DashBoard, March 2, 2016

NSBA’s annual Advocacy Institute and Equity Symposium were canceled in January due to blizzard conditions that hit the Washington, D.C. area that weekend. The Advocacy Institute has been rescheduled for June 12 – 14, and the Equity Symposium will be held on June 11

Evaluating the performance of the superintendent is critical to the improvement efforts of the entire school district.

Thirty years of research on effective schools indicates leadership is second only to classroom instruction in influencing student outcomes.1 Given what’s at stake, it’s imperative for boards of education and superintendents to work together to establish an effective plan for performance evaluation.

DashBoard, March 9, 2016

The following members were recently elected to or ran unopposed for seats on the MASB Board of Directors.

When planning for your superintendent evaluation, don’t forget that the system has to take into account multiple measures of student growth and assessment data or confuse these measurements with student achievement data.

The National School Boards Association’s Technology Leadership Network recently announced its “20 to Watch” honorees for 2015-2016, including an assistant superintendent from Michigan. These distinctive education leaders from across the country are being recognized for their ability to inspire colleagues to explore and embrace innovative technology solutions that contribute to high-quality instruction and support more personalized learning experiences for students.

DashBoard, March 16, 2016

Expanding the use of sinking funds has been a MASB legislative priority for many years, and in early February we were very pleased to see House Bill 4388 unanimously pass out of the House Appropriations Committee. It is currently awaiting action on the House floor.

If your district is still on a spring cycle for evaluation of your superintendent, now is an excellent time to be thinking about setting performance goals for your superintendent for next year.

Swan Valley School District was recognized with an honorable mention for its Library Media SERVICE Center in the 22nd annual Magna Awards program sponsored by the National School Boards Association’s American School Board Journal. The awards, supported by Sodexo, recognize school districts and their leaders for taking bold and innovative steps to improve the lives of their students and communities.

DashBoard, March 23, 2016

Child poverty went up in 80 of 83 Michigan counties since 2006 and leads to struggles in every other area of a child’s life, the Kids Count in Michigan Data Book 2016 released March 21, 2016 by the Michigan League for Public Policy shows. The report outlines policy recommendations for legislators to help low-income kids and children of color and their families, a need that has been magnified by the recent crises with Flint’s water and Detroit Public Schools.

The Michigan Court of Appeals affirmed the Michigan Employment Relations Commission’s decision that the Port Huron Area School District did not breach its duty to bargain when it shifted from employing its own school psychologists to utilizing the St. Clair County Regional Services Association for those services without bargaining the matter with the Port Huron Education Association.

On Tuesday, the Senate passed its reform package for Detroit Public Schools. Senate Bills 710 and 819-822 all passed by votes of 21-16; SB 711 passed by a vote of 29-8. The Senate did not debate House Bill 5296, which includes the $48.7 million that DPS will need to stay open through the end of the school year. That money would come from the Tobacco Settlement Fund and not the School Aid Fund. The bill is expected to be voted on yet this week.

Submitted by Craig Kahler, Managing Director, Michigan Public Finance, Fifth Third Securities, Inc.

School districts across Michigan are struggling to manage facility, technology and transportation needs while balancing budgets and focusing on instruction. Limits imposed on sinking funds may leave one option for financing improvements—a voted bond issue.

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.

DashBoard, March 30, 2016

Last week, the Senate passed its reform package for Detroit Public Schools. Sen. Geoff Hansen (R-Hart) made many changes to the originally introduced proposal in Senate Bill 710. Following, we break down some of the details of the Senate-passed proposal.

There has been a significant amount of confusion regarding the State Board of Education Draft Statement and Guidance on Safe and Supportive Learning Environments for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning Students. Let’s clear some of that up:

Last week, the House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittees on the School Aid Budget passed their versions of the budget. The budgets are very different so work will continue and we don’t yet know what exactly to expect. Their goal remains to finalize the budget by the end of May. The following highlights some of the differences between the House version, the Senate version and the Governor’s budget.