Education

Community leaders and lawmakers gathered Tuesday evening on the steps of the Grand Rapids Public Schools Franklin Campus building to stand in solidarity against President Donald Trump's decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, better known as DACA. Following the gathering, the Grand Rapids Board of Education passed a resolution calling on Congress to take immediate action. 

United States Senator Debbie Stabenow continued her statewide series of workforce discussions in Grand Rapids Wednesday afternoon in an effort to learn how Michigan can better fill the demand for skilled workers. Visiting West Michigan on a statewide “listening tour” the Senator is focusing on professional career and training opportunities for students who don’t choose a four-year college path after high school or workers who want to be retrained for new jobs. Skilled labor is in high demand in West Michigan, especially in the manufacturing industry.

A Michigan woman who began panhandling to raise $24,000 for her daughter to attend Michigan State University is calling it quits after raising less than half of her goal. Lori Truex says she'll end her fundraising campaign Thursday to return to work as a school bus driver. 

Michigan students were less proficient in reading and more proficient in math and social studies in the latest round of statewide standardized tests. M-STEP results were released Tuesday by the state Department of Education. They show that English language arts scores worsened in four of the five grades in which students were tested last spring. Math scores improved in four of the five grades from the year before.

As the summer draws to a close, Monday marked the first day of school for many districts in the area including Grand Rapids Public Schools. While the GRPS is heading into year six of its Transformation plan this year the district is implementing a number of new programs including the Early Middle College program at Ottawa Hills High School. The program gives students the opportunity to attend high school for 5 years, not only earning their diploma in the process, but also graduate with an Associate’s Degree. 

Northwestern Michigan College gets $8.8M residence hall

Aug 21, 2017

Northwestern Michigan College is getting more student housing as a new $8.8 million residence hall opens its doors. The Traverse City Record-Eagle reports a grand opening for the 135-bed North Hall, which also includes a fitness center, was scheduled for Monday. The school's President Tim Nelson calls it "21st century college and university living at its finest."

Michigan lowers requirements for English-proficiency test

Aug 15, 2017

The Michigan Department of Education has announced it will reduce the overall score students need to receive on an English-proficiency test after an earlier change made it more difficult for students to transition out of English learner status.

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is distancing herself from her comment earlier this year about the nation's historically black colleges and universities being pioneers of school choice, saying that in the past "there were no choices" for African-Americans in higher education. DeVos tells The Associated Press , 

"These HBCUs provided choices for black students that they didn't have." She alienated many African-Americans in February when she described historically black colleges as "real pioneers when it comes to school choice."

Daniel Boothe

United States Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos was back in town for a tour of Grand Rapids Community College, as simultaneously demonstrators outside protested her education policy. The Secretary is on a nationwide tour of colleges that provide students alternative ways to enter the workforce other than earning a four year degree.   

“There are so many pathways to a higher education, and Grand Rapids Community College really embodies the best of these opportunities for students,” DeVos said.  

Twenty-four teachers were selected to serve on a panel that will guide the implementation of a new federal school accountability plan in Michigan. The teachers were chosen from a pool of more than 300 who applied for a spot on the Michigan Teacher Leadership Advisory Council. They come from schools across the state.

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