Posted on 11/25/14 at 10:53am

The Michigan Court of Appeals has ruled that the state has no legal obligation to provide a quality public education to struggling students in Highland Park schools. The court said Michigan has no constitutional requirement to make sure students learn reading skills. It is obligated, however, to establish and finance a public education system.

Posted on 11/17/14 at 2:57pm

Lack of adequate education funding has not only impacted class size, staffing and programs, it has also hit school transportation budgets. The result is more Michigan school buses flunking the latest round of state safety inspections.

Posted on 11/10/14 at 4:38pm

The Senate and the House are both considering legislation which would give high school students certification in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) on their diplomas. If such legislation becomes law, it would make Michigan the first state in the country to offer STEM certification. 

Posted on 11/26/14 at 12:10pm

MEA members entered more than 100 pieces of art for the 2013 MEA/Michigan Art Education Association Art Acquisitions Purchase Exhibition, with the “Best in Show” award going to Colleen Redfield, an education support professional from Stockbridge.

Posted on 11/03/14 at 4:19pm

Eleven Michigan charter schools met the Michigan Department of Education’s (MDE) deadline for fixing administrative issues like posting documents on their websites, but they could still face suspension this month over academic performance. State Superintendent Flanagan plans to meet with the authorizers of those 11 schools before deciding whether authorizers would be barred from opening any new charter schools until all issues are addressed.

Posted on 11/03/14 at 4:20pm

The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and the Council of the Great City Schools (CGCS) are promising to work together to improve assessments at the state and local levels. One of their specific commitments is to evaluate state assessment systems for quality and coherence. The two groups will partner with districts to review their assessments.

More students are taking online classes—is that a good thing?


In the last three years, the number of K-12 students taking online courses has grown to 52 percent, according to a report to the Legislature prepared by the Michigan Virtual Learning Research Institute. The overall number of online courses has also more than doubled in the last three years. In 2011-12, 89,921 courses were taken; in 2012-13, 185,053 courses were taken overall.

The effectiveness of online courses gets mixed reviews. For students taking a blend of online and traditional classes, the completion or passing rate was 60 percent. The completion or passing rate for non-online courses was 72 percent.

The Institute analyzed data from students enrolled in courses through the Michigan Virtual University School, students who did all of their coursework online through a cyber school, and students who took online courses through other sources, such as through their school district. Most of the students taking online courses are students who are academically behind and need to catch up on credits.

They do the job for the love of it

In his March 30 entry, “Great teachers have a great impact,” Dale Hansen, political blogger for the Detroit News, recognizes the impact great teachers have on everyone’s lives—from students, to colleagues, and to the community as a whole.

Understanding the Michigan Online Educator Certification System

Understanding the Michigan Online Educator Certification System (MOECS) – Recorded WebEx, presented by the MEA Professional Development / Human Rights Department.

President Steve Cook in the Detroit News: Will Michigan schools run out of money?

March Madness.

For some, it means college basketball’s biggest tournament. For many Michigan drivers, March Madness has meant dodging crater-sized potholes as our roads continue to deteriorate. But for Michigan school districts, March Madness has taken on a new meaning: the growing fear that money will run out before the year ends.

Last year saw the tip of the iceberg with Saginaw Buena Vista closing its doors three weeks early. This year, many other districts are teetering on the brink of financial collapse. Just like Michigan’s roads, Michigan’s school districts have been denied adequate funding to sustain themselves.

To see just how badly each district in the state has been hurt by Gov. Rick Snyder and legislative leaders, the Michigan Education Association recently unveiled a new website, kidsnotceos.com. . . 

Click here to read the entire article.

Whittemore-Prescott Teachers Agree to Wage Cuts

Houghton Lake, Mich., March 7, 2014--Teachers in the Whittemore-Prescott school district recently agreed to significant wage reductions to keep schools open and prevent the district from going into deficit.

Putting the focus on education

In a Lansing State Journal opinion editorial, MEA members Lisa Crites from Okemos and Gini Larson from Waverly write, “As public educators, we believe that all children should have the opportunity to get a good, quality education in our public schools. And all students should have the opportunity to get a well-rounded education that includes extracurricular activities like arts, drama, athletics and clubs.”

Gini Larson and Lisa Crites: See what's happened to your schools' funding

As policymakers debate Michigan’s budget, politicians are rightfully focusing their attention on education. Frontline teachers like us welcome the focus — and urge legislators to fully fund our classrooms and restore resources to our kids after three years of going backwards on education.

Read the entire Lansing State Journal opinion editorial from two of our members

 

Michigan gets $16.7 million to help low achieving schools

Michigan will be receiving $16,757,681 to help the lowest performing schools in the state. The money is part of a “School Improvement Grants” program established by the U.S. Department of Education.

State Board wants schools to reduce number of suspensions, expulsions

The State Board of Education (SBE) wants schools districts to review their zero tolerance policies on suspensions and expulsions in an effort to reduce the number of times they are used to discipline students for minor problems.

Michigan will field test MEAP replacement

Today opens the window period for the field testing of the Smarter Balanced Assessment tests which will replace the Michigan Educational Assessment Program (MEAP) next year. More than 120,000 students in 675 schools across the state are scheduled to participate in two field test windows.

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