Posted on 08/26/14 at 5:02pm

MEA is partnering with NEA to offer a series of 16 new online courses for MEA members. The courses will be offered through the MEA Online Learning Portal so MEA members can earn State Continuing Education Clock Hours (SCECHs) for their coursework.

Posted on 08/26/14 at 5:04pm

Michigan won a renewal of its waiver from No Child Left Behind (NCLB) for the 2014-15 school year. Without the waiver, schools would have to follow NCLB standards that require 100 percent of students proficient in math and language arts.

Posted on 08/26/14 at 6:07pm

The U.S. Department of Education is giving states until the 2015-16 school year-a two-year delay-to use student test scores for teacher evaluations. Education Secretary Arne Duncan made the announcement after more than a year of NEA and other education groups calling for such action.

Posted on 08/26/14 at 6:10pm

Despite claims that charter schools lack financial and academic oversight, 18 new charter schools are opening this fall. With 11 charter schools closing at the end of the last school year, there are now a total of 303 charter schools in the state.

Posted on 08/26/14 at 6:13pm

State Superintendent Mike Flanagan will be retiring July 2015, and you can share your thoughts and recommendations on the qualities a new superintendent should have.

Posted on 08/11/14 at 10:10am

Schools across the state will be starting a new school year in less than a month, but there’s been no further legislative action on the adoption of a statewide teacher and administrator evaluation system. And the MEAP will still be used this school year since no new statewide student assessment has been chosen that will measure student growth—a measurement that will impact teacher and administrator evaluations.

Kidsnotceos.com has data for higher ed funding losses

Since Gov. Snyder took office, higher education has had to deal with a loss of $623,235,000 in funding. In addition to employees feeling the hit of wage and benefit cuts, students at Michigan’s colleges and universities are also being impacted with hikes to their tuition. According to the House Fiscal Agency, approximately 60 percent of the tuition increases students have experienced are due to legislative-directed budget cuts. 

MEA and Ed Trust call for more training and resources for teachers

MEA President Steve Cook and Amber Arellano, Education Trust-Midwest Executive Director, agree on what Michigan students need—teachers are the key to student success and they need resources and training to be most effective. That’s just one of the issues the two organizations support; the other issues are outlined in a Bridge magazine guest commentary, “Teachers need more training and resources to teach to higher standards.”

It’s National Teacher/School Employee Appreciation Week! Thank you for all you do!

This week is a celebration of all school employees and their contributions to public education, students, the community and society in general. 

“Each year schools and communities observe Teacher Day/School Family Day with local celebrations that pay tribute to the contributions school employees make to our communities. We at MEA invite you to observe this important date by continuing the traditions of celebratory activities,” said MEA President Steve Cook.

Several days this week are set aside to recognize specific groups of school employees. Tuesday, May 6 is designated Teacher Day/School Family Day and May 7 is National School Nurse Day. 

We asked MEA members to submit their suggestions for ways schools and the public can honor schools employees. Here’s what we heard:

Cathryn Therese, from Walden AGS Fenton Schools said, “I’d like to have people—students, parents, the media—ask candidates for governor if they support teacher retirement and medical coverage; allowing teachers to have their seniority back for jobs within their schools; union rights restored, and do away with taxing teacher retirement. Not just discuss restoring funding to schools. Teachers have taken huge hits while teacher certification requirements continue to demand high levels of education and skill.”

Spring RA delegates see premiere of new MEA video

“The Truth About School Funding” was a hit with the 2013 Spring RA audience. Delegates were the first to see the production narrated by MEA Labor Economist Ruth Beier.

New guide shows how school boards can help students and families

The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) is a partner in the release of released a report called“Partnerships, Not Pushouts: A Guide for School Board Members on Community Partnerships for Student Success” which highlights specific models of how school boards can better support students.

Use NEA’s GPS to get education updates, resources and promotional materials

The Great Public Schools Network (GPS) is NEA’s free tool where members can share educational resources, create and read blogs on educational issues like Common Core and leadership, and get updates on education news.

It’s MEAP vs. Smarter Balanced; state aid vs. NCLB waiver

Battle lines are being drawn between state lawmakers and State Superintendent Mike Flanagan over the Michigan Educational Assessment Program (MEAP) tests. Lawmakers want the test to be given next year; Flanagan says it’s not an option.

What do teachers really do? Let the public know May 5-9

It’s not too late to make plans to honor you and your colleagues’ contributions to public education during May 5-9, National Teacher Appreciation Week and on Teacher/Day School Family Day, May 6.

Schauer, Brown put education funding first

Last week, Mark Schauer, the Democratic candidate challenging Gov. Snyder in the November election, unveiled his education plan and this week he got the chance to see public education in action when he visited West Bloomfield High School. Lisa Brown, his running mate for lieutenant governor, joined him on the tour.

President Steven Cook in the Detroit News: Michigan schools aren't moving forward

Michigan schools have been far too slow to adapt to the changing world, Cook writes. (Max Ortiz / The Detroit News)

The nonpartisan advocacy group, Education Trust-Midwest recently issued its “State of Michigan education report.” The findings are disturbing.

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