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James Harger

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James Harger left School News Network in January of 2020. James previously 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.

Workshop offers students with special needs a day of fun and learning

Nearly 300 students from Kent, Ionia and Montcalm counties gathered at the Building Healthy Relationships conference sponsored by a grant aimed at promoting positive behavior among at-risk youth...

Kent ISD program helps launch aviation careers for high schoolers

High school students who attend the aviation programs at the Kent Career Tech Center get a head start on their aviation careers by learning the fundamentals of aircraft maintenance and electronics...

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...

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...

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...

Students to finish school year at temporary location as asbestos investigation continues at North Park Montessori School

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...

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...

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...

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...
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