Sen. Bumstead, MEA Prez weigh in
The state Legislature on Thursday approved record public school funding for the 2020 fiscal year.
“This afternoon’s vote was a record investment in Michigan students and teachers,” said Sen. Jon Bumstead, R-Newaygo. “We were able to agree on a responsible plan that boosts funding for public education without raising taxes. My colleagues and I remain committed to our state’s educators as well as the taxpayers.”
School Aid will see a record investment of $15.3 billion — an increase of $424 million over last year and the largest investment in the state’s history. Under the measure approved Thursday afternoon, schools will see a foundation allowance increase of between $120 and $240 per pupil, an increase from the governor’s proposed $120-$180 formula.
Other notable items include $522 million invested to help at-risk students, a $21.5 million increase in career and technical education funding, and a $60 million increase for special education. The measure also includes funding to improve school safety.
“I am happy we were able to negotiate a final product that puts us one step closer to getting a budget in place,” Bumstead said. “I hope the governor signs this legislation quickly so school districts across the state can finally get their finances together.”
The 2020 K-12 budget will now go before Gov. Gretchen Whitmer for consideration.
Michigan Education Association President Paula Harbert statement on passage of education budget:
"While this budget isn’t everything we had hoped for, it is a good first step to ending the decades-long underfunding of public education.
“But it is only a step. It addresses only a fraction of the $2,000 gap in per-pupil funding schools face. It doesn’t eliminate the effects of 25 years of last-in-the-nation education funding increases. For us to truly invest in the success of every student, lawmakers need to make a long-term commitment to addressing these issues.
“First, we must provide equitable funding that accounts for the differing needs of students and the differing resources needed to meet those needs. We owe it to these students – at-risk, special education, English language learners, career/technical, to name a few – to recognize that ‘equal’ and ‘equitable’ are not the same.
“If we focus only on how much we spend, and not on how we spend it, we risk leaving countless students behind because their needs are more costly.
“But we also must recognize that there is not enough revenue for our state government to fully fund our state’s priorities, including education and infrastructure. Whatever revenue options you prefer, they won’t be passed into law to fund our schools and fix our roads unless we create the political will with our leaders in Lansing to make it happen.
“I’m proud of Michigan’s educators for raising their voices to demand change in how we fund our schools – and we will continue to help others raise their voices in favor of fully solving how Michigan shortchanges its students.”
By Ken DeLaat
Cokie Roberts, who passed away today at the much too young age of 75 was a personal hero.
She, far more than anyone I see on the media landscape these days, was a true journalist. An unassuming and seemingly fearless commentator who teemed with integrity and could be trusted to deliver accurate accounts of the goings on at one of the most screamingly elusive and evasive institutions in our land, Congress.
A few years back she spoke at the January Series, the Calvin College annual winter gift to us all that is broadcast live at the Dogwood Center. One glimpse at the schedule that year and I knew that whatever else was going on in my life that day could wait because my behind was going to be in a good seat to hear her presentation.
And she was, most assuredly, not disappointing.
Roberts was candid, funny, and unafraid to be opinionated yet refraining from being unnecessarily unkind. She called out politicians and expressed her frustration at seeing how they were focused on sustained incumbency rather than any real problem solving.
And her wealth of historical knowledge provided an odd sense of relief when she said that today’s political divisiveness is perhaps not the worst our country has faced, referencing the 1850’s and the caning of a senator in the halls of Congress by a member of the house incensed at being referred to in a speech by the canee as 'an imbecile who held slavery as his harlot' among other things.
She reminded us, however, that the era she spoke of ended in Civil War.
Roberts spoke of her deeply rooted Catholic faith and had 2 years prior written a book with her husband about their 40+ year marriage and how they incorporated her Catholicism and his Judaism into an interfaith melding of both in celebration and worship.
I left impressed even more by the woman I had long admired.
During elections Roberts occasionally made appearances on one of the network news stations among the cadre of regular correspondents who always seem to clamor for the clever word or searing speculative thought. Her responses were always like a breath of fresh air arriving in a much too stuffy room. Marked by clarity, insight and a boatload of inside info she radiated competence and the others paled in comparison through no doing of her own other than being who she was.
A journalist...a consummate correspondent.
She was a sheer delight to listen to over the years and will be greatly missed.
Thank you Ms. Roberts.
And well done, Ma’am. Well done indeed.
As a resident who is deeply engaged with our community here in Newaygo County, I wanted to raise awareness about an opportunity for women to take charge of our health.
On Friday, Sept. 6, Spectrum Health will be bringing one of its mobile mammography vehicles to Hesperia. This service on wheels will offer 3-D mammograms, capable of taking detailed, precise images that can more accurately identify abnormalities. A 3-D mammogram is quick, minimizes discomfort and pain during screening, and provides accurate, timely results, all done in privacy and comfort.
I’m pleased that Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial is helping bring quality healthcare to our community. As a school board member and an advocate for economic opportunity in our community, I view events like this as one way we can access healthcare. Spectrum Health is helping make it easier for women to get screened. I join countless people around the nation in reminding women that early screening can save lives.
Cancer in all its forms touches so many lives. It affects the individual, their families and often times entire communities. Hesperia and Newaygo County are no different. We know so many people who have faced this disease with courage. We know those who took proactive steps to address cancer early.
Unfortunately, we also know those who caught the disease too late.
Breast cancer is curable. When found early, breast cancer can be treated and managed. The challenge is detecting it early, and that’s where 3-D mammograms can help.
By taking 1-millimeter-thin images at a time, 3-D mammograms can look through dense breast tissue. The result is a three-dimensional image that a tech or doctor can look at from all angles, as opposed to two-dimensional images like a simple photograph.
According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer will affect one in eight women during their lifetimes. The ACS recommends that every woman 40 years or older get a mammogram once a year.
On Friday, we can take that opportunity by getting screened when the mobile mammogram comes to Hesperia. It’s also free to those who qualify.
The mobile mammogram will be at the Family Dollar, 9585 E Sunset Blvd, Hesperia, MI 49421.
Hope to see you women on Friday!
BEFORE YOU GO:
Because the mobile unit can take a limited number of patients, women are asked to make an appointment to reserve a spot.
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