104th House District Betsy Coffia

Type of recommendation:  Regular

Democrat

Betsy Coffia

Cell phone:      231 392-4468

Web site:         www.betsyformichigan.com

Email:  betsy@betsyformichigan.com

I am alarmed at the ongoing inequity of funding to our students in TCAPS and Kingsley.  It is wrong that our children receive less than $7,000 each while other districts get several thousand more per pupil.  All schools are asked to perform to a certain level, but some such as our own districts are denied crucial tools to do so.  The fact that our local schools still perform so wellis to our staff’s credit, but this is an unsustainable situation.  This inequity is discriminatory against our kids and their educational success and future.  A legislative action guaranteeing equal per pupil funding is among my top three legislative priorities.  If the legislature balks, I will push for a citizen initiative to put it on the ballot.  We MUST do the right thing for our kids.

I am very concerned for the health of public education in Michigan right now under the laws that keep rolling out of Lansing.  I am well aware of th current legislature’s apparent vendetta against public employees, and in particular against educators.  It has borne out with law after law passing and taking immediate effect since January 2011, the first being P. A. 4 of 2011.  This law has resulted in individuals with NO background in education running public schools – individuals who have no problem packing classrooms with over 60 children.  I was a leader of the grassroots effort in northern Michigan to get the Emergency Manager law repeal on th ballot.  I am not a member of a union, but I am a citizen of my state and I see very clearly how dangerous and undemocratic this monstrous law is.  We collected over 30,000 signatures that eventually got the repeal on the ballot for this November election.  For the sake of our children and working families all over Michigan, I am committed to fighting for just laws that do not villainize our hardworking school employees and that fully support in both policy and financial backing, the crucial task of educating our children.  The stakes are far too high to do anything less.