This Week & Next: Sept 11, 2015

House Ed Committee takes up K-3 Reading Bill
The House Education Committee held their first formal hearing on HB 4822 (Price), the K-3 Reading bill, yesterday in Lansing.  John Kennedy, Chair of the Governor’s K-3 Reading Workgroup, and Wendy Miller, Literacy Expert from Grand Valley State University’s Charter School Office, testified on development of the bill and their recent success with a summer literacy camp at Grand Rapids Public Schools.GLEP’s Gary Naeyaert also testified in support HB 4822 yesterday, noting it will improve early literacy by focusing on annual screening; parental notification and participation; targeted strategies and tutoring for struggling readers; and intensive intervention for those students reading dramatically behind grade level.

The House Education Committee will take additional testimony, and likely vote on the bill, next Thursday, September 17. Check out GLEP’s “Got Literacy” landing page where you can learn more and download HB 4822 (K-3 Reading).

GLEP and Sen. Knezek Give Away Backpacks at Detroit Achievement Academy
Below are a few pictures from last week’s Back-to-School Open House event at Detroit Achievement Academy, in which GLEP partnered with State Senator David Knezek (D-Dearborn Heights) to provide backpacks filled with school supplies for all 120 DAA students.

Back to School Podcast from Supt Brian Whiston
State Superintendent Brian Whiston welcomes students, educators, and families back to school by looking forward to what is ahead this year in his first podcast. Among other topics, Supt. Whiston highlights the need to improve early literacy, especially 3rd Grade reading proficiency. You can view this podcast by clicking the image below.

State Picks Consultant for Funding Study
As part of the negotiations with Democrats on what became the failed Proposal 1 road funding ballot proposal, this week the state selected Augenblick, Palaich and Associates (APA) to conduct an “education funding study” at a cost of $399,000.  The study, which is to be completed by March 2016, has a goal to determine how much funding it should take to make every Michigan student proficient in all areas of the Michigan Merit Curriculum. To date, 39 states have conducted this type of education funding study and APA conducted 11 of these studies. In 38 cases the study resulted in calling for dramatic increases in education funding, despite the lack of correlation between spending and outcomes. Also, results from these studies were only implemented in 7 of the 39 states. We will publish additional information in the coming months, but we feel safe in warning taxpayers to hold onto their wallets!!

Mackinac Center looking for Education Policy Rock Star
The Mackinac Center for Public Policy is seeking a Director of Education Policy to help improve the quality of elementary and secondary education in Michigan. This full-time position involves researching, developing, and promoting reforms to education that put parents in charge, reduce bureaucracy; and expand educational choice, especially those in lower socioeconomic levels. Click here for more information or to apply for the position.

Education News Clips

Next Week

Monday, September 14

Tuesday September 15

Wednesday, September 16

  • Joint Senate-House Education Committee mtg re: Deficit Districts w/Supt Whiston

Thursday, September 17

  • House Education Committee, Testimony/Vote on HB 4822 (K-3 Reading)

Friday, September 18 – Sunday, September 20

  • Michigan GOP Policy Conference on Mackinac Island

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