The State Board of Education approved a resolution on Tuesday calling on Michigan’s state and national lawmakers to push for legislation preserving “educational services to Michigan school children that have been threatened as a result of this pandemic.”
The resolution – which MEA formally supported during Tuesday’s meeting – comes as Congress begins to ramp up discussion about the next phase of COVID-19 support, including the need to provide help for state budgets and maintain critical programs like public education.
While Michigan-specific figures won’t be finalized until after Friday’s Revenue Estimating Conference, coronavirus-driven declines in state revenues will doubtless create a budget problem. Federal intervention is needed to help keep education programs whole during this unprecedented crisis.
The need is clear: We can’t open the economy until we open schools, and schools can’t open if we don’t give students and educators what they need to succeed.
NEA has called for members to take action by contacting members of Congress in support of $175 billion for state education costs. All 3 million NEA members are urged to join this National Call to Action, which will be discussed at a Grassroots Tele-Town Hall tomorrow night.
- Raise your voice in support of the $175 billion Education Stabilization Fund, which you can learn more about at educatingthroughcrisis.org.
- And join a Grassroots National Call to Action Tele-Town Hall on Thursday May 14th (7:00 – 8:00 pm ET). Learn more and REGISTER AT nea.org/actiontownhall
Last week, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer joined an NEA webinar to lend her voice to this national call to action, saying, “We know it is going be a while before we get back to the economic strength that we were at prior to this, but we can’t sacrifice the education of our kids in that time.”
Michigan’s education community needs to communicate the urgency of the situation to state legislators and members of the Michigan Congressional delegation, said State Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice.
“No child asked to grow up in a pandemic and, to the absolute extent possible, no child should be harmed in his or her education by the fact that he or she did grow up in part during a pandemic,” Rice said. “Our job is to protect and to educate children, and we need to preserve substantially education funding to do so.”