Posted on 10/20/14 at 2:59pm

The Michigan Public Schools Partnership (MPSP) has launched InspirED, a newsletter featuring the innovative and inspiring stories happening every day for Michigan's 1.5 million public school students. 

Posted on 10/20/14 at 2:57pm

Michigan is one of 16 states that will probably be looking for flexibility from No Child Left Behind (NCLB) standards that call for using student test scores in teacher evaluations. The U.S. Department of Education (DOE) is offering to give states that already have an NCLB waiver even longer to create new assessments. Currently, the state still doesn't have an assessment that measures student growth.

Posted on 10/20/14 at 2:56pm

According to a report released last month by the National Center for Homeless Education (NCHE), nearly 1.26 million homeless students in primary and secondary grades across the country were enrolled in the 2012-13 school year. 

Posted on 10/14/14 at 9:53am

MEA members can now access MEA information and news via a new mobile app for iPhones and Android devices. You can link to the app or go into the iPhone "App Store" or Android's "Google Play" and search for "Michigan Education Association."

Posted on 10/14/14 at 9:04am

Amanda Erspamer-Berry, an MEA member and teacher in Marquette's Alternative High School, is one of 15 finalists for a $100,000 grant in Farmers Insurance "Dream Big Teacher Challenge." The grant is challenging educators from across the country to submit innovative proposals that would help students. Winners will be chosen based on the number of votes they receive. Your vote can help make Amanda's vision become a reality for her students.

Posted on 10/14/14 at 9:08am

NEA President Lily Eskelsen has finished her Back-to-School Tour and talks about "What I Saw, Who I Met and What You Should Know About My Back to School Tour" in her blog at LilysBlackboard.org.  She talks about her visit to Northwestern High School in Flint where students and staff worked hard to move the school off Michigan's Priority Schools list. Read what she learned from members across the country.

NEA’s Cat-a-Van Reading Tour hits Detroit to promote reading

Straight from Who-ville, students at Roosevelt Elementary School in Livonia and Vandenberg Elementary School in Southfield got some Seuss-style reading inspiration when they were paid a special visit by the famous feline, the Cat in the Hat, as part on NEA’s Read Across America Cat-a-Van Reading Tour. Designed to get kids excited about reading and sponsored by the National Education Association and Delta Dental of Michigan, NEA’s Cat-a-Van Reading Tour hit the road on February 24 and will conclude on March 14.

Art Acquisitions Purchase Exhibition

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.

A resource for improving School Climate and Discipline

A new document from the U.S. Department of Education Civil Rights Division in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division has been published. This document is intended to help local school districts in developing guidelines for consistent and appropriate discipline within the school environment. It is titled “Guiding Principles – A Resource for Improving School Climate and Discipline.” It has been developed to help school districts develop policies for improving student discipline. The main purpose of it is to ensure that student civil rights are not being violated and students are getting the best education possible. These principles are a joint effort to bring together resources to help develop disciplinary policies that will keep students in school rather than suspending them for minor infractions. 

Special Education Administrative Rules

There is currently ongoing public comment regarding the proposed changes to the Michigan Special Education Administrative Rules. The rules are not being significantly changed. The current changes are bringing Michigan more closely aligned to IDEA rules. If you have questions please contact the PDHR department for more information regarding these proposals.

MEA Help Center temporary change of hours

The MEA Help Center will be not be available for live call assistance beginning March 3 through March 16 from 7:00 pm to close (8:00 pm). Members may still leave voicemail and their calls will be returned as quickly as possible.

President Steve Cook in the Detroit News: EAA experiment has failed Michigan kids

As the Legislature considers legislation to expand the Education Achievement Authority (EAA), it should consider the track record of this experiment, designed to improve the academic performance of schools in the city of Detroit.

In just one year, the 15 schools taken over by the authority have lost 25 percent of their students, with a continued downward spiral in enrollment. An independent audit has exposed the finances of the EAA to be in chaos. Not only are the finances in chaos, so too is the learning environment. In just seven months, over 5,000 discipline-related cases have been reported, including drug and weapons possession charges as well as assaults on students and staff. Clearly, these schools do not provide a safe learning environment.

Read full article From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20140226/OPINION01/302260005#ixzz2uRRM5EyG

Cat-a-Van reading tour coming to Michigan for Read Across America

The Cat in the Hat is back in Michigan! This year, three schools will be stops on the Cat-a-Van reading tour on March 3 and 4. Again, the Read Across America celebration is a partnership between NEA and Delta Dental of Michigan.

Speak up on CCSS until March 6 with an NEA survey

If you've received an email with the subject line, "Teachers Know Best on Standards and Testing" or "Speak Up on Common Core," you've been chosen by NEA to share your opinions on the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and their implementation. A similar survey done last fall led to NEA's recent statement insisting that CCSS be put back on track with educators playing a key role in any statewide implementation processes related to CCSS.

Expansion of Failed EAA a Bad Idea

EAST LANSING, Mich., February 18, 2014--The following statement can be attributed to Steven Cook, President, Michigan Education Association:

“As members of the legislature consider passage of HB 4369, a bill to expand the Education Achievement Authority (EAA), they should consider the track record of this experiment with low performing schools in the city of Detroit.

OCC faculty vote ‘no confidence’ in chancellor

“After much consideration, we, as an organization, decided to publicly express our concerns about Chancellor Meyer’s lack of leadership and absence of vision for student success,” said Mary Ann McGee, president of the OCC Faculty Association.

The faculty is particularly concerned with Meyer’s lack of vision when it comes to student success. The College is missing targets on student success measures, such as graduation and retention rates and developmental education success.

The faculty filed a lawsuit to gain access to consultant reports that recommended changes to academic programs, policies, and student support services that address student achievement and future success.

According to McGee, “Meyer’s decisions undercut collaboration and represent an unwillingness to communicate that shows a lack of respect, honesty and transparency which destroys trust.” The faculty points to data which shows the College has the lowest number of instructional staff per 100 students, yet he continues to make financial decisions which negatively impact student learning. 

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