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announcements

  • Jessica Lumbreras, UniServ Consultant speaks at Jan 9, 2019 Board Meeting

  • MEA President Paula Herbart & officers

  • Board of Directors Meeting January 9 2019

  • Gretchen Witmer Speaks to over 50 Michigan Union Leaders at MiARA Meeting at MEA

Whitmer budget would triple literacy coaches to help Michigan students read

Mar 13, 2019

Bridge Magazine March 5, 2019

"The number of literacy coaches working in Michigan schools would triple under Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s proposed budget, a change that could yield huge benefits for Michigan school children, school officials said.

Whitmer’s budget plan, unveiled Tuesday, proposes a $24 million increase in spending for literacy experts to work with classroom teachers to improve reading methods.

That money would increase the number of literacy coaches in the state from 93 to 279. Under the proposed budget, the state would pick up the full tab for those coaches, instead of the current system in which local districts pay half the cost.

Analysis: Whitmer's budget banks on Michigan GOP backing one historic tax hike

The proposal is just that - a proposal. What happens to the Democratic governor’s budget when it reaches Michigan’s Republican-controlled Legislature is yet to be seen.

But efforts to improve early literacy have been a bipartisan priority in recent years. Former Republican Gov. Rick Snyder began the literacy coach program. And both Whitmer and her Republican opponent in the gubernatorial campaign, Bill Schuette, pitched additional support for early reading efforts.

“This is great news,” said Naomi Norman, assistant superintendent of achievement and system support at Washtenaw Intermediate School District and a member of the Michigan PreK-12 Literacy Commission.

“It’s really valuable because it’s going to ensure every corner of the state has access to high-quality support for literacy.”

Early literacy is seen as a key to turning around Michigan’s flailing public schools. Only 44 percent of third-graders are reading at a proficient level. Next school year, third graders whose reading level is more than one grade behind state standards face the possibility of being held back a grade" Bridge Magizine

Whitmer Makes Education a Priority

Feb 21, 2019

MEA Capitol Comments

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer listed education funding along with fixing roads and other infrastructure as the top two priorities facing Michigan policymakers during her first State of the State address on Tuesday night.

Everyone can see the terrible condition of the state’s roads, and the average motorist spends $562 per year in car repairs from damage related to crumbling streets and highways – a “road tax that doesn’t even fix the damn roads,” Whitmer said.

Less visible is the education crisis confronting Michigan, although numerous studies from a variety of sources in recent years have documented parallels between stagnant or falling student performance indicators and our state’s worst-in-nation school funding decline.

Michigan ranks dead last among all states for per-pupil school funding increases since 1994. And over the past 15 years, Michigan students have shown the least improvement in the only assessment directly comparable state-to-state, the National Assessment of Educational Progress.

“Let’s be clear,” Whitmer said. “This is not happening because Michigan kids are less talented. It’s not happening because our kids are less motivated. It’s not happening because our educators are less dedicated. It’s happening because generations of leadership have failed them.”

Continue reading . . .

Maryland invests in schools. Michigan doesn’t. Maryland thrives.

Feb 18, 2019

Bridge Magazine February 11, 2019

"A generation ago, Maryland and Michigan chose different paths.

For Maryland children it has been the best of times, for Michigan children it has been the worst of times. In this tale of two states, Maryland’s school financing choices drove the public schools into the top 10 states nationally, while Michigan’s choices drove public school achievement down. This real world experiment produced definitive results.  

The primary driver of Michigan’s education decline began in 1994 with Proposal A. It significantly reduced property taxes and prohibited taxation by most local school districts to support operating expenses. In a failed attempt to equalize funding, most local school districts are allocated a “foundation grant” from the state. Some districts (mostly wealthy) avoid low funding through “out-of-formula” and “hold harmless” loopholes"  Continue Reading

Michigan cut school funding and school performance plummeted. Coincidence?

Feb 14, 2019

Bridge Magazine January 19, 2019
"Michigan ranks dead last in the nation in school funding growth in the quarter century since Michigan radically changed how it funded public education system, according to a new Michigan State University study.

School funding has dropped 18 percent since 1995 when spending is adjusted for inflation, according to the report. Only one other state, West Virginia, had a decrease in inflation-adjusted spending in that time.

Michigan ranked 48th in per-pupil spending growth over the same period.

“I was shocked when I saw this,” said David Arsen, MSU professor of education policy and lead author of the study"
Continue Reading

 

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MEA-RETIRED ON-LINE VOTING INSTRUCTIONS

Jan 23, 2019

Beginning February 4, 2019, MEA-Retired lifetime members may cast their ballots MEA-Retired delegates to the MEA Representative Assembly, the NEA Representative Assembly, and the NEA-Retired Annual Meeting, as well as Region Directors (Odd numbered regions).  

On-line voting will begin at 8 a.m. EST on February 4, 2019 and will continue until 4 p.m. February 15, 2019.

You can use any computer with internet access - your own computer, your neighbor's, your grandchildren's or one at your local library.

1.   On the dates above, to to the MEA website at www.mymea.org/onlinevoting

2.   Follow the Login instructions:

First Name (often your legal first name)

Last Name

Last four digits

of your social security number  

3.  Click the "Login" button.

4.   If your record is found and the polls are open, your ballot will be displayed.

5.   Select the people for whom you wish to vote. Clicking the

"Additional Info" link next to a ballot item will allow you to read biographical information on the candidate if it has been submitted.

6.  Once you have made your selections, click the "Confirm Ballot" button.

7.     A preview of your ballot selections will be shown. To modify any of your selections, click the "Modify Ballot" button.

8.   To cast your ballot, click the "Cast Ballot" button. Once your ballot is cast, you will see a confirmation page. 

9.   Click the "Sign Out" link to log out of the system.


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