Expansion of Failed EAA a Bad Idea

EAST LANSING, Mich., February 18, 2014--The following statement can be attributed to Steven Cook, President, Michigan Education Association:

“As members of the legislature consider passage of HB 4369, a bill to expand the Education Achievement Authority (EAA), they should consider the track record of this experiment with low performing schools in the city of Detroit.

In just one year, the 15 schools taken over by the Authority have lost 25% 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.

While under performing schools and challenged students need help, the computer based educational delivery system employed by the EAA has not proven effective in achieving results for these schools or their students.

Neighborhood schools with local control must be part of the solution, not state government bureaucrats imposing their will over local communities and parents.

The lack of transparency or accountability for its academic or financial track record has only compounded the suspicions about the EAA and its corporate takeover of these schools.

For all these reasons, it is imperative that the legislature oppose any attempt to expand this failed experiment.”

Contact:  Nancy Knight, MEA Director of Communications and Public Policy, 517-337-5508