Allison R. Donahue

Allison R. Donahue

Allison R. Donahue is a former Michigan Advance reporter who covered education, women's issues and LGBTQ issues. Previously, she was a suburbs reporter at the St. Cloud Times in St. Cloud, Minn., covering local education and government. As a graduate of Grand Valley State University, she has previous experience as a freelance researcher for USA Today and an intern with WOOD TV-8. When she is away from her desk, she spends her time going to concerts, comedy shows or getting lost on hikes in different places around the world.

25-year-old WMU student among 21 new Michigan COVID-19 deaths

By: - March 29, 2020

In Michigan, there are now 5,486 positive cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by a new coronavirus, as of 3 p.m. Sunday, although state officials believe the actual number of cases is much higher. The state reports 132 people have reportedly died of COVID-19. A statewide coronavirus hotline is open 7 days a week from […]

3rd graders were supposed to be held back if they couldn’t read. Then COVID-19 hit.

By: - March 29, 2020

The new controversial Read by Grade Three Law for schools was already stressful for teachers. But amid the COVID-19 shutdown and changing developments, it’s likely to be much harder to enforce. It’s unlikely that students will be back in the classroom during the 2019-20 school year. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer shut down all schools in Michigan […]

Will Michigan schools shut down for the year? And who decides? 

By: - March 29, 2020

Michigan schools are closed for now and standardized testing for the spring is waived. But beyond that, teachers, parents, school leaders and even state legislators don’t know exactly what the future holds for Michigan students during the COVID-19 outbreak.  On Friday morning, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said on WWJ-AM that it is “very unlikely” students will […]

Trump brags he told Pence not to take Whitmer’s calls on COVID-19 help for Michigan

By: and - March 28, 2020

During a press conference Friday, President Donald Trump railed against criticism from governors who he says are unappreciative of the White House’s response to the pandemic, specifically Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. He also bragged that he’s directed Vice President Mike Pence — his point person on the COVID-19 outbreak — not to respond to her […]

GM to produce masks, ventilators during COVID-19 outbreak

By: and - March 28, 2020

General Motors — which, like all Big Three automakers, has shut down its plants to stop the spread of COVID-19 — announced Friday a partnership with Ventec Life Systems to produce ventilators at its Kokomo, Ind., manufacturing facility. GM said it is contributing its resources at cost. “We are proud to stand with other American […]

State medical chief: ‘We are still in the upslope,’ COVID-19 cases expected to rise for weeks

By: - March 26, 2020

State medical officials have announced a plan for medical centers outside of Southeast Michigan, which has been the area hardest hit by the COVID-19 outbreak, to serve as relief hospitals.  A statewide coronavirus hotline is open 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 1-888-535-6136. Information can be found on the DHHS […]

Graduated income tax campaign suspended 

By: - March 25, 2020

Amid the COVID-19 outbreak, the Fair Tax Michigan campaign suspended signature collection efforts for its ballot initiative for a graduated income tax in November. “While our campaign is suspending our efforts to collect signatures, we are not suspending our campaign for a fair tax system,” the coalition said in a press release Tuesday. “We plan […]

Nessel charges Democratic Macomb Co. Prosecutor Eric Smith with embezzlement

By: - March 24, 2020

Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith, former County Treasurer and state Rep. Derek Miller (D-Warren) and two others have been charged with a number of felony crimes including embezzlement, misconduct in office and conducting a criminal enterprise. Investigators estimate the total amount of money embezzled related to these crimes since 2012 is around $600,000.  Democratic Attorney […]


Michigan reports 1,328 COVID-19 cases, 15 deaths

By: - March 23, 2020

Fifteen people have now died of COVID-19 in Michigan.  There are now almost 1,328 positive cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by a new coronavirus, as of Monday afternoon, although state officials believe the actual number of cases is much higher.  A statewide coronavirus hotline is open 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to […]

Updated: 8 deaths reported in Michigan, most businesses closed until April 13*

By: - March 21, 2020

Updated, 7:53 p.m. and 9:13 p.m., 3/21/20, with additional health information Michigan health officials report that there have now been eight deaths due to COVID-19. The latest are a 90-year-old Oakland County woman who had underlying health issues, a Kent County man in his 70s who died at a Grand Rapids hospital and a Macomb […]


Coronavirus threatened to shut down March is Reading Month. So educators got creative.

By: - March 21, 2020

A year ago, classrooms of students would be lined up in desks or sitting in circles on the floor while teachers read their favorite books aloud in celebration of March is Reading Month.  But this year, amid the COVID-19 pandemic that closed schools and libraries, everyone is getting creative to ensure that students are still […]

What teachers want students and parents to know during the COVID-19 school shutdown

By: - March 21, 2020

All public, private and boarding schools shut down Monday and will remain closed until April 5 in Michigan due to the COVID-19 outbreak.  Overwhelmingly, teachers have told the Advance that the school closures have saddened them, even though they understand the necessity during a health crisis. They miss their students and wished they had a […]