Court rules that educators aren’t police officers when reporting abuse

The U.S. Supreme Court has unanimously ruled that teachers and educators should not be put in law enforcement roles when they carry out their duty of reporting suspected child abuse or neglect. The National Education Association (NEA) filed an amicus brief in the case, Ohio v. Clark, stating that “educators’ valuable role as mandatory reporters and caregivers should not be compromised.”

Mackinac Center claims MEA services not worth the dues, yet their new spokesperson benefitted from them

The Mackinac Center, known for its anti-public education, anti-union, and anti-public education employee tactics, has already begun its campaign to convince members to opt out of their MEA membership. Last year, they used full-page newspaper ads, mailings and robo calls to spread their message with little success.

MEA helps secure K-12 spending increases, reading program in new budget

Last week, the Senate and the House approved a $13.9 billion school aid budget that increases K-12 per pupil spending ranging from $70 to $140. The new budget adds a total of $210 million to the K-12 budget for next year, and it’s now on its way to Gov. Snyder for approval.

New incoming State Superintendent, Board of Ed. share their strategic plans

Incoming State Superintendent Brian Whiston shared his draft of a strategic plan to move Michigan to the top five states for education improvement within the next five years. The State Board has a similar draft plan and various education groups are expected to be adding their recommendations at upcoming board meetings.

School Consolidation Grants awarded to six ISDs

Six intermediate school districts (ISD) are sharing $2 million in state grants to help with their efforts to consolidate local districts and services. The funds come from the School Consolidation Grants. Districts had to apply for the money and the six were chosen from 21 applications.

Senate passes teacher evaluation bill with some improvements

The Senate passed its version of a teacher and administration evaluation bill last week. SB 103 is very different from the 2014 House bills (HB 5223 and HB 5224) which received wide support, but those bills did not make it through the Senate Education Committee last year. 

Personalized Learning webinars features MEA member

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) is hosting the last in a series of webinars featuring models of Personalized Learning on May 21 from 4 to 5 p.m. Nicholas Provenzono, a Grosse Pointe Public Schools teacher and MEA member, will be presenting “Creating a Genius in Every Hour.”

Great Lakes review shows urban charter schools don’t perform significantly better than traditional public schools

Charter schools in urban areas don’t generate better outcomes than traditional public schools, according to Andrew Maul, assistant professor at the University of California Santa Barbara. Maul reviewed the Urban Charter School Study done by the Center for Research on Education Outcomes (CREDO) at Stanford University which states “charter schools in urban environments provide a slightly greater test score advantage than those in non-urban environments."

Join the rally to save Waterford support staff from privatization

Waterford child care workers, custodians, bus drivers, bus driver aides and maintenance employees are being threatened with privatization. You can show support for them at a rally and school board meeting on Thursday, May 7.

MEA is looking for teacher leaders for the 2015-16 TLI

MEA is partnering with NEA, the Center for Teaching Quality (CTQ) and the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards to sponsor the Teaching Leadership Initiative (TLI) program. If you’re an MEA member and ready to take hold of your career and learn to lead in matters of practice and policy—if you’re an MEA member eager to make a difference in your classroom, but not sure where to begin—TLI is for you.