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GOP-led House OKs deep budget cuts for education

The state House today approved deep cuts for public education, slashing nearly $1 billion from K-12 schools statewide and 15 percent from community college and university budgets.

The House voted 57-53 for House Bill 4325 (see how your representative voted). Under the plan, K-12 districts will receive hundreds less in state aid per pupil for 2011-12 to pay for huge tax breaks for business.

While this vote is very disappointing, the budget battle isn't over. The House and Senate now must reconcile competing funding plans. We continue to work around the clock to try to stop the GOP-controlled Legislature from cutting vital education funding that helps students, but we need your help!

April 28, 2011 - Legislative Summary

1)  BUDGET and TAXATION

Governor proposes sweeping changes for public education; ignores budget crisis

In a much-anticipated special address on education, Gov. Rick Snyder today called for sweeping changes to improve public schools – including merit pay, tenure changes, more charter schools and more online learning – yet failed to provide any direction about how schools will be able to do more without adequate funding.

Current budget proposals for K-12 schools, community colleges, and universities call for hundreds of millions of dollars in cuts from the state – cuts that will directly impact student achievement, which Snyder says must improve or schools and educators will face severe penalties.

MEA President Iris K. Salters said Snyder’s long list of ideas along with major budget cuts “simply doesn’t make sense.” In a press release, Salters described Snyder’s proposal to base school funding on student performance as “counterproductive.”

Related:

Latest news on education funding

What you need to know about tenure proposals

House panel OKs tougher teacher strike penalties

The House Education Committee today passed House Bill 4466, legislation to penalize labor unions that represent striking teachers.

Snyder school budget cuts cast shadow on today's education address

MEA president responds to governor’s special message on education

EAST LANSING, Mich., April 27, 2011 –Against a backdrop of drastic cuts to education funding, Gov. Rick Snyder revealed his education plan for Michigan today, covering a variety of topics including early childhood education, teacher training, tenure, merit pay, charter schools and more.

House panel takes up bill to repeal tenure

School districts that want to fire ineffective teachers usually win tenure cases, a lawyer representing more than 400 districts testified today before the House Education Committee.

The committee is considering House Bill 4241, a bill to repeal the Teacher Tenure Act. The committee will meet again Wednesday at 9 a.m. to take additional testimony on tenure and to consider House Bills 4465 and 4466, legislation to toughen teacher strike penalties.

Current bills

Talking points on key legislation

 The following key points are helpful when communicating with colleagues, policymakers, and others. Use these “talking points” to jump start an association meeting, a letter to the editor, or a conversation with community members or a legislator.

Budget update: Lawmakers move ahead with cuts

Schools with half-day kindergarten programs would receive less funding, a move that will exacerbate the budget crisis in many districts, under a budget plan that advanced in Lansing this week.

Thousands protest attacks on middle class at the Capitol

Lawmakers press budget plan

Thousands of Michigan residents attended the We Are the People protest at the Capitol Wednesday to tell lawmakers and Gov. Rick Snyder that it's time to stand up for working and middle class families.

Broad coalition of students, seniors, workers protest Gov. Snyder’s budget plan

LANSING - Today thousands of Michigan residents from more than a dozen cities across the state rode buses to Lansing to send a message to Gov. Snyder and State Legislators that it’s time time start standing up for working and middle class families. After two weeks of paid vacation, Legislative  committees will convene this week to begin voting on Gov. Rick Snyder’s budget plan.

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