Goodrich, Fenton opt for state’s “choice” program

GOODRICH, Mich. - Goodrich Area Schools will join the state's school choice program in 2010-2011, and Fenton Area Public Schools will remain in the program as well, according to related media reports about the Genesee County public school districts.

The Goodrich Board of Education voted 4-3 to shift to the state program, which will give area families until September to apply for a seat in Goodrich schools rather than the district to which they are assigned, according to the Grand Blanc News.

Previously, Goodrich participated in a countywide collaborative program under which the deadline to participate would have been May 28, the News reported. After that date, students wishing to attend school in a different district must get permission from the superintendent of the district they are leaving, according to the News.

Fenton, which last year became the first school district to leave the county program, voted to remain in the state program in the coming year, The Flint Journal reported. About 277 students currently are enrolled as schools-of-choice students in Fenton, among them 18 percent of the kindergarten enrollment, according to The Journal.

Goodrich school board Treasurer Linda Jackson voted against joining the state program, saying, "We gain, but somebody else loses (if we take their students)," according to the News.

In Fenton, Dave Crawford, director of special services, said, "We are getting the kind of students who are coming here for the reasons we want them - the facilities, the programs, our staff," The Journal reported.

The Flint Journal, "Fenton schools opt for state's Schools of Choice," April 12, 2010

Grand Blanc News, "Goodrich leaves county's schools of choice program," April 12, 2010

Michigan Education Report, "Michigan constitution hostile to school choice," Aug. 15, 2007