Posted on 07/06/15 at 2:58pm

You only have until July 14-next Tuesday-- to register for MEA's 2015 Summer Leadership Conference, "Power from the Past-A Force for the Future." The Conference is scheduled for July 28-30 at Lake Superior State College in Sault Ste. Marie.

Posted on 07/06/15 at 2:57pm

Public Sector Consultants, a non-partisan public policy research firm in Lansing, has released a report offering financial recommendations and policy proposals to move Michigan forward. This comes on the heels of new State Superintendent Brian Whiston's goal of making Michigan one of the top 10 states in the next 10 years.

Posted on 07/06/15 at 2:56pm

The Senate's version of the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Act (ESEA) will finally get a hearing on the full U.S. Senate floor starting tomorrow on July 7. In mid-April, the Senate Education Committee approved the Every Child Achieves Act (ECAA) a week after it was introduced by co-sponsors Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA). 

Posted on 06/29/15 at 12:25pm

Two weeks ago, Gov. Snyder's education advisor led House Education Committee members to believe that the Governor opposed SB 103, the teacher evaluation bill sponsored by Sen. Phil Pavlov (R-St. Clair), chair of the Senate Education Committee. Under direct questioning, Karen McPhee replied that Snyder did not support the bill in its present form. 

However, last week his media spokesperson said that Gov. Snyder has taken no position on SB 103, but would support some changes to the bill. So far, the bill has had four hearings in Committee that still has not voted to discharge the bill.

Pavlov's bill emphasizes local control with districts allowed to choose whatever evaluation tool they wish. There are no provisions for training and no standards by which to judge those evaluation tools. MEA lobbyist Christina Canfield spoke in opposition to the bill, saying the bill is not in the best interest of teachers or children.

Last year, the House plan for teacher evaluations was very different from SB 103. That set of evaluation bills never made it through lame duck last year. Those bills set standards for the evaluation tools districts use; emphasized training for evaluators; and created a much fairer evaluation system for teachers. The MEA remains hopeful this year's House Education Committee will introduce similar amendments to SB 103.

Posted on 06/29/15 at 12:26pm

This Wednesday, Brian Whiston takes over as the new State Superintendent. In an interview with the Detroit Free Press, he talks about standardized testing, school funding, charter and cyber schools, deficit schools and teacher evaluations.

Posted on 06/30/15 at 9:19am

With the passage of Michigan’s Public Employment Relations Act in 1965, teachers finally went from begging to bargaining. Thanks to PERA, all public school employees have the right to negotiate for fair wages, quality health care benefits and decent working conditions.

108th House District Sharon Gray

Type of Recommendation:   Regular

Democrat

Sharon Gray                                       

Cell phone:      906 241-4276

Web site: www.votesharongray.com

Email:  graysharon2012@yahoo.com

109th House District John Kivela

Type of recommendation:  Regular

Democrat

John Kivela                             

Cell phone:      906 869-6672

Business phone:          906 225-5566

Web site: www.kivelaforstaterep.com

Email:  jkivela@charter.net

62nd House District Kate Segal

Type of Recommendation:  Continuing

Democrat

Kate Segal                            

Cell phone:   269 282-4894

27th House District Ellen Cogen-Lipton

Type of Recommendation:  Regular

Democrat

Ellen Cogen-Lipton                 

Cell phone: 248 943-1090

Web site: www.voteforellen.org

Email:  voteforellen@gmail.com

Proposal 2 attack ads full of lies, misleading statements

Citizens Protecting Michigan's Constitution, the group who tried so hard to keep Proposal 2 off the ballot, has not given up. They have released another attack ad on the constitutional amendment to protect collective bargaining and working families that is full of lies and misleading statements. The ad is being bankrolled by corporate special interests who have poured more than $1 million on Proposal 2 attacks.

This time, they claim that if the proposal passes, teachers will strike as they did in Chicago, bus drivers will no longer have to pass safety standards, and pension and health care costs will rise. These unfounded claims are meant to scare and mislead voters.

Proposal 2 clearly states, "No existing or future law of the State. . .shall abridge, impair or limit the foregoing rights; provided that the State may prohibit or restrict strikes by employees of the State and its political subdivisions."

Recommendations on Ballot Proposals

This flyer summarizes the ballot proposals that has MEA’s recommendations.  The actual ballot language is also on the flyer. 

MPSERS study goes to Chicago firm

A Chicago-based firm, Segal Co., has landed the $140,000 contract to conduct a legislative study called for in SB 1040--now PA 300. In addition to overhauling the insurance portion of the Michigan Public School Employee Retirement System (MPSERS), the new law called for an outside firm to study the possibility of shutting down the current hybrid system and moving members to a 401(k) defined contribution system.

Cook: 'The purpose of Prop 2 is to restore--not extend union power.'

Critics of Proposal 2 to protect collective bargaining and middle class families may have lost their court challenges to keep the issue off the November ballot, but they haven't given up the fight. They're flooding the media with interviews and ads designed to scare people into voting NO on Proposal 2 with questionable and inflammatory information.

In their latest attempt to discredit Proposal 2, critics claim that passage of the amendment would mean school employees could strike and not face any fines if they did.

MEA President Cook dismisses the idea, "Proposal 2 has within it for the first time a constitutional prohibition on school employee strikes. The right of the Legislature to determine penalties for school employee strikes is untouched by Proposal 2."

Opponents have also falsely said that Proposal 2 would undo laws such as those requiring school bus drivers to receive safety training, protecting students from sexual predators, and requiring school districts to fire employees with criminal backgrounds.

56th House District Larry Crider

 

Type of recommendation:  Regular

Democrat

Larry Crider                                                               

Cell phone:  734 819 8340

Web site:         www.larrycrider.com

Email:              larrycrider56@yahoo.com

17th House District Bill LaVoy

 

Democrat

Type of Recommendation:  Regular

Bill LaVoy

Business phone: 734 241-2815

Cell phone: 734 497-6525

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