DashBoard, Aug. 3, 2016

On Thursday evening prior to the official start of MASB’s Annual Leadership Conference, the hallway outside of the location's largest ballroom is buzzing with activity as school board members from almost every district around the state check in. They are there to represent their district at the Delegate Assembly, which establishes policy and rules for the Association through resolutions and bylaw amendments. These are used to provide direction to MASB, its officers and committees throughout the year.

How do you keep your students safe?

Are you effectively communicating with your fellow board members, district staff and community?

Can your district overcome the challenges of poverty to serve your students?

Simply looking for a little inspiration?

This year's featured General Session Speakers will answer these questions and more at the Annual Leadership Conference, Nov. 10 – 13, at the Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center.

Since the release of the long-anticipated Michigan Education Finance Study at the end of June there have been plenty of questions about what it means and how we can utilize the findings to achieve adequate funding for all Michigan public schools.

To that end, MASB is offering an exclusive, free webinar on Wednesday, Aug. 10 from 11 a.m. – noon. Join Executive Director Don Wotruba and a special guest for an overview of the study and a discussion of what it could mean for your district. Questions are welcome and will be addressed during the webinar.

Register through this online form in order to receive a link to the webinar the morning of Aug. 10. If you have any questions, please contact the MASB Government Relations Team at [email protected] or 517.327.5906.

In June, Lindemann Elementary in Allen Park Public Schools was the first school in Michigan to participate in the Art for the Sky program. Students at Lindemann became a living piece of art, visible only from the sky, with the help of artist Daniel Dancer.

Since the beginning of last school year, the Legislature passed a number of bills that have now become law and will affect you during the upcoming school year. In addition to issues we’ve covered previously regarding the School Aid Budget, the following is a brief summary to make you aware of changes in law that could affect you.

DashBoard, Aug. 31, 2016

Michigan law requires that local and intermediate school district boards of education ensure that a performance evaluation system is in place for school administrators and teachers—this includes the superintendent. According to the law, a tool must be selected by the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year, which for most school districts is right now.

Earlier this year, Gov. Rick Snyder signed into law an education budget that included a $2.5 million appropriation to reimburse private schools for complying with certain state mandates. MASB and other education groups urged the Governor to veto the funding bill, because it violates Article 8, Section 2 of the Michigan Constitution, which prohibits the appropriation of public funds to directly or indirectly aid or maintain a private school. Instead of vetoing the bill, the Governor requested an advisory opinion from the Michigan Supreme Court on whether the $2.5 million appropriation violates the Michigan Constitution.

Recently, MASB, MASA and Middle Cities Education Association held a media roundtable to address some of the latest actions of the School Reform/Redesign Office. The event was well-attended and included coverage throughout the state and region.

One can best influence the actions of millennials by being relevant and relatable. Drawing comparisons to boomers often evokes negativity and condescension toward youth—a tendency that repeats itself with every generation. In any relationship, one must develop empathy. That begins by recognizing the events that shape millennial values.

Submitted by Ruby K. Payne, Ph.D., Founder, aha! Process

In spite of the big push for high achievement in recent years and the rigid guidelines that came from the federal government, test scores in U.S. public schools have not significantly improved over time. Yet districts and boards have been chastised for the lack of progress.

VIP Focus articles are company-sponsored advertisements and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of MASB. It’s intended to provide Very Important Partners with a space to share information of value to you and your district.

The filing deadline for this year’s elections has come and gone and many districts do not have enough candidates running to fill each vacant position. If your district finds itself in that position you will likely need to start recruiting individuals who may be interested in being appointed.

DashBoard, Aug. 17, 2016

Last month, the Michigan Department of Education filed draft rule changes for the Administrator Certification Code. The rules are not final and could change with input from the field or if legislators have concerns about their current form.

As you’ve likely seen in the media or experienced in your district, the State School Reform/Redesign Office has been meeting with the districts that currently have schools in the bottom 5%. It is also known that the SRO will be releasing a new list in September, which could include new schools.

Submitted by Matt Frost, Business Development Director of Communications, Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.

Employee engagement is intrinsically linked to organizational effectiveness, productivity and profitability, and organizations are looking for ways to improve it.

VIP Focus articles are company-sponsored advertisements and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of MASB. It’s intended to provide Very Important Partners with a space to share information of value to you and your district.