Labor Voices: Ending school violence not only about guns

The Detroit News editorial board chose to cut nearly a third of the column President Herbart submitted for her monthly “Labor Voices” column, which appeared in today’s paper.  Interestingly, the nearly 200 words they chose to cut explained (with citing’s and quotations) the position Gretchen Whitmer, Bill Schuette, Debbie Stabenow and John James have on…

Hearing Thursday on bill freezing testing percentage in evaluation

After months without action, House Bill 5707 – the bipartisan bill that would freeze the percentage of evaluations based on student growth at 25 percent instead of a planned increase to 40 percent – will receive a hearing this Thursday in the House Education Reform Committee. The legislation, sponsored by Rep. Aaron Miller (R-Sturgis), addresses one…

MEA announces support for four ballot measures

Redistricting, minimum wage, earned paid sick time and voting reform measures earn recommendation of state’s largest school employee union

EAST LANSING – At their last meeting, MEA’s Board of Directors voted to support four of the ballot measures that should appear on the November ballot and recommend that our members and other supporters of public education vote YES on these proposals. 

The Cheap Shot I Never Forgot

By Brenda Ortega
MEA Editor

I remember in June 2013 when Republican lawmaker – now candidate for lieutenant governor – Lisa Posthumus Lyons stood on the floor of the state House of Representatives and derided school employees with an offensive animal metaphor to portray them as greedy and lazy.

A bill was under consideration to dissolve two financially struggling school districts in cities hard hit by job and population losses – Inkster and Buena Vista near Saginaw – and disperse those students to neighboring districts.

Parents and children were about to lose their community schools, and school employees were poised to lose their jobs. None of them got much compassion or understanding from Rep. Lyons, then chair of the House Education Committee.

Lyons was opposed to a Democratic-sponsored amendment, supported by MEA, to require the neighboring districts receiving the students to interview displaced school employees for job openings and pay them according to their years of experience if hired..