New Year, More Work to Be Done

By Michelle Burmeister, Communications Director

Every January we look forward to sharing PAVE’s Annual Report. It’s an important time for us to reflect back on what has been accomplished the year before, and is a solid reminder of all the work that still needs to be done.

Like reports of the past, this year PAVE will highlight three Partner Schools who are making a difference in their communities and empowering students to aim higher and defy odds. We’re also excited to provide an update on the success of Board Corps, as well as share more information with you about other services and resources that PAVE provides.

The last few months of planning and writing our annual report have been a great time for me as the Communications Director to encourage the PAVE team to acknowledge and articulate the breadth and depth of work we’re doing with 57 Partner Schools. Much of this work includes time with our schools and their boards lending expertise in areas such as facilitating strategic planning sessions, assisting in the development of marketing plans, coaching on fundraising and development, and even providing graphic design support. You’ll find out about those activities and many other ways PAVE supports Milwaukee’s high-potential schools in our 2014 Annual Report.

This year we’ve put together a printed annual report booklet, but take the stories and information to a deeper level via a new online platform that we can’t wait to share. It’ll all be ready in a few weeks and we’ll share the link with you soon. In the meantime, I encourage you to glance at our Annual Reports from the past. They include videos of some of our Partner Schools in action, like this 2013 video of Milwaukee Collegiate Academy:

So, Happy New Year and what projects are you looking forward to diving into in 2015?

Creating PAVE’s Annual Report

By Michelle Burmeister, Communications Director

PAVE’s annual report captures a moment in time during the evolution of our organization and tells the stories of dedicated Partner Schools that are continuously striving to improve the lives of Milwaukee’s children. When read in sequence, PAVE’s reports from the last four years show that we’ve been adapting to the complex education challenges and opportunities in our city by working with more schools and introducing the Board Corps program to meet critical needs of effective board governance and leadership.

For the last two years, I’ve had the opportunity to lead a creative freelance team through the process of writing and designing the annual report and it’s been less of an exercise in reporting PAVE’s financial data, and more an investment in our Partner Schools.

PAVE Milwaukee Annual Report Covers

In each report our schools are transformed into more than a name, location and test results – we’ve aimed to get at the heart of the school and share its vision and mission with our audiences. We talk to school leaders, board members, teachers, students and the like to present a holistic view of the school and highlight its importance and progress in making a difference in the lives of students. Each school is so unique in its culture and approach and to see some of them side-by-side shows that high-potential schools come in all shapes and sizes. We’ve recently added videos that take these stories to another level and bring the energy and determination of the students to life.

In the 2013 Annual Report we not only tell the stories of three Partner Schools – St. Joan Antida, Milwaukee Collegiate Academy and LUMIN – through the book and videos, but we also developed a video to explain and share the tremendous progress of PAVE’s Board Corps. You may view a PDF flip version of the printed report and all four videos here (make sure to scroll down the page). And, our Board Corps video is below…

And, I’ll admit it, the school videos often bring tears to my eyes. It’s inspiring and an honor to work with these passionate schools. Any organizations that you’ve come across who produce a particularly compelling annual report?