detroit public schools http://michiganradio.org en The Best Classroom Project: Helping Detroit parents navigate a confusing school landscape http://michiganradio.org/post/best-classroom-project-helping-detroit-parents-navigate-confusing-school-landscape <p>This week, the Detroit Journalism Cooperative is looking at how the city is functioning under bankruptcy.</p><p>Mayor Mike Duggan says his top priority is reversing the city’s long population decline.</p><p>But there are a couple key quality of life issues Duggan has no control over. One of them is the city’s schools.</p><p>Here’s <a href="http://bridgemi.com/2014/06/benchmark-schools/">the story of one Detroit family’s effort to find good schools.</a></p><p></p><p></p><p><strong>Meet the Hills</strong></p> Fri, 27 Jun 2014 11:00:00 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 18178 at http://michiganradio.org The Best Classroom Project: Helping Detroit parents navigate a confusing school landscape This is bigger than the usual story of a free-spending administrator running amok http://michiganradio.org/post/bigger-usual-story-free-spending-administrator-running-amok <p>To the surprise of no one, John Covington resigned abruptly yesterday, with a year left on his expensive contract.&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">He was the controversial head of Detroit’s controversial Education Achievement Authority, usually known as the </span>EAA<span style="line-height: 1.5;">.</span></p><p>Both Covington and Gov. Rick Snyder insisted he wasn’t fired. This was clearly for appearances sake, and for appearances’ sake, both men are probably lucky they are not Pinocchio.</p><p>For the last year, there has been a steady stream of stories about problems with the authority, which was set up to run 15 of Detroit’s worst schools. Most recently, we learned that it has been spending hundreds of thousands of dollars in travel, sending administrators and teachers to a lot of expensive conferences.</p><p>The Detroit News revealed the authority spent $10,000 on gas for Covington’s chauffeur-driven car, money that could have been spent on teachers, computers and the classroom. So he is gone, and the people I know there won’t miss him.</p><p>But this has more importance than the usual story of one free-spending administrator running amok. And that is because Gov. Snyder wants to expand the EAA to at least 50 schools statewide. A bill that would allow that has passed the state House of Representatives, but hasn’t yet made it through the Senate. It should now be clear that they need to go slow.</p><p> Tue, 17 Jun 2014 16:08:30 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 18032 at http://michiganradio.org This is bigger than the usual story of a free-spending administrator running amok Detroit Public Schools misses out on $4 million in Head Start funds http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-public-schools-misses-out-4-million-head-start-funds <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">When you are a school district where more than 80% of your students live in poverty, every penny that helps those students is critical.</span></p><p>And that's why there has been a collective gasp of disbelief, even anger, with the news that Detroit Public Schools has lost $4 million in Head Start funding.</p><p>The reason DPS lost the money is because they missed the application deadline.</p><p>A school spokesperson blamed a technical problem in uploading the application.</p><p>Detroit Free Press columnist Rochelle Riley joined us on our show.</p><p><em>*Listen to our conversation with Rochelle above.</em></p><p> Wed, 11 Jun 2014 22:35:10 +0000 Stateside Staff 17953 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit Public Schools misses out on $4 million in Head Start funds Someone needs to be blamed for Detroit Public Schools' Head Start funding loss http://michiganradio.org/post/someone-needs-be-blamed-detroit-public-schools-head-start-funding-loss <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">I woke up this morning feeling sorry for someone I admire, the distinguished and dignified educator Glenda Price, a woman who didn’t even live in Michigan till late middle age, but who has made immense contributions to this community.</span></p><p>Last year, Price gallantly agreed to take on leadership of the Detroit Public Schools Foundation, which tries to raise money to help the city’s terribly troubled public schools.</p><p>That’s a fairly thankless task, and one that just got a lot harder. We learned this week that thanks to incompetence, laziness, stupidity or most likely all three, the district failed or forgot to apply for federal Head Start funding this year. That is absolutely mind-blowing.</p><p>Head Start is perhaps the best anti-poverty program the federal government ever invented. And it is needed in Detroit more than almost anywhere. Almost 80% of Detroit School children live in poverty. They are unlikely to be ready for school. Early intervention is crucial, and Head Start has been vital in giving a boost to hundreds of four-year-olds every year. But not this year.</p><p> Wed, 11 Jun 2014 13:58:58 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 17947 at http://michiganradio.org Someone needs to be blamed for Detroit Public Schools' Head Start funding loss Detroit may have to close 26 schools http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-may-have-close-26-schools <p>Detroit Public Schools spokeswoman Michelle Zdrodowski&nbsp;(say "<span style="font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 15.55px;">stroh-dow-ski") wants you to know that administrators get it: Nobody likes closing schools.&nbsp;</span></p><p>"We look at a school as the anchor or the center of a&nbsp; neighborhood. And for us to take it away could do some serious damage, and we don't want to do that," she says.</p><div><p>But they do have a $120 million deficit this year.</p><p> Tue, 27 May 2014 22:16:27 +0000 Kate Wells 17769 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit may have to close 26 schools Detroit Public Schools looking for new teachers http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-public-schools-looking-new-teachers <p>The Detroit Public Schools is hiring new teachers for the upcoming school year.</p><p>The district is hosting <a href="http://detroitk12.org/content/2014/04/23/dps-to-host-teacher-career-fair-apr-30-to-fill-open-positions-for-2014-15-school-year/">a teacher recruitment fair Wednesday</a> at Renaissance High School.</p><p>The district is looking to fill 300 to 400 positions, says DPS spokeswoman Michelle Zdrodowski.</p><p>In its ongoing effort to cut costs, the district is offering more generous buyouts to some of its more highly-paid teachers.</p> Wed, 30 Apr 2014 11:00:00 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 17414 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit Public Schools looking for new teachers The return of Artpod! http://michiganradio.org/post/return-artpod <p></p><p>It's been a long, stupidly cold and soul-killing winter.&nbsp;</p><p>Few people know that Artpod&nbsp;cannot survive until we've had at least three days above 70 degrees.</p><p>So it's only now that Artpod can emerge from hibernation,&nbsp;&nbsp;much the way men's feet are unfortunately baring themselves to the world in flip flops again. &nbsp;</p> Tue, 22 Apr 2014 17:13:22 +0000 Kate Wells 17304 at http://michiganradio.org The return of Artpod! Lessenberry talks education funding, ballot proposals, Detroit bankrupty and Detroit Public Schools http://michiganradio.org/post/lessenberry-talks-education-funding-ballot-proposals-detroit-bankrupty-and-detroit-public <p>This <em>Week in Michigan Politics</em> Christina Shockley and Jack Lessenberry discuss the top political headlines of the week. This week's topic include:</p><ul><li>Proposals to <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/state-board-education-tries-make-school-funding-central-election-issue">boost school funding</a>.</li><li><a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/wolf-hunt-opponents-challenge-michigan-law-limiting-who-can-circulate-petitions">Drama</a> over Michigan's restrictions on how ballot campaigns can collect signatures.</li><li>How a bankruptcy plan for Detroit might come as early as next week.</li><li>How Detroit Public Schools have lost a collective 160 days from power outages.</li></ul><p>Listen to the full interview below</p><p></p><p> Wed, 12 Feb 2014 13:31:52 +0000 Jack Lessenberry, Christina Shockley & Emily Fox 16407 at http://michiganradio.org Lessenberry talks education funding, ballot proposals, Detroit bankrupty and Detroit Public Schools The long road ahead for Detroit education reform http://michiganradio.org/post/long-road-ahead-detroit-education-reform <p><em><strong>Benchmark: Schools</strong></em></p><p>Ana Rosa Cabrera joined several moms in a classroom at Bennett Elementary for a&nbsp;Zumba&nbsp;session one morning earlier this month. The moms stretched and danced as their instructor, a Spanish-speaking ball of energy dressed in fluorescent greens, directed them in&nbsp;merengue-like&nbsp;maneuvers from a DVD playing on a TV screen.</p> Mon, 03 Feb 2014 17:44:31 +0000 Chastity Pratt Dawsey 16280 at http://michiganradio.org The long road ahead for Detroit education reform Lessenberry talks minimum wage, issue ads and Detroit Public Schools http://michiganradio.org/post/lessenberry-talks-minimum-wage-issue-ads-and-detroit-public-schools <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">This </span><em style="line-height: 1.5;">Week in Michigan Politics </em><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Christina Shockley and Jack </span>Lessenberry<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> discuss Mark </span>Schauer’s<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> proposal to </span><a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/schauer-raising-minimum-wage-would-be-top-priority-if-elected-governor" style="line-height: 1.5;">raise the minimum wage</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">, the political </span><a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/disclosing-names-issue-ad-donors-wedge-within-mi-gop" style="line-height: 1.5;">drama over issue ads</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">, and the state of </span><a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-public-schools-leave-federal-oversight-gain-incremental-independence" style="line-height: 1.5;">Detroit Public Schools</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">.</span></p><p> Wed, 20 Nov 2013 17:07:26 +0000 Jack Lessenberry, Christina Shockley & Emily Fox 15357 at http://michiganradio.org Lessenberry talks minimum wage, issue ads and Detroit Public Schools Michigan's public schools need leaders with vision and guts http://michiganradio.org/post/michigans-public-schools-need-leaders-vision-and-guts <p></p><p>There was a little bit of good news about Detroit’s public schools this week, perhaps the first good news in a long time. The Michigan Department of Education is formally taking the school district off so-called “high-risk” list. This means, essentially, that the state will no longer have to approve virtually everything the system does. It also means the system won’t have to put purchases over $25,000 out for bid.</p><p>But I think too much is being made of this. Yes, it is a good thing. We should think of this, however, more as if Detroit Public Schools were a patient in the hospital. Their condition has just been upgraded, but only from extremely critical to critical.</p><p> Wed, 20 Nov 2013 13:29:26 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 15358 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan's public schools need leaders with vision and guts Detroit Public Schools leave federal oversight, gain 'incremental independence' http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-public-schools-leave-federal-oversight-gain-incremental-independence <p>After five years, the Detroit Public Schools has<a href="http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20131118/SCHOOLS/311180070/Detroit-schools-out-high-risk-status-after-5-years?odyssey=mod|newswell|text|FRONTPAGE|p"> been removed from “high-risk status.”</a></p><p>The Michigan Department of Education gave Detroit federal high-risk status in 2008, after a federal audit revealed some serious financial discrepancies amounting to about $53 million.</p><p>But the state says the district has put enough safeguards in place now to relax its monitoring.</p> Tue, 19 Nov 2013 03:58:34 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 15336 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit Public Schools leave federal oversight, gain 'incremental independence' Detroit schools issue 'child safety ID cards' to some students http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-schools-issue-child-safety-id-cards-some-students <p>The Detroit Public Schools will start issuing “child safety ID cards” in some elementary schools.</p><p>The ID card will contain a child’s picture, fingerprint, and other identifying information. Participation is voluntary.</p><p>District officials say the cards could help find and identify missing children more quickly.</p><p>The district will give one card to parents, and keep the information on file. They say the district will only share the card’s information with law enforcement in the event of an emergency.</p> Wed, 13 Nov 2013 04:55:56 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 15256 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit schools issue 'child safety ID cards' to some students Your plans for next week? Listen to our series on education in Detroit http://michiganradio.org/post/your-plans-next-week-listen-our-series-education-detroit <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Next week, Sarah Alvarez from our </span><a href="http://stateofopportunity.michiganradio.org/" style="line-height: 1.5;"><em style="line-height: 1.5;">State of Opportunity</em></a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> team will explore the long shadow of a </span>busing<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> and integration case 40 years ago, and the way the outcome fundamentally altered the notion of a neighborhood school for students in Detroit and many communities throughout the metro area.</span></p><p></p><p><a href="http://stateofopportunity.michiganradio.org/post/great-detroit-draft-70" style="line-height: 1.5;">Check out this post by Kimberly Springer</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> that shows how some Detroit parents were notified that their kids were going to be bused to another school.</span></p><p>The series “Abandoning the neighborhood school” will focus on these topics:</p><p> Fri, 08 Nov 2013 16:51:09 +0000 Mark Brush 15192 at http://michiganradio.org Your plans for next week? Listen to our series on education in Detroit Detroit Public Schools enrollment up 14% in high schools http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-public-schools-enrollment-14-high-schools <p>Detroit Public Schools is reporting a 14 percent increase in enrollment for students in grades 9-12. Overall enrollment is still down by two percent, but that's a smaller decrease than previous years.</p><p>According to numbers collected by the district on count day, nine of DPS's 19&nbsp; high schools saw an increase in students.</p><p>DPS launched an enrollment campaign over the summer in an effort to meet projections included in the district's budget. Despite enrollment increases in some high schools, DPS still didn't meet those goals.</p><p></p> Mon, 04 Nov 2013 12:34:58 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 15093 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit Public Schools enrollment up 14% in high schools On count day, all eyes on Detroit Public Schools http://michiganradio.org/post/count-day-all-eyes-detroit-public-schools <p>Tomorrow is count day for Michigan&#39;s public schools.</p><p>The more students a school has in attendance on count day, the more money they get from the state.</p><p>It&#39;s a make or break day for Detroit Public Schools.</p><p><strong>After months of sales pitches, finding out how many students enrolled</strong></p><p>The district has spent months trying to recruit kids away from charter schools and private academies.</p> Tue, 01 Oct 2013 16:30:07 +0000 Kate Wells 14661 at http://michiganradio.org On count day, all eyes on Detroit Public Schools New attendance policy in Detroit Public Schools http://michiganradio.org/post/new-attendance-policy-detroit-public-schools <p>The Detroit Public Schools is tightening up its district-wide attendance policy this school year.</p><p>The policy is centered around what the district calls a “3-6-9 approach</p><p>Superintendent of academics Karen Ridgeway says the idea is pretty simple.</p><p>“There’s a reason for absences. Our whole initiative around 3-6-9 is to find out what that reason is, and to deal with that reason.”</p><p>Ridgeway says interventions begin when a child has a third unexcused absence from school.</p> Sat, 07 Sep 2013 18:48:56 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 14324 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit steps up efforts to lift school attendance http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-steps-efforts-lift-school-attendance <p style="margin-top: 9px; margin-bottom: 9px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; color: rgb(68, 78, 92); font-family: Georgia, serif; line-height: normal;">DETROIT (AP) — Detroit schools are stepping up efforts to improve attendance, including working with prosecutors on cases involving students with many unexcused absences.</p><p style="margin-top: 9px; margin-bottom: 9px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; color: rgb(68, 78, 92); font-family: Georgia, serif; line-height: normal;">The Detroit Public Schools district announced the policy Friday.</p><p style="margin-top: 9px; margin-bottom: 9px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; color: rgb(68, 78, 92); font-family: Georgia, serif; line-height: normal;">The district says that three times of arriving more than 15 minutes after the start of class will equal one unexcused absence. After three unexcused absences, a phone call will be made to the student's home and an attendance agent will be notified.</p><p style="margin-top: 9px; margin-bottom: 9px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; color: rgb(68, 78, 92); font-family: Georgia, serif; line-height: normal;">With the sixth unexcused absence, the student will be referred to an attendance agent and intervention may include home visits by the state Department of Human Services. More than nine per school year will bring a truancy referral to Wayne County prosecutors.</p><p style="margin-top: 9px; margin-bottom: 9px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; color: rgb(68, 78, 92); font-family: Georgia, serif; line-height: normal;">In Michigan, parents can face fines or jail time if children don't go to school.</p><p> Fri, 06 Sep 2013 15:17:53 +0000 The Associated Press 14308 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit steps up efforts to lift school attendance The week in review: Detroit Public Schools, Washtenaw County ID cards, Detroit mayoral race http://michiganradio.org/post/week-review-detroit-public-schools-washtenaw-county-id-cards-detroit-mayoral-race <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;</span>This week, Rina Miller and Jack Lessenberry discuss the <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/times-running-out-get-5000-new-kids-dps">Detroit Public Schools student quota</a>, Washtenaw County’s <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/new-program-washtenaw-county-could-grant-ids-undocumented-immigrants">identification card plan</a> that includes undocumented immigrants, and the <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/duggan-vs-napoleon-heats-each-promises-champion-detroit-neighborhoods">continuing campaigns </a>of Detroit mayoral candidates Benny Napoleon and Mike Duggan.</p><p><strong>Detroit Public Schools trying to meet enrollment goal</strong></p><p>The Detroit Public School district is depending on enrolling 5,000 more students for the 2013-2014 school year.&nbsp; If the district doesn’t meet its goal, they will lose millions of dollars in funding from the per-pupil-allowance from the state.&nbsp; Jack Lessenberry says that Detroit used to enroll almost 200,000 students thirteen years ago.&nbsp; They now only enroll 46,000.&nbsp; Lessenberry says “they’ve been going door-to-door trying various gimmicks, of course those are sort of dubious too, to get kids to come back.&nbsp; But it’s all about how many bodies they have in seats on Count Day.”</p><p> Sat, 31 Aug 2013 13:00:00 +0000 Rina Miller & Jack Lessenberry 14210 at http://michiganradio.org The week in review: Detroit Public Schools, Washtenaw County ID cards, Detroit mayoral race Time's running out to get 5,000 new kids to DPS http://michiganradio.org/post/times-running-out-get-5000-new-kids-dps <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The clock’s running out for the Detroit Public School district.</span></p><p>School starts Tuesday, and DPS officials went into the summer with the hefty goal of recruiting 5,000 new students.</p><p>That's an awful lot of new kids, e<span style="line-height: 1.5;">specially given that demographers predict just the opposite. They think </span>DPS<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> will lose students this year, like they have in the past.</span></p> Fri, 30 Aug 2013 12:46:13 +0000 Kate Wells 14194 at http://michiganradio.org Time's running out to get 5,000 new kids to DPS