Contents of this issue:
  • Bay Mills accepting charter applications
  • School aid bill slow to move out of committee
  • Pinckney closing historic school
  • DPS to re-examine food services contract
  • Summer school — the new graduation requirement?


BAY MILLS ACCEPTING CHARTER APPLICATIONS
BRIMLEY, Mich. — Bay Mills Community College is accepting applications for new charter public high schools that would be aimed at serving urban areas across Michigan, according to the Detroit Examiner.

"The dropout problem in urban areas of Michigan is a serious issue in need of a solution," said Patrick Shannon, director of charter schools for BMCC, according to the Examiner. "The goal of Bay Mills Community College is to focus our efforts on providing opportunities for secondary public charter schools where they are needed the most."

BMCC authorizes 37 public charter schools that serve 15,000 students across Michigan, according to the Examiner.

SOURCE:
Detroit Examiner, "Bay Mills Community College Accepting Charter School Applications," May 5, 2008
http://www.examiner.com/p-159651~Bay_Mills_Community_College_Accepting_ Charter_School_Applications.html

FURTHER READING:
Michigan Education Report, "Court of Appeals rejects MEA suit over Bay Mills charters," Sept 6, 2006
http://www.educationreport.org/7898


SCHOOL AID BILL SLOW TO MOVE OUT OF COMMITTEE
LANSING, Mich. — The chairman of the House School Aid Budget Appropriations Committee said he is in "no hurry" to put the bill to a vote of the full House of Representatives, according to the Michigan Information & Research Service.

"I'm not concerned about putting it out before or after the May revenue estimating conference," Rep. Matt Gillard, D-Alpena, told MIRS.

Gillard has scheduled two weeks of hearings on the legislation, which has already passed the Michigan Senate, MIRS reported.

The Senate version would increase the amount the state Legislature spends on public schools by nearly $370 million to $13.38 billion, but is $140 million less than the amount Gov. Jennifer Granholm requested, according to MIRS.

SOURCE:
MIRS, "Gillard: No Rush on School Aid Budget," April 30, 2008
http://www.mirsnews.com/capsule.php?gid=985#15078
(subscription required)

FURTHER READING:
Mackinac Center for Public Policy, "A Michigan School Money Primer," May 30, 2007
http://www.mackinac.org/8534


PINCKNEY CLOSING HISTORIC SCHOOL
PINCKNEY, Mich. — Pinckney Community Schools is closing an elementary school built in 1901, according to the Lansing State Journal.

The district's proposed spending for the 2008-2009 school year is over budget by $1.9 million, the Journal reported. Hamburg Elementary School was built in 1901 and has been expanded three times. Students have been assigned to two of the district's other elementary schools, but may also opt to use the schools of choice program, according to the Journal.

SOURCE:
Lansing State Journal, "Pinckney will close school viewed as local landmark," May 6, 2008
http://www.lansingstatejournal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080506/ NEWS05/805060309/1006/NEWS05

FURTHER READING:
Michigan Education Digest, "Pinckney schools consider contracting for janitorial services," April 15, 2008
http://www.educationreport.org/9391


DPS TO RE-EXAMINE FOOD SERVICES CONTRACT
DETROIT — Detroit Public Schools this week will vote on terminating its contract with the private firm that runs the district's food services, according to The Detroit News.

A board subcommittee has suggested getting rid of Philadelphia-based Aramark Education Services LLC, which has held the DPS contract since 2001, The News reported.

At least one union has accused Aramark of keeping $1 million that should have been given to the district, according to The News.

"There has been no evidence of any improper billing," Aramark spokeswoman Karen Cutler told The News.

The News also reported that the Michigan Department of Education has said Aramark is in "full compliance" with its contract.

SOURCE:
The Detroit News, "Detroit school board to consider replacing food service provider," May 3, 2008
http://detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080503/SCHOOLS/805030333

FURTHER READING:
Mackinac Center for Public Policy, "A School Privatization Primer," June 26, 2007
http://www.mackinac.org/8691


SUMMER SCHOOL — THE NEW GRADUATION REQUIREMENT?


MIDLAND, Mich., — As Michigan raises the bar on high school coursework, public school districts are spreading safety nets to catch students who can't quite reach it. Extra help? It's available before, during and after school. Homework question? Try the teacher's online hotline. Borderline grades? Mandatory math club awaits.

And when all else fails, including the student, school districts are offering second chances through summer school and online courses.

Educators across Michigan discuss how the new high school graduation requirements are playing out in their classrooms for a feature article at www.educationreport.org, an online publication of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy.

SOURCE:
Michigan Education Report, "Graduation requirements: Michigan schools hope for the best, prepare for the worst," May 6, 2008
http://www.educationreport.org/9457

FURTHER READING:
Michigan Education Report, "Will a state-mandated high school curriculum of 18 credits ensure better-prepared students in the 21st century? Yes," March 7, 2006
http://www.educationreport.org/7635

Michigan Education Report, "Well-intentioned folly: 'High standards' may leave some behind," Feb. 29, 2008
http://www.educationreport.org/9299


MICHIGAN EDUCATION DIGEST is a service of Michigan Education Report (http://www.educationreport.org), an online newspaper published by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy (http://www.mackinac.org), a private, nonprofit, nonpartisan research and educational institute.

Contact Managing Editor Sarah Grether at
mailto:med@educationreport.org

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