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Vote, Please.

Now it's on you. The decision to repair Michigan's roads, to make sure all taxes paid at the pump are invested in highway maintenance, and that sales tax revenue goes to schools and local municipalities, is in your hands this...

A $1.48 Trillion Problem

$1.48 trillion. It’s a big number. And it’s a huge problem. $1.48 trillion is the amount of college debt owed by U.S. citizens who’ve had to borrow to attend college. It’s a debt that’s growing at the rate of $2,726 every...

Too Much of a Good Thing

America is all about unfettered choice and free markets. Consumers daily face a tsunami of choices everywhere they turn. At some point, however, we may want to ask ourselves if it is possible to have too much choice. Can we have...

What Do We Want For Our Kids?

This is not a column about school funding.  Let's get that out of the way right now. Instead, this is a column about what we want for our kids today, and tomorrow. Our policy makers have done a lot of talking...

Reading Now Network Reaps Results

Lost amid the debate over early literacy and the celebration -- by some -- of the governor's signature on legislation placing greater emphasis on third-grade reading, is strong evidence educators can dramatically improve student performance without government intrusion. In just...

Don’t Increase Class Sizes to Pave Potholes

MEMO to Legislators FROM: Registered Voters RE: Our Vote on Proposal 1 DATE: May 5, 2015 SUBJECT: Don't Increase Class Sizes to Pave Potholes Many of you are now trying to figure out what we -- the voters -- said in our votes on...

Be There: Absence is a Dead End

Turns out, comedian and director Woody Allen was pretty much right when he said 80 percent of success is showing up. In school, as in life, absence is a dead end. Kent ISD and its member superintendents in 2016 adopted...

DPS: Equally Tragic

What if it were my child? Everyone in Michigan, and the nation, asks themselves that question as they contemplate the Flint water crisis. Long-term cognitive damage is possible for young children with elevated lead levels in their system. Everyone agrees the...

Building a Talent Supply Chain

West Michigan rebounded from the 2007-09 recession by exceeding job growth in the nation as a whole by 500 percent.  To continue that trend, business and education must work hand-in-hand to help students get a better understanding of the...

School Funding: What Does The Future Hold?

While the Michigan economy has, officially at least, been in recovery for more than six years, school districts are still struggling to make ends meet. But with the recovery continuing, the future should look better, right? Guess again. While the current...

Dear Governor & Legislature: Thank You

Superintendents: they heard you. Teachers: they heard you. Parents: they heard you, too. Gov. Snyder and Grand Rapids executive John Kennedy last week joined legislators, members of the governor’s staff and Grand Rapids Superintendent Teresa Weatherall Neal to announce the results of...

Thank You

I'd like to take the promise of this holiday season to thank all who work with children, with adolescents and young adults to help them become the men and women who will someday lead our community and our country. There...

Whose Top Priority?

Education is my top priority. Our children are our future. Ask virtually any politician a question about education and those are the responses you’re likely to hear. Well, Michigan residents aren’t buying it. Seventy-six percent of respondents to a recent survey...

“Please Sir, I Want Some More”

From our readers: “(SNN provides) First-hand accounts of how districts & staff are serving students and how student experiences are helping them grow and mature as individuals.” “(SNN) Gives an update on things happening in schools around the area that might...

No Time for a Victory Lap

Michigan residents hoping to learn more about Gov. Snyder's education agenda didn't get much to chew on in his seventh, and penultimate, State of the State address. No sneak preview of recommendations from his 21st Century Commission on Education, but...

Who needs an early warning system? Just count students.

I have one word for those seeking insight from the new “early warning” system legislation signed into law by Gov. Snyder shortly after the July 4 holiday weekend. Enrollment. Student enrollment is the single most important element in the fiscal health...
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