Students, lawmakers push for bipartisan college affordability bills championed by Whitmer

BY: - December 10, 2019

Efforts to tackle community college affordability in Michigan have stalled since Gov. Gretchen Whitmer highlighted the issue in her State of the State address in February. State Reps. Sheryl Kennedy (D-Davison) and Ben Frederick (R-Owosso) spoke at a press conference Tuesday about their bipartisan House bills in an effort to refocus attention at the end […]

State files brief supporting some state funds for private schools

BY: - December 6, 2019

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and State Superintendent Michael Rice filed a brief with the Michigan Supreme Court on Friday that argued providing financial assistance to nonpublic schools to cover costs associated with certain state mandates is partly constitutional.  In the GOP-controlled Legislature’s Fiscal Year 2017 budget signed by then-Gov. Rick Snyder, the state was allowed “to […]

Whitmer launches financial aid challenge as students face college affordability crisis

BY: - December 6, 2019

Almost $100 million in Pell grant funding went unclaimed last year after an estimated 25,000 eligible Michigan students did not file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is taking this on by encouraging students to apply for federal financial aid through her “Governor’s FAFSA Challenge.” In 2019, 55.9% of Michigan […]

Budget breakthrough: Whitmer, GOP leaders near deal as Legislature OKs spending plans

BY: - December 4, 2019

By near-unanimous margins, the state Legislature passed supplemental spending bills on Wednesday as GOP lawmakers neared deals with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.  Senate Bill 152 will restore more than $459 million in spending for a variety of programs line-item vetoed by Whitmer eight weeks ago as she signed the Fiscal Year 2020 budget she had no […]

Survivors have high hopes for new MSU trustee, but renew call to remove several legacy members

BY: - December 4, 2019

As of Wednesday afternoon, Michigan State University’s embattled Board of Trustees once again has eight members. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced the appointment of Trustee Renee Knake in a press release. Knake is a law professor, legal ethics expert and author who has taught at a number of universities, including MSU. Her appointment fills the seat […]

‘Hunger-Free Student Bill of Rights’ bill introduced in Michigan Senate

BY: - December 4, 2019

Students from lower-income families are losing access to lunch and being subject to public embarrassment by schools because of it.  That’s according to state Senate Minority Leader Jim Ananich (D-Flint) who seeks an end to “lunch shaming” policies in schools such as being given barebones meals, having to wear wristbands or performing chores in exchange […]

MSU Trustee Joel Ferguson disputes sports commentator’s claim he called Nassar crisis ‘overblown’

BY: - December 3, 2019

In a Nov. 7 episode of the podcast, “No Filter Sports,” nationally known sports commentator Bob Page described a conversation he said he had with Michigan State University Trustee Joel Ferguson prior to the Nov. 5 MSU men’s basketball game.  In the episode, Page said Ferguson during their Nov. 5 conversation used the term “overblown” […]

Michigan Dems battle Education Secretary Betsy DeVos over student loan forgiveness

BY: - November 27, 2019

WASHINGTON — A long-simmering feud between U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and congressional Democrats over student loan forgiveness is heating up as hundreds of thousands of borrowers continue to wait for help on loans they claim were fraudulent. DeVos narrowly avoided a congressional subpoena earlier this month after a lengthy fight against the U.S. House […]


Column: Democratic candidates want to boost school funding – research shows that will help low-income students

BY: - November 25, 2019

With few exceptions, the various Democratic plans for public education share a common theme: more funding, less privatizing. Candidates Joe Biden, Kamala Harris and Bernie Sanders have promised to dramatically increase or triple current federal funding for low-income students and curtail charter school growth. Elizabeth Warren recently went even further, promising to quadruple federal funding […]

Kalamazoo schools updates sex ed curriculum to include consent

BY: - November 22, 2019

The Kalamazoo Public Schools Board of Education approved a new, more inclusive reproductive health curriculum at a school board meeting Thursday. The new curriculum, titled “Rights, Respect, Responsibility,” includes lessons on consent, dating violence, sexting and gender identity. Other topics include abstinence, anatomy and reproduction, bullying, condoms and birth control, consent, pregnancy, sexual abuse, LGBTQ […]

Michigan tuition prices are lower than advertised, but sticker shock hits low-income students hard

BY: - November 20, 2019

When students begin shopping for higher education options, one of the greatest deciding factors is affordability. But many smart, low-income students in Michigan get sticker shock from the high tuition prices and never apply, unaware that the actual prices they would pay to attend these schools are much lower.  Although the tuition prices for Michigan’s […]

Study: Rising tuition, state funding cuts add to students’ financial burden

BY: - November 20, 2019

Deep cuts to state higher education funding from 2008 to 2018 shifted more tuition costs to college students who are already struggling financially, according to a recent study from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a nonpartisan research institute.  State funding for public two- and four-year institutions for the 2018 academic year was “more […]