Michigan Education

Education is a big issue in northern Michigan, whether we're reporting on school funding issues to breakthroughs in the classroom.

Traverse City Area Public Schools

Some parents on Old Mission Peninsula want to know if they can pay higher taxes to keep their elementary school open. Traverse City Area Public Schools has proposed closing three elementary buildings to save money, including the school on Old Mission Peninsula.

The idea of raising taxes to keep a school open sounds simple but is something school districts are not allowed to do in Michigan. An amendment to the state constitution known as Proposal A made vast reforms to public education funding and prohibits a local school district from asking voters for more money to operate schools.

Parents on Old Mission Peninsula are talking about a way to work around that law.

Peter Payette discusses it with David Cassleman.


School leaders challenge 'gag order' with lawsuit

Jan 28, 2016
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

 

Local government leaders and school officials in Michigan are challenging a new state elections law in federal court.

The law limits how local government and education officials can talk about local ballot questions, banning them from using public funds to send informational communications about ballot questions – via mass mailings, radio, television, or recorded phone messages - 60 days before an election.

Morgan Springer

The superintendent of Traverse City Area Public Schools says the district should close two elementary schools at the end of this year to save money, and he says a third elementary school should close in several years.

At a TCAPS board meeting on Monday night, superintendent Paul Soma recommended closing Interlochen Community School and the International School at Bertha Vos in June. The schools have the lowest enrollment of any elementary school in the district. Under the plan, the International Baccalaureate programme currently housed at Interlochen and Bertha Vos would be relocated to Traverse Heights Elementary.

 

David Cassleman

A handful of elementary schools Up North will have a better idea if they are closing next week, when the superintendent of Traverse City Area Public Schools gives his recommendations to the school board about how to save money.

 

But one of the other question marks is the future of an innovative program that has become popular at schools across the region.

 

 


Pathfinder School stays open in honor of Dr. King

Jan 18, 2016

 

Most schools are closed today in honor of Martin Luther King Day. But Pathfinder School in Traverse City will stay open. They're using this as a teachable day, to celebrate and practice the teachings of Dr. King.

"He’s just such a powerful example about what one person can do," says Rob Hansen, director at the school. "One person with courage, one person who has the ability to communicate. One person who can collaborate. Those types of people can be leaders within our community, and we want our students to understand that when they’re three and five years old. You don’t have to wait until you’re in your thirties to make a contribution with the talents you have."

 

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