This Week & Next (June 27, 2014)

GLEP to Launch New Website on School Funding

Be on the lookout early next week as GLEP will be launching a comprehensive and data-rich public website to definitively answer the question as to whether K-12 education funding has been going up or down in recent years. You may have noticed some media stories on this topic, since it seems to be the #1 talking point from team DEM/SCHAUER/MEA that Governor Snyder has cut billions of dollars from public education since he was elected. Facts, as they say, are stubborn things – and we’ll be providing a boatload of them next week.

Candidate Open House & Education Town Hall on July 8 in Detroit
GLEP is pleased to join seven other education advocacy organizations to sponsor a Meet the Candidate night and Education Town Hall Meeting from 6:00-8:00 pm on Tuesday, July 8 at Madison-Carver Academy at 19900 McIntyre Street in Detroit (near 8 Mile Rd and Telegraph Rd). 17 candidates from ten campaigns for the State Senate and House of Representatives in Wayne County have already committed to participate in this event. Please click here to see the list of candidates, and click here or below to register for this FREE event.  Please share this information with voters, parents and interested parties.
Response to Detroit Free Press Charter Reporting
Unless you’re living in a cave, or have been on vacation, you’ve likely seen one or more of the front page stories in this week’s Detroit Free Press on Michigan’s charter schools.  We’ve known about this series for two years, and it has become abundantly clear the real purpose of this ‘investigative’ report is to support a partisan political agenda of attacking charter public schools.

The reporters here have ignored reams of information provided by representatives of the charter sector, and instead only used information to support their pre-conceived mission to paint the sector in the worst possible light. It’s certainly no coincidence that Democratic candidates for Governor, Attorney General, State Board of Education, and the legislature are asking for new laws to either halt expansion or close more than half of the state’s charter schools. We’ve also seen efforts by campaigns and liberal advocacy organizations to use the Free Press stories in attempts to raise money for use in fighting charter supporters.

MAPSA Offers a “School Accountability Pledge” to Traditional Districts
Our colleagues at MAPSA, in response to media criticisms that charter public schools aren’t held to the same standards of accountability, transparency and oversight as are traditional public schools, have developed a “School Accountability Pledge” to allow local school superintendents the opportunity to adhere to the same laws as Michigan’s charter public schools. A few of these standards, none of which have been reported by the Detroit Free Press, are the following:

  • Operate under a performance contract that says they’ll be shut down if they fail to operate to a level satisfactory. (NOTE: while 80 charters have been closed since 1996, NO traditional public school has ever been closed for failing kids.)
  • Accept any student in the state, no matter where they live.
  • Do not hire anyone that has a defined family relationship with a school board member.
  • Subject every contract for approval by the State Board of Education.
  • Pay 3% of total state aid to the State Board of Education for oversight purposes.
  • Be automatically closed if the school is on the bottom 5 percent of the top-to-bottom list for four straight years.

MAPSA will be publishing a list of those Superintendents who sign the pledge, and we’ll report those to you in future editions of “This Week & Next.”  Don’t hold your breath.

Click here or below to see Dan Quisenberry’s appearance on today’s broadcast of WKAR’s “Off the Record” program, and click here to see the 12 minute OVERTIME interview that doesn’t run on TV but is only available online.

Ed Reform News From Around the Country

GLEP in the News

Next Week [Legislature is on summer break]

Monday, June 30
Tuesday, July 1
Wednesday, July 2
Thursday, July 3
Friday, July 4: Happy Independence Day!!

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