This Week & Next (Jan 16, 2015)

Key Committee Assignments Announced in Legislature
The legislature formally began the 2015-2106 session by choosing their seats on the floor in their respective chambers yesterday. By mid-afternoon, final appointments for key assignments were announced, and GLEP-endorsed candidates are highlighted in bold.

  • Senate Education: Pavlov (C), Knollenberg (VC), Booher, Colbeck, Knezek (MVC)
  • Senate K-12 Approps: Hansen (C), Pavlov, Hopgood
  • House Education: Price (C), Garcia (VC), Callton, Chatfield, Courser, Hooker, McBroom, Somerville,Tedder, Kelly, Yonker; Zemke (MVC), Brinks, Chang, Greig, Schor, Santana.
  • House School Aid Subcommittee: Kelly (C), Potvin (VC), Pagel, Poleski; Zemke (MVC)
  • House MDE Subcommittee: Potvin (C), Kelly (VC), Canfield, Gamrat, Muxlow, Pagan (MVC), Banks.

We offer a hearty round of appreciation to Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekoff (R-West Olive) and House Speaker Kevin Cotter, (R-Mt. Pleasant) for making such outstanding appointments to these key committees.

Governor Snyder Signs Adequacy Funding Study Bill
Yesterday, Governor Snyder signed SB 423 (Pappageorge), a bill requiring DTNB to contract a consultant to produce a statewide public resource allocation study.  So far, 37 states have undertaken such a study, and too often these studies are used by the traditional public school lobby and teachers’ unions to file lawsuits against the state for “underfunding” education.  This may explain why this bill was such a high priority for Democrats. Click here to download Governor Snyder’s letter to the legislature re: SB 423.

CRC Report on Declining Enrollment
The highly-respected Citizens Research Council has just published a new report on state policy options to help districts adjust to the impact of declining enrollment on school finances.

Rep. Kelly Introduces Resolution to Help Special Needs Students
Rep. Tim Kelly (R-Saginaw), Chair of the House School Aid Appropriations Subcommittee, yesterday introducedHouse Joint Resolution B, which would amend the state constitution to allow special needs students to use state education funds to enroll in private schools. Given the significant challenges faced by students with special needs, and the hurdles and obstacles they often face from the entrenched traditional public school establishment, GLEP strongly supports the vigorous discussion this resolution should provoke.

ICYMI: Nationwide Search for State Superintendent Underway
The official search for a new Superintendent of Public Instruction to replace the retiring Mike Flanagan is underway. The State Board of Education has hired Ray and Associates to manage the search process. The application deadline is February 19, 2015, with final interviews likely in mid-March. Initial salary is set at $200,000, and interested candidates can click here to learn more about the position and apply online.

Education Reform News Clips

GLEP in the News
Benefits and Challenges of Michigan’s Switch to the SAT (WKAR 90.5 FM)
Charter School Growth Continues (Heartland Institute)

Next Week

Monday, January 19

  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

Tuesday, January 20

  • Introductory meetings with new legislators
  • Governor Snyder’s “State of the State” Address

Wednesday, January 21

  • Capital Issue Forum
  • Introductory meetings with new legislators

Thursday, January 22

Friday, January 23

Do you support what GLEP is doing to improve education in Michigan? Please consider making a donation to help us continue our efforts, and all contributions are very much appreciated!!


Gary G. Naeyaert
Executive Director