Posted on 09/29/14 at 3:44pm

OK2Say, the new student safety reporting system, was rolled out this month across the state. The new program will give students and adults a confidential way to report threats of violence in schools.  

Posted on 09/29/14 at 3:42pm

Interest in a reading comprehension system developed by a Flushing parent has drawn the interest of the University of Michigan and the Michigan Department of Education (MDE). The Evidence-Based Literacy Instruction (EBLI) was created more than 10 years ago by Nora Chahbazi to help her daughter struggling with reading comprehension in second grade.

Posted on 09/25/14 at 1:49pm

Thanks to NEA members in Flint, at MSU, and in Livonia, Plymouth, and Wayne-Westland, NEA President Lily Eskelsen-Garcia left Michigan on Sept. 24 with a pretty good idea of the successes, the challenges, and the future of education in the state. Lilly made Michigan one of her last stops on her three-week Back-to School Tour which has given her a chance to connect with members across the country.

Posted on 09/15/14 at 3:11pm

State Board of Education (SBE) members are looking for someone with experience in education-perhaps a former local superintendent or teacher-to be the next state superintendent of instruction. Their search is expected to be completed by January 2015, well ahead of current Superintendent Mike Flanagan's retirement in July 2015.

Posted on 09/22/14 at 3:13pm

Schools across the country, including Michigan, are falling victim to a scam by a Las Vegas company sending phony invoices to schools for workbooks they never ordered. The company is called Scholastic School Supply, similar to Scholastic, Inc., which is a well-known publisher for educational books, magazines and other materials. Michigan is one of 22 states that have received the phony invoices.

Anti-teacher freeloaders

Full disclosure time. I am a proud teacher and a very proud union member. I realize that that’s a double whammy for a lot of you out there. Teachers have been demonized. Unions have been demonized. Sadly, a lot of folks have bought into that process — probably without thinking much about it. To be sure, public school teachers and union members pose a threat to the political agenda of some very rich and powerful people. As such, my profession is subjected to constant attacks by those for whom a good public education is problematic.

Superintendents: effectiveness, student engagement important in evaluation of teachers

Education Week commissioned Gallup to survey K-12 school district superintendents to help track and understand their opinions on important topics and issues facing education like teacher evaluations. 

Michigan ranks 4th nationally in instances of school crime

School crime has increased since 2010 according to a report by the U.S. Department of Education. "Indicators of School Crime," a report by the National Center for Education Statistics, showed that in 2012, even though the crime rate has increased over the past couple of years, it is still down from its highest rate of 81 victims of crimes per 1,000 students in 1992.

NEA launches campaign to end 'toxic testing'

NEA RA delegates voted to begin a campaign ending the "test blame and punish" system that has dominated public education for the past 10 years. The resolution to end "toxic testing" is meant to put the focus of assessments and accountability back on student learning instead of on continuous standardized testing.

We are the MEA!

I have been an MEA member since the Fall of 1998 when I was hired at Rochester High School to teach English and History. At the time, I didn't know much about what being in a union meant, except that the union reps were welcoming and some of most helpful people on the staff. One of them encouraged me to become a rep, also, so I did. Even as a probationary teacher, I felt confident in taking on this role and had a wonderful mentor on that path. I transferred to Stoney Creek High School in the Fall of 2002, and have continued in my role ever since.

Don't miss out on July 11 early registration for Summer Leadership

There's not much time left to take advantage of the reduced registration fee for MEA's 2014 Summer Leadership Conference, "When Leaders Lead, Members Thrive." If you register by July 11, informative and hands-on sessions, networking opportunities, and the chance to earn SCECHs are yours for a bargain price!

DonorsChoose.org funds classroom projects when limited budgets can’t

Do you need more supplies or technology for your classroom? Do you have a project in mind for your students, but you don’t have the funding to do it because school budgets are so tight?

Calling all MEA members—We need bloggers!

We’re starting an MEA blog and we want to hear from you! Why is being an MEA member important to you? How have you benefitted from belonging to MEA? How important is the MEA to the work you do? How has being a part of the MEA impacted education in your district? This is your chance to let your voice be heard!

Education funding, curriculum changes get Governor’s signature

Gov. Snyder has signed the new 2014-15 education budget into law which provides $15.8 billion to all levels of education in Michigan. 

President Steven Cook in the Detroit News: Michigan Schools are hurting

After years of crippling budget cuts to public education, the Legislature and Gov. Rick Snyder agreed to a small funding increase in the 2014-15 education budget. This increase, timed to coincide with the governor’s re-election campaign, seems more politically motivated than an act of generosity.

But a long record of deep cuts to public schools will not be erased with a miniscule election-year funding increase.

The foundation allowance increase varies by district from a low of 29 cents a day per student to about a dollar a day at the top end. This is hardly a windfall and doesn’t even keep pace with inflation.

Today, we have 50 school districts in deficit spending and facing financial collapse. A funding increase of a mere 29 cents a day will not change that. And it certainly won’t alleviate the financial strain on all school districts across the state — districts still coping with the $1 billion cut in funding Gov. Rick Snyder handed them in his first year in office.

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