education

COMMENTARY

David Hecker: Rural and urban kids face many of the same challenges

BY: - October 1, 2021

If you’re just passing through them, it may not look like rural and urban, including many surrounding suburbs, communities have much in common — and elected officials often pit urban and rural communities against each other in public policy fights.  However, they actually have more in common than some would like us to believe, including […]

Local health depts. ax school mask orders amid state budget confusion

BY: - September 30, 2021

A wave of local health departments across Michigan are rescinding their school mask mandates after Republicans inserted boilerplate language into the state budget that threatens to cut funding from health departments if they implement mask orders for children.  Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said while signing the Fiscal Year 2022 budget this week that the GOP language […]

Study: Pandemic led to absenteeism, challenges in Michigan’s lowest-performing schools

BY: - September 30, 2021

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, only about 12% of educators in some of Michigan’s lowest-performing schools believed that their students were on track academically last school year, according to a new study.  Michigan State University’s Education Policy Innovation Collaborative (EPIC) found that student absenteeism was pervasive and learning was greatly affected in Partnership school districts […]

Congressional panel hears from educators about how to safely reopen schools

BY: - September 29, 2021

WASHINGTON — A school superintendent from a large Nevada district on Wednesday described how schools there have coped with the pandemic and returned to in-person learning, as members of Congress examined best practices for safe reopening. Jesus Jara, superintendent of Clark County School District, which includes Las Vegas, told a virtual panel of the House […]

House Education panel passes bill essentially banning ‘critical race theory’

BY: - September 28, 2021

Republicans on the House Education Committee advanced on Tuesday a bill that would prohibit schools from including “any form of race or gender stereotyping” in their curriculums.  House Bill 5097, introduced by state Rep. Andrew Beeler (R-Ft. Gratiot), follows a nationwide right-wing trend to ban “critical race theory” but does not mention CRT explicitly.  Beeler […]

Michigan has 106 new school outbreaks in last week

BY: - September 27, 2021

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) reported Monday that a total of 1,015,802 Michiganders have tested positive for COVID-19 and 20,898 have died from the virus — an additional 7,733 cases and 35 deaths since Friday. The new numbers combine Saturday’s, Sunday’s and Monday’s recorded cases and deaths, with an average of […]

U.P. health dept. ‘regretfully’ rescinds school mask mandate

BY: - September 27, 2021

An Upper Peninsula health department announced Friday that it “regretfully” rescinded a school mask mandate nine days after implementing the measure meant to fight the spread of COVID-19. Officials said they feared keeping the order would result in the department losing future state funding. Dickinson-Iron District Health Department (DIDHD) officials said they issued the mask […]

Orphaned, infected, in crisis: How the pandemic is traumatizing kids

BY: - September 25, 2021

WASHINGTON — The coronavirus pandemic has brought heartbreaking consequences for millions of U.S. children, even as most avoided serious illness themselves, pediatric experts told Congress on Wednesday. Take, for instance, a young girl from Tennessee named Sophia, whose story was relayed by Dr. Margaret Rush, president of Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt University. Within […]

Dems concerned about ‘chilling effect’ for schools with ‘critical race theory’-style ban

BY: - September 21, 2021

Following a nationwide trend of right-wing furor over how racism is taught in schools, lawmakers on the Michigan House Education Committee on Tuesday traded barbs about race and identity while debating a GOP bill. The legislation is similar to bills introduced by Republicans in several other states that ban “critical race theory” from being taught […]

Kent Co. health director tells commissioners after almost being run off the road: ‘I need help’

BY: - September 20, 2021

Updated 6:06 p.m., 9/21/21, with comments from Kent County Board of Commissioners Chair Mandy Bolter and the Kent County Sheriff’s Office After a woman attempted to run Kent County Health Department director Adam London off the road just hours after he issued a mask mandate for some schools last month, the health officer issued a […]

As Michigan’s COVID risk level rises, so does the number of kids with COVID

BY: - September 16, 2021

The proportion of children getting sick with COVID-19 is increasing, along with other concerning trends across the board, according to the latest data and modeling update from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). The DHHS reports that, as of Tuesday, more than 90% of Michigan’s counties are at high transmission level and […]

Lawmakers introduce bills to reform school disciplinary process

BY: - September 16, 2021

State Sens. Jeff Irwin (D-Ann Arbor), Erika Geiss (D-Taylor) and Adam Hollier (D-Detroit) introduced a package of bills this week to transform Michigan’s disciplinary systems in schools and further mitigate the effects of the long-running zero-tolerance policy that was abolished in 2016.  Zero-tolerance policies meant students were required to face penalties such as expulsion or […]