Posted on 12/16/14 at 12:49pm

The Michigan Department of Education's (MDE) special education rule changes did not make it through a Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR) and will have to be reintroduced next year. MDE wanted the rule changes to clarify language and help carry out federal law.

Posted on 12/16/14 at 12:52pm

How charter management companies spend more than $1 billion dollars in state taxpayer dollars is again the focus of a news article in the Detroit Free Press. "Public money for schools buys private property" uncovers the arrangement National Heritage Academies (NHA) has with its schools. NHA, not the school, owns the school buildings and the contents, even though that's all been purchased with taxpayer money.

Posted on 12/01/14 at 11:59am

The University of Michigan's College of Education received a $1.1 million grant to improve how teachers are trained. U-M will use the money to work with other states to change what's required of new teachers and how they receive mentoring once they're in the classroom. Hopefully, Michigan will be one of those states. 

Posted on 12/04/14 at 12:21pm

In a letter to members of the House of Representatives today, MEA President Steve Cook and AFT-Michigan President David Hecker are urging members of the House of Representatives to oppose HB 5111 if it continues to require retention of third grade students who are not reading at grade level. Both MEA and AFT are instead recommending early intervention with a reading improvement plan that is adequately funded on a long-term basis.

 

Posted on 12/08/14 at 2:50pm

Too much time and too little money keep most college students from earning a degree in four years according to Complete College America’s report, “4-year degrees now a myth in American higher education.” 

Posted on 12/08/14 at 2:51pm

Don’t be taken in by a message to “coaches, teachers, and other interested parties” from a “Scholarship Selection Committee” offering scholarships to “Michigan High School Seniors.” MEA is not involved with nor endorses this program.

Want the truth about funding cuts? Ask educators!

Poll: 4 out of 5 educators have witnessed
school funding cuts in past four years
                                                                         

EAST LANSING, Mich., Oct. 15, 2014 — Roughly four out of five Michigan educators have experienced funding cuts at their school in the past four years, according to a member poll released today by the Michigan Education Association.

“If you want to know the truth about what’s really happening with education funding in our state, the people to ask are Michigan’s educators,” said MEA President Steven Cook.  “Cuts to K-12 and higher education aren’t just campaign rhetoric – they are reality experienced every day by MEA members across the state.”

In response to the question, “Thinking about the last four years, have you witnessed funding cuts to your local school district and school?", 78 percent responded that they had witnessed cuts, with 11 percent saying they had not and another 11 percent saying they were unsure. 

Dues and Lobbying

Looking back, I really didn’t know what I was getting myself into last school year, but I was asked to come to Lansing and lobby against a bill that would expand cyber schools in Michigan. Honesty, I didn’t really know what lobbying looked like. I mean I could tell you what a lobbyist is – but really how it worked—I had no idea.  What I did know is that MEA had lobbyists on staff who were full time and part of my dues dollars went to pay for them. 

MEA's new mobile app for iPhones and Android devices is now available!

MEA members can now access MEA information and news via a new mobile app for iPhones and Android devices. You can link to the app or go into the iPhone "App Store" or Android's "Google Play" and search for "Michigan Education Association."

NEA President uses blog to tell about her Flint experience

NEA President Lily Eskelsen has finished her Back-to-School Tour and talks about "What I Saw, Who I Met and What You Should Know About My Back to School Tour" in her blog at LilysBlackboard.org.  She talks about her visit to Northwestern High School in Flint where students and staff worked hard to move the school off Michigan's Priority Schools list. Read what she learned from members across the country.

You can help make Amanda's vision for her students come true

Amanda Erspamer-Berry, an MEA member and teacher in Marquette's Alternative High School, is one of 15 finalists for a $100,000 grant in Farmers Insurance "Dream Big Teacher Challenge." The grant is challenging educators from across the country to submit innovative proposals that would help students. Winners will be chosen based on the number of votes they receive. Your vote can help make Amanda's vision become a reality for her students.

Loss of driver’s education in schools blamed for more teen accidents

More serious car accidents blamed on fewer students taking driver’s education

Overcrowded classrooms and recruitment issues mean DPS classrooms are without permanent teachers

Detroit Public Schools (DPS) is suffering from a severe teacher shortage, and State Superintendent Mike Flanagan has weighed in with suggestions on how the district can deal with the problem. Some of those suggestions, however, may be creating more problems than they solve.

 

U of M researching new reading comprehension system

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.

Nominate the next Michigan Teacher of the Year!

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) is currently accepting nominations for the 2015-16 Michigan Teacher of the year. Complete a nomination form recognizing an outstanding education. Nomination forms are due by Oct. 30.

New school safety initiative now in place

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.  

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