Posted on 12/16/14 at 12:49pm

The Michigan Department of Education's (MDE) special education rule changes did not make it through a Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR) and will have to be reintroduced next year. MDE wanted the rule changes to clarify language and help carry out federal law.

Posted on 12/16/14 at 12:52pm

How charter management companies spend more than $1 billion dollars in state taxpayer dollars is again the focus of a news article in the Detroit Free Press. "Public money for schools buys private property" uncovers the arrangement National Heritage Academies (NHA) has with its schools. NHA, not the school, owns the school buildings and the contents, even though that's all been purchased with taxpayer money.

Posted on 12/01/14 at 11:59am

The University of Michigan's College of Education received a $1.1 million grant to improve how teachers are trained. U-M will use the money to work with other states to change what's required of new teachers and how they receive mentoring once they're in the classroom. Hopefully, Michigan will be one of those states. 

Posted on 12/04/14 at 12:21pm

In a letter to members of the House of Representatives today, MEA President Steve Cook and AFT-Michigan President David Hecker are urging members of the House of Representatives to oppose HB 5111 if it continues to require retention of third grade students who are not reading at grade level. Both MEA and AFT are instead recommending early intervention with a reading improvement plan that is adequately funded on a long-term basis.

 

Posted on 12/08/14 at 2:50pm

Too much time and too little money keep most college students from earning a degree in four years according to Complete College America’s report, “4-year degrees now a myth in American higher education.” 

Posted on 12/08/14 at 2:51pm

Don’t be taken in by a message to “coaches, teachers, and other interested parties” from a “Scholarship Selection Committee” offering scholarships to “Michigan High School Seniors.” MEA is not involved with nor endorses this program.

Website shows exactly how much Snyder’s school cuts still shortchange Oakland, Macomb kids

FARMINGTON/WARREN – A new online tool can help parents, educators, teachers, school staff and policymakers see exactly how much Gov. Rick Snyder’s school  cuts continue to shortchange Michigan children in every school district, teachers in Oakland and Macomb counties said today. Dating to Snyder’s first year as governor in 2011, the cuts affect everything from classroom sizes, courses and programs, and basic supplies.

Many Michigan teachers won't stay long enough to collect their pensions

Most of the country's younger public school teachers won't stay in the profession long enough to earn a pension, according to a report from Bellwether Education Partners, a Washington-based education consulting group. For Michigan, the data shows only 43 percent of our public school teachers will receive a pension for their service to students.

‘Culture of Reading’ will provide books and instruction to low-income readers

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) has established the “Culture of Reading” program to provide free books and reading instruction to Michigan’s low-income children. The program will be funded through private donations.

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

 

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