EAST LANSING — The following can be attributed to MEA President Paula Herbart regarding today’s approval of an agreement between Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Legislature on the current year’s state budget:
“I applaud Gov. Whitmer and legislative leaders for working together to pass this budget plan, which will help minimize the negative impact the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have on our schools, students and public school employees. This budget agreement prevents severe education funding cuts for this past school year and, looking ahead, will help fund plans to safely reopen schools in the fall.
“It should be noted today’s action does nothing to address expected shortfalls in next year’s budget, let alone years of underfunding our public schools. In these challenging times, we should be enhancing — not scaling back — our support for students and educators. A safe return to school will come with higher costs and we need federal funding to avoid pandemic-driven cuts and adequately fund public education. To do that, I continue to urge the U.S. Senate to approve additional relief funding for schools in the HEROES Act so we can continue providing a high-quality public education to our students.”