Hundreds of people braved steady rain Monday night to show support of teachers in Utica and Parchment who have been working without contracts since July.
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Parents, community members and educators need to take action to stop legislation giving for-profit charter schools a cut of millages that voters approve to supplement funding for neighborhood public schools.
SB 574 would require money from regional enhancement millages to be given to charter and virtual schools located in the communities that approve the additional taxes. Enhancement millages are regional tax levies approved by voters within a region and administered by intermediate school districts.
Under SB 574, the money raised would have to be split with charter schools that exist in the region and virtual schools that are headquartered within its boundaries. Six regions currently have enhancement millages through these ISD’s: Wayne-RESA, Kalamazoo, Kent, Midland, Monroe, and Muskegon.
The bill passed the State Senate this week and now heads to the House for further consideration and debate. State Representatives need to hear now from constituents – especially parents – to oppose this new money grab being pushed by for-profit charter and cyber schools.
“I knew that if I became a teacher, I was going to be a good one. I was going to be there for my students, no matter what. I was going to advocate for my students, and not just for my students, but for the staff and colleagues I’m going to be working with.”
Longtime MEA activist and Lansing teacher Deborah McMillan was posthumously awarded the 2017 MEA Distinguished Service Award, our organization’s highest honor, during last weekend’s Representative Assembly.
Local leaders in Parchment and Utica – where contract talks have stalled – are asking union members from neighboring communities to join them in informational picketing next Monday evening.