When Enough Really Isn't Enough

The Michigan Education Association teachers union held protests around the state Monday behind a rallying cry of "Enough is Enough" and claiming there are "constant" cuts to education funding, according to WILX, even though the numbers are not on their side.

William Mayes, executive director of the Michigan Association of School Administrators, told WILX that one area the teachers union should consider if it thinks schools are underfunded is health insurance. Mayes pointed to this analysis by Education Policy Director Mike Van Beek, which found that teachers in more than 300 plans across Michigan contribute nothing toward the cost of their own premiums, and that the average cost of an insurance plan for Michigan public school teachers costs about $4,400 more than the average insurance plan for Michigan families.

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Van Beek told C & G News that expenses must also be considered along with revenue.

“A lot of these rallies, from what I understood, looked at the issue from one side, and that’s the revenue side,” he said. “They didn’t look at it from the other side, the expenditure side of the school ledger. The costs of our schools have been rising for about the last four decades. Looking at those rising costs — and most of them are labor costs — are something that we need to do.”

Here is one look at those labor costs.