high school career. I did go on as an adult to travel and took acting work as an extra in several movies including Interview with the Vampire, The Pelican Brief, Heaven's Prisoners, Candyman II. While I enjoyed this time in life, these odd jobs did not pay the bills and I continued my education in my 30's. Overall, I would have to say that if one is truly interested in the arts, visual or performing, and they intend to make a career out of their talent, then Milwaukee High School of the Arts is the place for you. If the academics are what you are going for, I would not suggest this school.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted November 12, 2009

I go to that shcool and that school has great students and great performences also i belive that you and your child(ren) will enjoy the opportunity there!!! trust me!!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 16, 2009

a place for the children interested in any of the arts to get a good education and instruction in their interested field


Posted August 18, 2008

MHSA is the best school you could possibly send your child to if they have skills in any of the art areas. I'm a current student, a junior, and my experience there has been fantastic! The students don't judge as much, because we are all so unique, and people just don't really care. The teachers are also great. They are really fun and we can joke around with them, but they also know when to be serious. There's so much more to tell, but the experience is better lived than told, so come to MHSA and you will be so happy!
—Submitted by a student


Posted March 5, 2008

MHSA allows me to excel in academics while pursuing our artistic passions. The students are kind and welcoming. The teachers are resourceful, helpful and compassionate.
—Submitted by a student


Posted January 15, 2007

MHSA works because: It is a medium-sized arts school, in operation for 22 years, serving 950 kids from inside and outside the city of Milwaukee. It utilizes an effective conservatory model of arts-based education and students receive 2 hours of instruction every day in one of five majors: Visual Arts, Music-instrunental and vocal- creative writing, Dance and Theater, in addition to their pre-collegiate academic classes. The talented staff are experienced, and dedicated to the MHSA mission. There are advanced placement and honors classes. 60% of the staff have advanced degrees. The student body is peaceful, accepting of individual differences and supportive of each other's goals. MHSA has collaborative relationships with professional artists from within the community that enrich the art experience. It has a successful athletics program. MHSA has a proud history of nurturing the whole child: heart and intellect. That is the MHSA advantage. (One daughter graduated in 94. 2 daughters are attending now.)
—Submitted by a parent


Posted November 14, 2006

MHSA gives Academically Advanced student with strong intrests in the arts an oppurtunity to spend several hours a day studing the arts.The kids here are so mature and the academics in my opinion are even better than Rufus king. The art classes are awesome. MHSA has an outstanding envirment, This school has a Diverse-cultural Arts City look and the auditoriam looks just like a Professinal downtown Theatre.
—Submitted by a student


Posted November 9, 2006

I am a current student at MHSA and this school is Accelerated education all the way. A 3.0 at MHSA is like a 1.5 at other MPS schools. This is the most Diverse school in the State of wisconsin and The Arts classes are Outstanding! There taught at a professinal level and the Music and Theatre Departments there are absolutly Fantastic! All the kids here are diffrent and very unique,which makes this school feel very welcoming. This is the one place you can come to where creativity and sef-expression can be realesed. The Academics are excellant, tons of honors and Ap classes are offered and MHSA ranks among the top 3 schools in wisconsin every year along with Rufus king, and Homestead high in Mequan. Thres no better way to academics than through Dance, Acting, Writing, Visual arts, or music(vocal and instrumental).
—Submitted by a student


Posted September 3, 2006

MHSA was a wonderful learning experience for my daughter. She was able to take AP classes, have outside performing opportunities, and work with first rate, highly qualified, outside, professional dance educators in the dance dept. The education she received there has allowed her to get jobs and place into higher classes in college, than if she'd not attended an arts high school. In short, MHSA is wonderful!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 14, 2003

MHSA has so many high level academic classes: honors and AP in English Science math and social studies. The opportunities for a great college-prep eduacation are here in a diverse arts-focused environment. My kids have flourished here!
—Submitted by a parent


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

The test results by subgroup show how the designated group of students is performing in comparison to the general population.

Grade level

Language Arts

The state average for Language Arts was 76% in 2013.

192 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
59%

2012

 
 
52%

2011

 
 
61%

2010

 
 
52%
Math

The state average for Math was 47% in 2013.

192 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
13%

2012

 
 
37%

2011

 
 
46%

2010

 
 
37%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 40% in 2013.

193 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
19%

2012

 
 
66%

2011

 
 
72%

2010

 
 
63%
Science

The state average for Science was 78% in 2013.

193 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
48%

2012

 
 
51%

2011

 
 
57%

2010

 
 
49%
Social Studies

The state average for Social Studies was 82% in 2013.

192 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
70%

2012

 
 
60%

2011

 
 
76%

2010

 
 
60%
Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Wisconsin used the Wisconsin Student Assessment System (WSAS), which includes the WKCE and WAA, to test students in grades 3 through 8 and 10 in math and reading, and in grades 4, 8 and 10 in language arts, science and social studies. The WSAS is a standards-based test, which means it measures how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Wisconsin. The goal is for all students to score at or above the proficient level. In private schools, only voucher program participants are tested.

Source: Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction

Language Arts

All Students59%
Female62%
Male55%
Black, not of Hispanic origin51%
Asian/Pacific Islandern/a
Hispanic68%
American Indian/Alaskan Nativen/a
White, not of Hispanic origin88%
Economically disadvantaged51%
Not economically disadvantaged77%
Students with disabilities26%
Non-disabled66%
English learnersn/a
Proficient in Englishn/a
Non-migrant59%

Math

All Students13%
Female15%
Male11%
Black, not of Hispanic origin7%
Asian/Pacific Islandern/a
Hispanic12%
American Indian/Alaskan Nativen/a
White, not of Hispanic origin47%
Economically disadvantaged8%
Not economically disadvantaged26%
Students with disabilities3%
Non-disabled16%
English learnersn/a
Proficient in Englishn/a
Non-migrant13%

Reading

All Students19%
Female24%
Male8%
Black, not of Hispanic origin10%
Asian/Pacific Islandern/a
Hispanic18%
American Indian/Alaskan Nativen/a
White, not of Hispanic origin63%
Economically disadvantaged11%
Not economically disadvantaged37%
Students with disabilities0%
Non-disabled23%
English learnersn/a
Proficient in Englishn/a
Non-migrant19%

Science

All Students48%
Female51%
Male45%
Black, not of Hispanic origin37%
Asian/Pacific Islandern/a
Hispanic62%
American Indian/Alaskan Nativen/a
White, not of Hispanic origin81%
Economically disadvantaged45%
Not economically disadvantaged59%
Students with disabilities14%
Non-disabled56%
English learnersn/a
Proficient in Englishn/a
Non-migrant48%

Social Studies

All Students70%
Female75%
Male60%
Black, not of Hispanic origin65%
Asian/Pacific Islandern/a
Hispanic73%
American Indian/Alaskan Nativen/a
White, not of Hispanic origin88%
Economically disadvantaged67%
Not economically disadvantaged78%
Students with disabilities26%
Non-disabled79%
English learnersn/a
Proficient in Englishn/a
Non-migrant70%
Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Wisconsin used the Wisconsin Student Assessment System (WSAS), which includes the WKCE and WAA, to test students in grades 3 through 8 and 10 in math and reading, and in grades 4, 8 and 10 in language arts, science and social studies. The WSAS is a standards-based test, which means it measures how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Wisconsin. The goal is for all students to score at or above the proficient level. In private schools, only voucher program participants are tested.

The different student groups are identified by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction. If there are fewer than 5 students in a particular group in a school, the state doesn't report data for that group. Subgroup scores for each school are only reported for students who were enrolled as of the fall enrollment count. The All students score includes results for all students who took the test, regardless of when they first enrolled in the school.

Source: Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction

GreatSchools Rating

What makes up this rating?

Academic rating
2 / 10
Climate rating
5 / 10

This school's GreatSchools Rating is based on academics (90%) and climate (10%). The academic rating measures students' test scores, academic growth and college readiness. The climate rating measures safety, cleanliness, parent involvement and more.

Learn more about our methodology

What is the new GreatSchools Rating?

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Our rating (from 1 to 10) reflects a school's overall performance. The higher the rating, the more likely the school will prepare your child for the future, so choose an above-average school (8-10) if possible. For average schools (4-7), do careful research and look for evidence that the school has high-quality programs. For below-average schools (1-3), take caution; a low-performing school may not provide the instruction or environment your child needs to learn, and you may need to supplement classroom lessons at home.

Academic rating

The academic rating is made up of equally-weighted parts: students' test scores, their academic growth (for elementary and middle schools) and their readiness for college (for high schools). The graphs below compare this school's results in each area to other schools in the city and state.
Overall academic rating

2

Below average

Test score rating 2013*
This school
City
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Learn more about this school's test scores »

*Test scores are based on the 2013 WSAS results from the state of Wisconsin.

Climate ratings

This rating encompasses five elements of school climate: safety and cleanliness, respect and relationships, expectations for students, teacher collaboration and support, and parent involvement. This school's climate ratings are the result of GreatSchools' analysis of teacher survey data from the Spring 2013 School Climate Survey developed by Milwaukee Public Schools.

We rated schools on …



Keeping things safe, clean, and orderly.

This rating evaluates a school's environment, based on its safety, order, cleanliness and more. More highly rated schools have well-kept facilities and a safe environment conducive to learning. Schools rated poorly may have a chaotic environment, conflicts among students or even theft or violence.


Creating healthy, respectful relationships.

This rating measures whether the school has a positive learning environment and cultivates an atmosphere of respect. At a school with a higher rating, it's more likely that the school's culture celebrates hard work and learning, students treat their peers and teachers with respect and class lessons reinforce character strengths such as kindness and tolerance. A school with a lower rating may have a weaker learning environment or allow disrespectful behavior.


Promoting high academic expectations for all students.

This rating sheds light on the academic expectations that teachers have for students. At a school with a higher rating, educators are more likely to stress academic success, ask kids to work hard and expect kids to be college-bound. At schools with lower ratings, it may be more acceptable for students to put in average or minimal effort, perform poorly on tests and lack strong academic goals.


Supporting its teachers.

This rating indicates how teachers feel about their school's professional environment. At a highly rated school, teachers are more likely to work well together, learn from one another, have opportunities for professional development and feel supported by the administration. At a school with lower ratings, teachers may not interact much, feel appreciated or have much input in school decisions and policies.


Informing and including families.

This rating reflects how much communication parents can expect from this school. A highly rated school is more likely to have regular communication (e.g. newsletters, emails, and meetings) between administrators, teachers and parents. This may include information about student progress, homework help and volunteer opportunities. At lower-rated schools, parents may not get regular updates and may feel less welcome at school.

Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
Black, not Hispanic 64% 10%
White, not Hispanic 18% 73%
Hispanic 15% 10%
Asian 2% 4%
American Indian/Alaskan Native 1% 1%
Multiracial 0% 2%
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0% 0%
Source: WI Dept. of Public Instruction, 2012-2013

Student subgroups

  This school District averageState average
Disabled students 15%N/A14%
Students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch program 67%N/A41%
Limited English proficient 2%N/A6%
Source: WI Dept. of Public Instruction, 2012-2013

College readiness and student pathways

Students typically attend these schools prior to attending this school Roosevelt Middle School
Lincoln Middle School
Fritsche Middle School
Colleges most students attend after graduation UW-Milwaukee
UW-Madison
University of Minnesota - Minneapolis
Read more about resources at this school
Source: Manually entered by a school official.

Teacher experience

  This school District averageState average
At least 5 years teaching experience 72%N/A83%
Source: WI Dept. of Public Instruction, 2011-2012

Teacher education levels

  This school District averageState average
Master's degree and above 42%N/A55%
Source: WI Dept. of Public Instruction, 2011-2012

Teacher credentials

  This school District averageState average
Teachers with valid license 98%N/A98%
Source: WI Dept. of Public Instruction, 2011-2012

Teacher resources

School leader's name Barry R Applewhite
Foreign languages spoken by school staff Spanish
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

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Awards

Academic awards received in the past 3 years
  • National Arts Recognition and Talent Search (2011)
  • National Merit Scholarship Program (2011)
  • NAACP ACT-SO (2011)

Special education / special needs

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Special education
Level of special education programming offered
  • Intensive - the school offers a full program for many needs and/or offers at least one very comprehensive program for very challenging needs such as autism or complete visual impairment
Specialized programs for specific types of special education students
  • Autism
  • Emotional behavioral disabilities
  • Hearing impairments
  • Multiple disabilities
  • Orthopedic impairments
  • Other health impairments
  • Significant developmental delay
  • Specific learning disabilities
  • Speech and language impairments
  • Visual impairments

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Clubs
  • Robotics club

Arts & music

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Arts (all)
  • Visual arts
Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
Performing and written arts
  • Creative writing
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Poetry
Clubs
  • Art club
  • Drum line
  • Yearbook

Language learning

Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • Spanish

Health & athletics

School facilities
  • Gym

Gifted & talented

Instructional and/or curriculum models used
  • Accelerated credit learning
  • Advanced placement courses
  • Gifted / high performing
  • Honors track
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College prep programs/courses during the year
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • Community college courses
  • School-sponsored trips to college campuses
  • Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Clubs
  • Debate
  • Forensics club
School leaders can update this information here.

Let your school shine!

School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
by verifying community responses, adding program highlights
and more! Get started »

School basics

School start time
  • 8:35 am
School end time
  • 3:45 pm
Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • After school
School Leader's name
  • Barry Applewhite
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Email
  • Phone
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Fax number
  • (414) 934-7015

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Accelerated credit learning
  • Advanced placement courses
  • Core knowledge
  • Gifted / high performing
  • Honors track
  • Independent Study
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • Arts (all)
  • Special education
  • Visual arts
Level of special education programming offered
  • Intensive - the school offers a full program for many needs and/or offers at least one very comprehensive program for very challenging needs such as autism or complete visual impairment
Specialized programs for specific types of special education students
  • Autism
  • Emotional behavioral disabilities
  • Hearing impairments
  • Multiple disabilities
  • Orthopedic impairments
  • Other health impairments
  • Significant developmental delay
  • Specific learning disabilities
  • Speech and language impairments
  • Visual impairments
Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students

Resources

Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • Spanish
Extra learning resources offered
  • Career/college counseling
  • Title I Targeted Assistance program (TAS)
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College prep programs/courses during the year
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • Community college courses
  • School-sponsored trips to college campuses
  • Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Transportation options
  • Citywide
School facilities
  • Auditorium
  • Cafeteria
  • Computer
  • Gym
  • Library
  • Parent center
School leaders can update this information here.

Let your school shine!

School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
by verifying community responses, adding program highlights
and more! Get started »

Sports

Boys sports
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Cheerleading
  • Cross country
  • Fencing
  • Football
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track
  • Volleyball
  • Wrestling
Girls sports
  • Basketball
  • Cheerleading
  • Cross country
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track
  • Volleyball
  • Wrestling

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
Performing arts
  • Creative writing
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Poetry

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Art club
  • Debate
  • Drum line
  • Forensics club
  • Homework help/study buddy club
  • Robotics club
  • Yearbook
School leaders can update this information here.

Upcoming Events

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School culture

Dress Code
  • Dress code
More from this school
  • MHSA provides two hours of dedicated arts instruction daily combined with a rigorous academic curriculum. We are a creative, challenging, and nurturing cultural community. MHSA provides a distinguished foundation for higher education. A unique characteristic of the student body is found in how they embrace differences and appreciate the worth of every person. Acceptance and tolerance are hallmarks of students pursuing and concentrating on their artistic and academic dreams. We support the belief that our common interests are more powerful than our differences.
School leaders can update this information here.

Apply

 

TIP: Don't forget to ask about documents required for enrollment, such as your child's birth certificate, proof of address, or a record of immunizations.

 
Apply now
 

What are your chances?

Students typically come from these schools
Roosevelt Middle School
Lincoln Middle School
Fritsche Middle School

Planning ahead

Students typically attend these schools after graduating
UW-Milwaukee
UW-Madison
University of Minnesota - Minneapolis
College preparation / awareness offered
Community college courses
College prep programs/courses during the year
School-sponsored trips to college campuses
Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
College presentations or information sessions
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

2300 W Highland Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53233
Website: Click here
Phone: (414) 934-7000

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