Roadblocks to Reform?: A Review of Union Contracts in Michigan Schools

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Audrey Spalding, director of education policy, explains the results of a survey of teachers union contracts in use in Michigan's public schools. She finds that many of the legislative reforms passed in 2011 that were aimed at improving teacher quality in Michigan have been inconsistently implemented in school districts. Many districts appear to still be bargaining over prohibited subjects, and many others appear only to comply with the laws in limited ways. This lack of consistent implementation throws into question the effectiveness of the 2011 reforms, and appears to seriously hinder schools' ability to attract, retain and reward excellent teachers.