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James Harger

James Harger
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James Harger reported on West Michigan's economy, courts and politics for The Grand Rapids Press and Mlive.com for more than 37 years. He also is employed as Servanthood Leader at Immanuel Lutheran Church in downtown Grand Rapids. A graduate of Central Michigan University, he also has worked for publications in Holland, Mount Pleasant and Lansing. He is married to Lisa and has one daughter, who lives in Ann Arbor. Read James' full bio.

Director of Kent ISD’s new center-based program is on a hiring spree

Kent ISD’s new director of center programs says hiring is well under way for the nine center-based special education programs being transferred to the ISD from Grand Rapids Public Schools...

Report on center-based special education programs provides ‘a path to move forward’

Kent ISD Superintendent Ron Caniff says a consultant’s report on the Center-based Special Education Programs offers a roadmap for the future...

Students to finish school year at temporary location as asbestos investigation continues at North...

Grand Rapids Public Schools have hired an outside consultant to determine whether asbestos or other contaminants have created health concerns for the 400 students and staffers at North Park Montessori School. Meanwhile, school officials said students will complete this year’s coursework at a temporary location...

College, careers and their dreams — focus of Latino Youth Conference

Several hundred Latino eighth-graders from schools throughout West Michigan braved slippery roads and chilly winds to join the 20th Annual Latino Youth Conference and hear about the power of their dreams...

‘You’re so far ahead of everyone else’ – Tech Center HVAC grads find challenging,...

'That (HVAC) program just had a huge impact on my whole entire life,' says Dan Flores, now a successful sales engineer and HVAC industry leader in Chicago...

Bomb-defusing robot gets tweaked at Tech Center mechatronics lab

Students in the Kent Career Tech Center’s mechatronics lab are modifying a bomb defusing robot that’s on loan from the Kent County Sheriff’s Department...

Schools and agencies improvise to feed snowbound students during polar vortex

A collection of school and social improvised to keep kids and families fed last week when the Polar Vortex resulted in five days of school closings. Kids who were used to getting their meals at school were in danger of going hungry, according to local school administrators...

Yule Ball puts everyone inside pages of famous novel series

The sixth annual event drew some 300 students in grades three to eight. Costumed characters were portrayed by about 45 parent volunteers and 25 staffers...

New Kent ISD special education director brings a family tradition to job

Kirsten Myers, the new director of special education for Kent ISD, comes from a rich family tradition of educators. She was recently hired to replace Laurie VanderPloeg, who was appointed last October to be director of the Office of Special Education in the U.S. Department of Education...

Equity coach researches bias in school discipline to reduce racial disparities

Not all disciplinary actions are handed out evenly in Michigan schools and it’s affecting how kids are learning. The Michigan Integrated Behavior and Learning Support Initiative is researching how to help school districts mete out their disciplinary practices more equitably...

State program to fight racial bias in school discipline is moving ahead despite federal...

A federally funded program of the Michigan Department of Education supports school district efforts to reduce racial disparity in discipline by addressing together student issues of behavior and learning...

Immigrant parents learn how to track their children’s progress online

With more than 60 languages spoken in the home, Kentwood Public School is embracing its diversity by hosting the EL Parents Academy, designed to show parents who to use the Internet to track their children’s grades and progress in school...

Being principal of alternative school ‘really speaks to my heart’

Danielle Hendry, the new principal at MySchool@Kent, says her school’s nontraditional setting offers nontraditional students an opportunity to live a successful life...

More cow bell, please!

About 160 invited donors showed up for the drive and gave 133 pints, the largest in the state hosted by middle school students, according to Michigan Blood...

New welding lab for high school students is a ‘big deal’

The new lab will be used for a two-year high school program scheduled to begin in the fall of 2019. Experts estimate more than 400,000 welding jobs will need to be filled by 2025...

Caledonia High School students teach third-graders about their favorite explorers

Third-graders at Caledonia's Kettle Lake Elementary school had an exclusive lesson in world history recently when they traveled to Caledonia High School, where ninth-grade creative writing and world history students had written kids’ books about their favorite world explorers...
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