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Downward spiral of public school funding in Battle Creek could end with $51 million grant

May 17, 2017

Michigan's school choice policy has opened the door for thousands of parents across the state to take their kids out of their home school district and go to schools in neighboring districts.

That shift of students from mainly poorer urban districts to better-off suburban schools has created big financial challenges for the urban districts.

Take Battle Creek Public Schools, where shrinking enrollment meant a $20 million cut in state funding.

A 2016 Bridge Magazine study found Battle Creek loses more than four out of ten students to schools outside of the district. The students who leave tend to be white, and more affluent than the typical student in the district.

But there's a big helping hand on the way.

The Kellogg Foundation has promised $51 million over the next five years to help the struggling Battle Creek Public Schools.

It's a groundbreaking example of philanthropy helping public education.

Stateside spoke with Kim Carter, the superintendent of Battle Creek Public Schools about the grant, and what it could mean for students in the Battle Creek public school system.

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