K-12 education

America is doing great job in creating low-skill workers

If you wanted to create a system that limits educational options and consigns the vast majority of poor American children to continue to live in poverty, just look around you. Whether you live in urban or rural America, the results of an […]

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Michigan has to catch tech wave transforming learning

Reduced to essentials, here’s what happens in most American schools and universities: A “teacher” appears  before a group of pupils and talks, making notes on a board or putting up images, while students take notes. Classes range in size from 20 to […]

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After merger, school districts bet on longer days, longer calendar to revive fortunes

Two Washtenaw County communities are taking a marriage born out of necessity and using it to try a bold set of educational reforms – changes that could find their way into other school districts across the state. On July 1, the school […]

Read Jo Mathis's article

Apply brainpower to get better results from billions spent on education

The education industry in Michigan is facing a coming tidal wave of change — and the landscape is going to be re-arranged. Money may seem to many to be the major issue, but it’s not. According to Gov. Rick Snyder’s message to […]

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It would be nice to know size of classes in Michigan schools

A Bridge Editorial Bridge Magazine recently conducted an exhaustive analysis of class size in Michigan schools — poring through reams of academic research, unleashing powerful computer programs on data from every school building in the state and hiring people to conduct telephone […]

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Mix school choice, state incentives and you get a $400,000 high-schooler

In Birmingham, the school district got $440,000 for one out-of-town high-schooler. In nearby Novi, the schools received $320,000 for an empty desk. That’s what you get when you mix a governor’s reform agenda with schools threading the needle between school choice and […]

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Schoolchildren shuttle across SE Michigan, raising questions about funding, community identity

Oak Park Schools might want to rebrand itself as Grand Central Station. Each morning in the school year that just ended, 2,121 students from outside Oak Park traveled into the district for their education, filling 48 percent of the desks. Each morning, […]

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Fortress Grosse Pointe: In world of school choice, community says ‘stay out’

GROSSE POINTE — When Dan Roeske was running for the Grosse Pointe Public Schools board in 2011, he found himself addressing a PTO group at Poupard Elementary, one of the district’s 13 schools. A woman asked bluntly about one of the district’s […]

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More and more schools falling into budget squeeze

State Superintendent Mike Flanagan delivered troubling news to a legislative panel last week: –One in 10 traditional K-12 school districts in Michigan (55 of 549) are operating in a budget deficit. –The number of deficit districts has doubled since 2008, when only […]

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Land O Links

*Confused about the claims over school funding? Is it going up, as Gov. Rick Snyder and allies claim, or down, as school groups say? The nonpartisan Citizens Research Council of Michigan dives into the numbers to offer an answer: Per pupil funding […]

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Class in Upper Peninsula school sparks students’ interest in powering the world

MARQUETTE — Doug Elliott’s class at Ishpeming’s Westwood High School goes way beyond the focus of many a shop class: making wooden birdhouses, shelves and such. Elliott’s students get into computer numerical control and sensors. Entitled “Survival in an Electrical World,” the […]

Read Christie Bleck's article

Guest commentary: Keep world-class standards for Michigan learners

By Doug Rothwell/Business Leaders for Michigan This year, Michigan public schools began using the kind of high-quality content standards that our kids need to be competitive in the 21st century. Used by 45 states, the Common Core State Standards specify what students should be […]

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Guest commentary: In Detroit, put the value of early learning to work for all children

By Katherine Foran/Excellent Schools Detroit “We are consumed by issues of remediation,” Dan Varner, CEO of Excellent Schools Detroit, observed. We struggle with costly “fixes,” targeting academic failure, high dropout rates, unemployment, low wages, higher substance abuse and incarceration rates, poorer health outcomes […]

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Land O Links

*Troubling information as Michigan charges into gardening season: “Heavy use of the world’s most popular herbicide, Roundup, could be linked to a range of health problems and diseases, including Parkinson’s, infertility and cancers, according to a new study.” *An analysis of financial […]

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Long-simmering GOP-MEA ‘war’ intensifies going into 2014

The Michigan Education Association and Michigan Republican Party are on speaking terms – sort of. Last year, the two sides regularly exchanged plenty of words – words such as “protecting sexual predators,” “hijack,” “robber” and “lying.” In recent years, the MEA has spent […]

Read Rick Haglund's article

Guest commentary: Why do EAA critics want children trapped in failing schools?

By John William Covington/Education Achievement Authority Rep. Ellen Lipton’s comments about the Education Achievement Authority are an example of the way so much of the educational establishment and their political allies are trying to kill an innovative approach to educating young people who […]

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Land O Links

*Not all charter schools in Michigan are alike. Some focus on quality; others focus on marketing to attract parental attention, reports Michigan Radio. This leaves some high-quality charters still struggling to enroll students. *In Indiana, “lawmakers are considering forgiving $12 million in loans […]

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Schools, colleges aren’t preparing students for careers in Michigan

Paul Hillegonds, who these days is a vice president at DTE Energy, is one of Michigan’s most plugged-in and thoughtful people. Whenever something valuable and useful is going on in our state, Paul, a former speaker of the Michigan House of Representatives, […]

Read Phil Power's column

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