ESCANABA, Mich. — It’s high time for a new, fairer school funding system that meets the unique needs of all students and prepares them for successful careers, regardless of where they attend school, representatives of the School Finance Research Collaborative said at this week’s 2018 U.P. Administrators’ Academy in Escanaba. The U.P. Administrators’ Academy brings school superintendents and administrators together to explore current issues in school administration and leadership.
“There is no one-size-fits-all approach to educating our kids, and a new, fairer school funding system is needed that addresses the needs of all students, whether they attend school here in the U.P., West Michigan, Southeast Michigan or the Thumb,” said Dr. Dan Reattoir, a School Finance Research Collaborative member and superintendent of the Eastern Upper Peninsula Intermediate School District. “By funding our schools fairly, we can ensure all students, regardless of their circumstances, go on to college, technical school or an apprenticeship program and get good-paying jobs here in Michigan.”
“The way we fund Michigan’s schools is broken, and without a new, fairer school funding system, our students will only continue to fall behind in an increasingly competitive economy that demands a skilled workforce,” said Ron Koehler, co-chairman of the School Finance Research Collaborative Public Education Committee. “All students must be prepared for the real world and have an opportunity at successful careers, not just those who go to a four-year college.”
Earlier this year, the School Finance Research Collaborative completed Michigan’s first comprehensive school adequacy study that determined the true cost of educating all students to make the way we fund schools more fair. The School Finance Research Collaborative is a diverse group of business leaders and education experts, from Metro Detroit to the U.P., who agree it’s time to change the way Michigan’s schools are funded.
The final report provides a base cost for student achievement in Michigan, with additional funding considerations for special education, English Language Learners, Career and Technical Education programs, students living in poverty, preschool, geographic isolation, district size, cost of living differences and student transportation.
Read the full report here.
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