Posted on 07/28/14 at 5:45pm

According to the latest KIDS COUNT Data Book published by the Baltimore-based Annie E. Casey Foundation, Michigan ranks 32nd when it comes to a child's overall well-being compared to other states. Michigan dropped one slot in ranking from last year, making it the worst-performing state in the Great Lakes region. 

Posted on 07/28/14 at 5:46pm

Michigan isn't the only state looking to establish stricter guidelines for charter school authorizers. A policy brief by the Education Commission of the States (ECS), reports that while 42 states have charter school legislation, only  33 states have authorizing bodies that are responsible for approving and overseeing charters schools. But only 15 of those states have set standards for authorizers.

Posted on 07/28/14 at 5:47pm

More families will be able to qualify for free and reduced-priced meals with the new household income guidelines established by the Michigan Department of Education (MDE). The guidelines will determine eligibility for the 2014-15 school year and will be effective through June 30, 2015.

Posted on 07/21/14 at 11:40pm

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) is advising teachers not to change their lesson plans, despite the fact that the MEAP, instead of Smarter Balanced assessments, is being used next spring. The Legislature made that choice when they passed a state budget that requires the MEAP. MDE previously recommended Smarter Balanced.

Posted on 07/21/14 at 11:51pm

The Great Lakes Center annually releases a recommended "summer reading list" for educators. The list evaluates the so-called education reform movement and whether or not those reforms really work.

Posted on 07/15/14 at 11:23am

The Sunday, July 13 edition of the Lansing State Journal covered the issue of teacher evaluations in its "A Greater Lansing Outlook" section. Included is a column by MEA President Steve Cook, "Teachers support bills for fair evaluations," highlighting MEA's involvement in writing HB 5223 and HB 5224. 

NEA’s Cat-a-Van Reading Tour hits Detroit to promote reading

Straight from Who-ville, students at Roosevelt Elementary School in Livonia and Vandenberg Elementary School in Southfield got some Seuss-style reading inspiration when they were paid a special visit by the famous feline, the Cat in the Hat, as part on NEA’s Read Across America Cat-a-Van Reading Tour. Designed to get kids excited about reading and sponsored by the National Education Association and Delta Dental of Michigan, NEA’s Cat-a-Van Reading Tour hit the road on February 24 and will conclude on March 14.

Art Acquisitions Purchase Exhibition

MEA members entered more than 100 pieces of art for the 2013 MEA/Michigan Art Education Association Art Acquisitions Purchase Exhibition, with the “Best in Show” award going to Colleen Redfield, an education support professional from Stockbridge.

ESP Statewide Conference

This statewide conference is designed to serve the expressed needs of the Educational Support Professional members of the Michigan Education Association. Individual workshop sessions have been structured to meet both the generic and specific needs of the group.

 Click here to download brochure.

A resource for improving School Climate and Discipline

A new document from the U.S. Department of Education Civil Rights Division in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division has been published. This document is intended to help local school districts in developing guidelines for consistent and appropriate discipline within the school environment. It is titled “Guiding Principles – A Resource for Improving School Climate and Discipline.” It has been developed to help school districts develop policies for improving student discipline. The main purpose of it is to ensure that student civil rights are not being violated and students are getting the best education possible. These principles are a joint effort to bring together resources to help develop disciplinary policies that will keep students in school rather than suspending them for minor infractions. 

Special Education Administrative Rules

There is currently ongoing public comment regarding the proposed changes to the Michigan Special Education Administrative Rules. The rules are not being significantly changed. The current changes are bringing Michigan more closely aligned to IDEA rules. If you have questions please contact the PDHR department for more information regarding these proposals.

MEA Help Center temporary change of hours

The MEA Help Center will be not be available for live call assistance beginning March 3 through March 16 from 7:00 pm to close (8:00 pm). Members may still leave voicemail and their calls will be returned as quickly as possible.

President Steve Cook in the Detroit News: EAA experiment has failed Michigan kids

As the Legislature considers legislation to expand the Education Achievement Authority (EAA), it should consider the track record of this experiment, designed to improve the academic performance of schools in the city of Detroit.

In just one year, the 15 schools taken over by the authority have lost 25 percent of their students, with a continued downward spiral in enrollment. An independent audit has exposed the finances of the EAA to be in chaos. Not only are the finances in chaos, so too is the learning environment. In just seven months, over 5,000 discipline-related cases have been reported, including drug and weapons possession charges as well as assaults on students and staff. Clearly, these schools do not provide a safe learning environment.

Read full article From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20140226/OPINION01/302260005#ixzz2uRRM5EyG

Cat-a-Van reading tour coming to Michigan for Read Across America

The Cat in the Hat is back in Michigan! This year, three schools will be stops on the Cat-a-Van reading tour on March 3 and 4. Again, the Read Across America celebration is a partnership between NEA and Delta Dental of Michigan.

Speak up on CCSS until March 6 with an NEA survey

If you've received an email with the subject line, "Teachers Know Best on Standards and Testing" or "Speak Up on Common Core," you've been chosen by NEA to share your opinions on the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and their implementation. A similar survey done last fall led to NEA's recent statement insisting that CCSS be put back on track with educators playing a key role in any statewide implementation processes related to CCSS.

SMEA Conference


The Student MEA Conference will be held on March 22, 2014 at the MEA Headquarters, East Lansing.

Conference announcement is now available.

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