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Michigan standardized tests may be put on ice this year due to coronavirus

Michigan standardized tests may be put on ice this year due to coronavirus

March 17, 2020 | Ron French

State education leaders have asked for a waiver to allow Michigan schools to ditch federally mandated testing this spring, due to disruptions caused by the coronavirus outbreak.

Coronavirus sends Michigan families scrambling for child care. And more wine.

Coronavirus sends Michigan families scrambling for child care. And more wine.

March 15, 2020 | Ron French

Monday marks the beginning of a three-week school closure in Michigan because of the coronavirus pandemic. The unprecedented crisis has parents searching for nannies, taking kids to work and throwing away rules on screen time.

Questions about Michigan coronavirus school closings? We have (some) answers

Questions about Michigan coronavirus school closings? We have (some) answers

March 15, 2020 | Ron French

Yes, free lunches are available from a lot of Michigan schools even during the break. No, your child won’t fall behind in class work if they don’t have access to high-speed Internet at home. Will the school year be extended? There are no plans — yet.

Michigan districts make millions teaching home-schoolers karate and crafts

Michigan districts make millions teaching home-schoolers karate and crafts

March 3, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson

Michigan school districts are profiting from taxpayer-funded online academies that teach home-schoolers electives like ice skating and animal husbandry. The programs are legal, but the state is cracking down, alleging some districts are overcharging taxpayers.

Growth of nontraditional school programs costs Michigan $260M, study finds

Growth of nontraditional school programs costs Michigan $260M, study finds

March 3, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson

As enrollment declines, Michigan districts are turning to two-year kindergarten programs, placing teachers in private schools and academies for home-schoolers.

Frustrated by teacher shortages, Michigan educators offer their solutions

Frustrated by teacher shortages, Michigan educators offer their solutions

February 17, 2020 | Ron French

Want to solve Michigan’s teacher shortage? A new report skips policymakers and asks the state’s teachers what they would do. More class support and financial incentives to new teachers would help, they say.

Free college sounds great. But Dems’ higher-ed plans draw scrutiny in Michigan.

Free college sounds great. But Dems’ higher-ed plans draw scrutiny in Michigan.

February 11, 2020 | Ron French

From zero tuition to student loan bailouts, Democrats campaigning in Michigan’s March 10 primary are proposing big changes to higher education. Some question the feasibility of the proposals.

Preschoolers, older college students win in Whitmer education budget

Preschoolers, older college students win in Whitmer education budget

February 6, 2020 | Ron French

Michigan’s governor proposes a big move toward universal pre-K and free training and college for adults in a budget that includes the biggest school aid increase in 20 years. State university funding? Meh.

Access to career-tech in Michigan varies by ZIP code. That’s a problem.

Access to career-tech in Michigan varies by ZIP code. That’s a problem.

February 5, 2020 | Ron French

Low-income and minority students have less access to career-tech programs in high school than other students, according to a new study.

Michigan schools revolt: We won’t flunk struggling third-grade readers

Michigan schools revolt: We won’t flunk struggling third-grade readers

January 31, 2020 | Ron French

In what amounts to a mutiny against Michigan’s “read-or-flunk” law, school districts around the state tell Bridge they don’t plan to make students repeat third grade because of poor reading scores.

Gov. Whitmer launching effort to undercut Michigan’s third-grade reading law

Gov. Whitmer launching effort to undercut Michigan’s third-grade reading law

January 29, 2020 | Ron French

An estimated 5,000 students could be flagged to repeat third grade because of low reading scores. In her State of the State address, Whitmer will unveil a plan designed to help parents get around the Republican-backed law.

Students drinking less at MSU and U-M, but still more than national average

Students drinking less at MSU and U-M, but still more than national average

January 28, 2020 | Ron French

Fewer college students are binge drinking at Michigan’s two Big Ten universities. One possible reason: campaigns to correct students’ “Animal House” perceptions of their school’s drinking culture.

If you drink at college, follow these tips to avoid serious danger

If you drink at college, follow these tips to avoid serious danger

January 28, 2020 | Ron French

Binge drinking is declining nationally as awareness of the dangers of excessive drinking increases.

Michigan offers little help for child care. That may change in 2020

Michigan offers little help for child care. That may change in 2020

January 27, 2020 | Ron French

A critical mass of business, political and education leaders pushes for reforms to increase child care access and affordability for low- and middle-income Michiganders.

University of Michigan provost accused of sexual misconduct

University of Michigan provost accused of sexual misconduct

January 22, 2020 | Ron French

Several people have made sexual misconduct allegations against Martin Philbert, a longtime fixture in Ann Arbor and former dean of U-M’s School of Public Health.  

Michigan residents say they oppose uncertified teachers leading classrooms

Michigan residents say they oppose uncertified teachers leading classrooms

January 16, 2020 | Alexandra Schmidt

A strong majority of Michiganders say the state must reduce the number of schools relying on long-term substitutes and find ways to ensure trained teachers are educating students, Bridge Magazine polling shows.

Michigan inches toward universal pre-K as leaders support 2-year kindergarten

Michigan inches toward universal pre-K as leaders support 2-year kindergarten

January 8, 2020 | Ron French

With bipartisan support in Lansing and a push from parents, two-year kindergarten programs are growing across the state, effectively leading the state toward a form of universal preschool.  

A look back at our most impactful Michigan education coverage in 2019

A look back at our most impactful Michigan education coverage in 2019

December 26, 2019 | Bridge Staff

A wedding planner teaching science. Flunking kindergarten to save on daycare. Protests to keep a high school. Our top 2019 education stories revealed how money and anxiety are quietly reshaping Michigan education. 

Michigan leaders join forces to reform schools. Can it work this time?

Michigan leaders join forces to reform schools. Can it work this time?

December 18, 2019 | Ron French

Business leaders, teacher unions, charter schools and philanthropies are now saying the same thing: We have a plan to improve our schools. In Michigan, that’s news.

15,000 Michigan kids take two years of kindergarten. Is Lansing listening?

15,000 Michigan kids take two years of kindergarten. Is Lansing listening?

December 11, 2019 | Ron French

More families, most of them white and more affluent, are enrolling children in two years of kindergarten, saving child-care costs and giving schools more state money. In effect, parents are stepping in when Lansing won’t.  

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