AUDIO: Father of Michigan’s Emergency Manager law Al Pscholka convinced Rick Snyder is beloved in Detroit
Facing massive public outcry Detroit Schools Emergency Manager backs down from draconian cuts & slashing teacher wages
This post has been edited to clarify that the fine arts program at Detroit’s Renaissance High School is being saved.
Just a week after Detroit Public Schools Emergency Manager Jack Martin, announced draconian cuts to schools, higher class sizes, a second round of pay cuts for teachers, and the closing of 24 schools, he has changed his mind:
The district is battling a $127 million deficit, and the Michigan Department of Education approved its revised deficit elimination plan last week.…
Back in 2012, Pontiac Emergency Manager Louis Schimmel signed an agreement with Oakland County to manage monies from a substantial HUD grant. That turned out to be a nearly disasterous decision that would have resulted in a loss of upwards of $800,000 per year for Pontiac. Thankfully, Congressman Gary Peters stepped in a saved the day (and the money.)
At the time Congressman Peters had this to say about the situation:
Muskegon Heights education advocates submit a “Citizens’ RFP” to reclaim their schools from for-profit corporations
Last month, the for-profit charter corporation Mosaica announced that it was breaking its contract, signed under an Emergency Manager, to run the entire Muskegon Heights school district. Why? Because they couldn’t make a profit off of running a school system in an economically depressed community.
I know. You’re shocked.
As of this week, the Emergency Manager has still not had a single group come forward in their Request for Proposal (RFP) to run the district.…
Mosaica, the for-profit charter group that has been running Muskegon Heights schools has agreed to end their contract with the school district. Why? They couldn’t make a profit:
In order to pay teachers, vendors and staff for the rest of this school year, Weatherspoon is asking the state for a $1.4 million loan. That loan would go to the original Muskegon Heights Public School district, which would then funnel the cash to the new charter district it authorizes, Muskegon Heights Public School Academy.…
House Republicans move the goalposts on helping solve Detroit’s financial crisis by extorting labor unions
Oh, that’s rich
Michigan House Republicans are in a tight spot. With concessions made by every party swept up in Detroit’s municipal bankruptcy and a deal in place that mostly preserves retiree pensions and the Detroit Institute of Arts’ priceless art collection, the only hurdle remaining is the state ponying up $350 million. Given how much money they’ve essentially stolen from the city by withholding promised revenue sharing, it’s a small price to pay. The state cannot take over cities with Emergency Managers and then tell them they are on their own, much as they would love to do just that.…
Muskegon Heights schools still financially insolvent despite Emergency Manager’s outsourcing to for-profit charter
Wait, Emergency Managers were supposed to solve these problems weren’t they???
In what can only be seen as an embarrassing repudiation of the Republican idea that Emergency Managers are capable of “fixing” financially-struggling schools, the Muskegon Heights schools system has had to borrow nearly a quarter million dollars from the state in order to make payroll. This was after Emergency Manager Gregory Weatherspoon turned the school system entirely over to Mosaica Education, Inc., a for-profit charter school corporation — or as Mosaica likes to call itself, a for-profit education management organization — a year and half ago.
Lansing, we have a problem
The amped-up Emergency Manager laws passed by Michigan Republicans in 2011 and again in 2012 were specifically designed to give far more sweeping powers to the one unelected potentate who assumes control of the school district or municipality. The sweeping away of local elected officials and the snuffing out of local democracy was needed, said the proponents, because the elected leaders were simply incapable of doing the job properly themselves. In fact, the unspoken implication is the local communities deserved to lose their democracy since they voted for such inept leaders in the first place.
The bedrock presumption in all of this is that the state is completely capable of stepping in and handling the affairs of the local municipality or of the school district.…
The EAA isn’t the only experiment being conducted on Detroit children
In all of the sturm und drang over Republican Governor Rick Snyder’s Educational Achievement Authority experiment with Detroit children, it’s easy to forget about the other experiment they are part of: state control of the Detroit Public Schools by an Emergency Manager. I’ve written reams on this topic but not much recently given that the EAA has sucked so much oxygen out of the room.
However, I haven’t forgotten about this and neither has my friend Dr. Thomas Pedroni, Director of the Leonard Kaplan Education Center for Critical Urban Studies and Associate Professor for Curriculum Studies at Wayne State University.…
Republicans Denby and Rogers still trying to keep their white communities away from an Emergency Manager
A year and a half ago, I wrote a rather lengthy piece titled “Majority white communities avoid Emergency Financial managers with help from Republicans Denby and Rogers”. In it, I told the rather convoluted story of how now-State Representatives Cindy Denby and Bill Rogers had, during their time as local government officials, gotten their municipalities and county into severe debt when the housing market crashed. Bad decisions by them resulted in Handy Township where Denby was the Supervisor and Livingston County where Rogers was a Commissioner facing severe financial crises over special assessment districts that were created, paid for, and which then fell apart as developers abandoned the projects.…
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