EAST LANSING —The following can be attributed to MEA President Paula Herbart regarding tonight’s State of the State address from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer:
“Gov. Whitmer should be commended for addressing how to truly help all Michigan children be better readers, without leaving behind our most vulnerable students. Educating parents about their options under the third-grade reading law is critical work and I applaud Michigan’s foundation community for stepping up to help.
“To accomplish better results for all Michigan students, we must address the growing educator shortage crisis in our public schools — and ensure every student and educator has the resources they need to succeed. Continuing to prioritize weighted school funding solutions that ensure equity across our education system is critical.
“Michigan must be a leader in education. For too long, because of inaction and a refusal to invest in our schools, we’ve continued to fall behind – despite the best efforts of frontline educators to do more with less. Gov. Whitmer showed again tonight that she understands that – and is committed to taking action that advances public education for all students.”
Some key quotes from Gov. Whitmer’s address:
On partnering with foundations to help families navigate 3rd grade reading law: “This punitive law could be a nightmare for families and this initiative will give parents and students the resources and support they need to get through it.”
On weighted education funding: “All Michigan students should have the opportunity to go to properly funded schools. The one size fits all approach doesn’t work. Any teacher can tell you, every student has potential, but their needs are often different. … Equitable funding is essential to meeting the needs of our at risk students and students with special needs. Ensuring that every child gets the skills to graduate and succeed in our workforce.”
On FAFSA Challenge & unlocking financial aid for higher education: “Last year, Michigan students left $100 million in federal financial aid on the table … Filling out this form is important for your future. Everyone deserves a path to postsecondary success.”