A Kent County school district that was part of a lawsuit filed by the Mackinac Center Legal Foundation over illegal contract language has embraced privatization, according to The Grand Rapids Press.

The MCLF filed the suit in December 2010 against nine districts, the Kent County Intermediate School District and the Kent County Education Association teachers union over a “no privatization” clause in their collective bargaining agreements. Public Act 112 of 1994 made privatization of school support services exempt from contract negotiations.

Byron Center expects to save up to $850,000 over three years after signing a contract for custodial services, The Press reported.

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The Mackinac Center’s 2011 school privatization survey found that nearly 54 percent of school districts statewide contract out for custodial, food or transportation services.

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