CLINTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. — The School Finance Research Collaborative on Monday addressed the need for a new, equitable school funding approach that serves the needs of all students at a Michigan Civil Rights Commission hearing in Clinton Township. The Collaborative discussed its roadmap for a fairer school funding method as part of the commission’s hearing on addressing discrimination in Michigan’s K-12 schools.
“Michigan’s school funding method is broken, and Monday’s Civil Rights Commission hearing was the perfect venue to discuss the need for a new, fairer method that ensures all students have the same opportunity to get a good education, including students enrolled in special education or living in poverty,” said Dr. Michael Addonizio, a Wayne State University professor of education studies and Collaborative member, who spoke at the hearing. “Michigan’s one-size-fits-all approach fails to meet the needs of far too many students, especially those who live in our poorest communities. Now is the time to address the unique, individual needs of all students to provide the opportunities for college and careers they deserve.”
In 2018, the School Finance Research Collaborative completed Michigan’s first comprehensive school adequacy study, providing a roadmap to fixing Michigan’s broken school funding approach and making it fair for all students. The Collaborative is a bipartisan, diverse group of business leaders and education experts from all corners of Michigan who agree it’s time to change the way Michigan’s schools are funded.
Michigan State University College of Education professor David Arsen, who has completed his own, independent school funding research, also attended Monday’s hearing. Arsen’s recent study supports the Collaborative’s findings that it costs a minimum $9,590 to educate a child in Michigan, and that additional funding is needed for students living in poverty, English Language Learners and students enrolled in special education.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer utilized the Collaborative’s findings in her recent budget proposal, including a weighted funding approach that serves the needs of all students.
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