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.

House pursues caps on superintendent salaries; eases administrator requirements

The House Education Committee is considering legislation (HB 4671, Heise, R-Plymouth) that would prevent school districts from paying superintendents more than the state Superintendent of Public Instruction.  State Superintendent Michael Flanagan, earned $184,000 in 2010-11.

MDE moving ahead with expanded online learning options

While legislators debate removing all the caps and controls on cyber schools (SB 619), the Michigan Department of Education is moving ahead by setting guidelines that will allow middle school students to take all classes online and give school districts the opportunity to open more virtual charter schools.

Statement from MEA President on Scott recall decision

Supreme Court makes the right decision to protect voting rights, allow Nov. 8 Scott recall election to proceed.

Elections Committee

Start Date

Must have 9 members

 

2011

Maggie Brown (2013-BD-Reg 18)

 

2005

Diana Samborn (2013-BD-Reg 12)

MDE sets meetings for Career and College Readiness

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) has organized a series of regional meetings based on the new Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for Mathematics, ELA and the proposed assessments of these standards.  The meetings will focus on preparing students to be career and college ready and build on last year’s introduction to the topic.

The following meetings have been scheduled:

Learn new anti-bullying strategies

During discussions on SB 618 to lift the cap on charter schools, Sen. John Gleason (D-Flushing) tried to insert amendments that would require all schools to have an anti-bullying policy.

Report shows budget cuts devastating schools

It’s not too much of a surprise that deep budget cuts are having a huge negative impact on direct services to students and families

Judge issues injunction, but still weighing merits of Scott's case

Until Ingham Circuit Court Judge Clinton Canady can decide on the merits of Rep. Paul Scott’s challenge to his recall, Canady issued a preliminary injunction order today.

‘Kids Not CEOs’ video is a hit!

Just two weeks after its launch, www.KidsNotCEOs.com is a smash hit.

Teacher evaluation, school accreditation may hurt early NCLB waiver request

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE)plans on making the first U.S. Department of Education (DOE) NCLB waiver request deadline of Nov. 14 that would exempt Michigan from meeting a 100 percent proficiency requirement by 2014. The next deadline would be in February.

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