Tag Archives | Education

FOIA’ed letter shows Brighton tea party school still seeks charter so they can “train up American Citizen Patriots”

With Brighton Area Schools deciding not to consider chartering a new charter school in their district, the group trying to open a tea party-led school in Brighton has had to turn their attention to other places. Pasquale Battaglia, the brainchild behind the project and self-described “landlord” sent a letter to Dr. Craig Douglas, the Director of the School/University Partnership Office at Saginaw Valley State University a couple of months ago, seeking a meeting. This letter, obtained through a FOIA request by Brighton resident Judy Daubenmier, shows that Battaglia is both steeped in tea party rhetoric and ideology and tragically bad at grammar and spelling.…

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Michigan Republican calls subsidized child care “gubmint child’s care centers” & “government re-engineering centers”

Lapeer-area State Representative Todd Courser is a member of the State House Education Committee which oversees legislation pertaining to schools in our state. It’s an interesting assignment for him since he homeschools his own kids and regularly disparages public education.

On his Facebook page today, as part of an anti-Planned Parenthood rant, Courser refers to child care providers as – I’m not kidding here – “gubmint child’s care centers” & “government re-engineering centers”:

Lots of reasons to vote against this coming budget, it cuts road funding (you heard me right), it of course increases Medicaid funding, more money for gubmint child’s [sic] care centers (government re-engineering centers), increases child dental, more for education and more expanded government…

Presumably what he is talking about here are components of Gov.…

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Michigan Republicans: Teachers don’t need to be certified & education is to teach children to read the Scriptures

Ultra far right wing conservatives Todd Courser and Gary Glenn took steps this week that show beyond a shadow of a doubt that their views on education have more to do with people in the 18th Century than they do with any modern views on education today. In a Facebook post this week that he has since deleted, Courser describes our state’s education system as being run by “top down soviet style central planners” and says that the schools should be a “ministry of the church” to ensure that students can “read the scriptures” and not to prepare them for careers as adults.…

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Michigan Republicans show how much they value education by increasing funding a whopping 1.6%

“Don’t tell me what you value, show me your budget and I will tell you what you value.” – Joe Biden

Michigan Republicans put forth their proposed education budget yesterday and, as you would expect, it shows just how little the value education in our state. After slashing education funding for years, they are back this year with a paltry 1.6% increase. Even Gov. Snyder’s budget almost hit 2%. And it’s not just the tiny increase that is the biggest slap in the face to those who value the education of our children and see it as an investment in our state’s future.…

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Michigan tea party Republican Todd Courser creates phony homeschooler outrage over education bills

Once again proving that reading comprehension isn’t a requirement for being a legislator…

Lapeer state legislator Todd Courser, a self-described “Constitutional, Conservative Republican”, is an ardent defender of “the freedom of parent’s choice in education for their children”. This is code language for homeschooling children, something Courser and his wife have done with their own kids. There are myriad reasons for parents to homeschool their kids and it’s a noble endeavor that requires an enormous commitment of time and resources to do it right.

Recently, Senate Bill 169 and Senate Bill 170 were introduced to allow high school graduates, including those who are homeschooled, to receive a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) endorsement on their diploma.…

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Mich Gov. Snyder balances budget on backs of students (again) and takes control of failing schools (again)

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder continued his assault on education this week with two remarkable moves that betray his claims to have education at the top of his priority list.

First, he signed legislation that fills a huge budget hole, created in part by ongoing multi-billion dollar tax cuts for businesses by diverting $167 million from the School Aid Fund. This comes on the heals of fake increases in per-pupil funding that are actually cuts.

But the most outrageous move was to remove control of the State School Reform and Redesign Office, which oversees the Education Achievement Authority, from the Department of Education and putting it under the oversight of the Department of Technology, Management and Budget.…

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UPDATED x2: Leader of Brighton group has concerned parent arrested at an “open house” for their proposed tea party charter school

NOTE: This story has been updated twice below and in HERE, HERE, and HERE.

Over the past few months, I have written about the efforts of a group formerly known as the American Christian Academies to form a tea party charter school in Brighton, Michigan that would use tax dollars to run as a public school. The name of the group was later changed to American Classical Academies and its leader Pasquale Battaglia has been leading the charge to get Brighton Public Schools to charter their conservative ideology-driven school.

One of the main opponents of this effort is Glenn Ikens, a Brighton parent who lives near the proposed Lindbom Classical Academy.…

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Michigan GOP moves to fill budget crater from corporate tax breaks by robbing a quarter billion dollars from schools

To hear Michigan Republicans tell the story, they are all about the importance of education in Michigan. Get them in front of a microphone, camera, or a reporter and they will tell you it’s one of their highest priorities. Their hypocrisy on this issue is in clear display this week as they passed to bills, H.B. 4110 and H.B. 4112, which take over a quarter billion dollars out of the state School Aid Fund.

I’m not kidding:

Much of the surplus in the current budget for Michigan schools could be used to pay down the state’s projected deficit after members of the Michigan House of Representatives passed a bill Wednesday.…
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UPDATED: Dow Foundation gives $1 million grant to anti-public schools corporatist front group to “fund education policy research”

The anti-union, anti-teacher corporatist group Mackinac Center for Public Policy has a long history of promoting the demise of teachers unions and public schools. They prefer a world where children are taught by non-unionized teachers in charter schools that profit from our tax dollars. Which is why it’s bizarre to the point of being Orwellian that they have granted $1 million by the Dow Foundation to “fund education policy research”. Chad Phillips at the Michigan Populist Blog has the story:

While it is great that the Dow Foundation is donating a million dollars for educational research, it is troubling that the Mackinac Center for Public Policy is the organization conducting the research.…
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Governor Snyder unveils fake “increase” in per-pupil school funding

I apologize for the lack of new posts this past week. My family is dealing with an ongoing medical crisis with my father and I have not had time to write. Regular posting will resume when the crisis is resolved.

Last week, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder unveiled his new budget. According to his spin on the budget, per-pupil funding will be increased by $75 per student. At the time, Democratic Representative Brandon Dillon noted that this so-called “increase” would be more than offset by cuts to schools in other areas:

While questioning State Budget Director John Roberts, Rep. Brandon Dillon, D-Grand Rapids, noted that the budget includes a decrease in the amount of performance-based funding available for districts.…
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