Speaker Tate Shares that More Funding for the Opportunity Index is a Priority for the House

Last week in an interview with MIRS News, Michigan Speaker of the House Joe Tate shared that one of his top priorities is putting together a strong budget, which includes increasing investments for students who are the most underserved through the Opportunity Index. The Opportunity Index, a new school funding formula approved by the legislature last year, provides additional funding to schools to address the needs of students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds. The formula calls for an additional 35 percent to 47 percent above the foundation allowance based on the amount of poverty in the school district. During the [...]

June 5, 2024|Advocacy|

Michigan Partnership for Equity and Opportunity Members Advocate for Fair Funding for Michigan’s Students with the Greatest Needs at Second Annual Advocacy Day

Ensuring that students who are underserved, including those who are multi-lingual learners, is a priority that hits home for many, including Adnoris “Bo” Torres who migrated from Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, to Battle Creek, Michigan at the age of nine. Those who struggle in areas such as language accessibility, many times do so because of a lack of school funding and resources to support students with additional needs.   While the state made historic progress last year thanks to the leadership of our legislative members –including through a new school funding mechanism that for the first time includes an index to account [...]

April 30, 2024|Advocacy|

Testimony before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on PreK-12

Good morning members of the Appropriations Subcommittee on PreK-12 and thank you Sen. Camilleri for the invitation to testify.   I am Jeff Cobb, Director of Government Affairs for The Education Trust-Midwest, a non-partisan, data-driven, policy non-profit organization. Joining me today are Jametta Lilly, Chief Executive Officer of the Detroit Parent Network, and Jose Orozco, a veteran public-school educator and community leader now Executive Director of VOCES in Battle Creek.   We are all members of the Michigan Partnership for Equity and Opportunity, a statewide coalition focused on advancing opportunity and improving learning outcomes for all of Michigan’s students, especially students who [...]

March 21, 2024|Advocacy|

Advocacy Alert — Michigan’s young readers need your support!

Advocates, Michigan has an early reading problem. Outcomes in early reading continue to lag other states, and too many students are being left behind. The good news is there is legislation pending on the Senate floor to help identify students with the characteristics of dyslexia and ensure they receive the resources they need to become great readers. This learning disability is said to impact as much as 10%-20% of the population. We need your voice to ensure this legislation passes the Senate.  Senate Bills 567 and 568 have the ability change the trajectory for young struggling readers by requiring schools [...]

March 7, 2024|Advocacy|

Celebrate Black History Month!

Black History Month is coming to a close, but that does not mean we should stop recognizing the contributions that African Americans have made and continue to make in U.S. history. EdTrust-Midwest is grateful for the strong partnership we have built with our Michigan Partnership for Equity and Opportunity (MPEO) coalition, as we continue efforts to identify ways to close gaps in opportunity and achievement that disproportionately impact students who are the most underserved, with a particular focus on Black and Latino/a students and students from low-income backgrounds. Monique Marks, president & CEO at Franklin Wright Settlements and MPEO member, [...]

February 20, 2024|Advocacy, News|

Celebrate Black History Month!

Annually, Black History Month is observed from Feb. 1 to Mar. 1 as a celebration honoring the contributions that African Americans have made and recognizing their central role in U.S. history. The tradition began in the Jim Crow era and was officially recognized in 1976 as part of the nation’s bicentennial celebrations. In partnership with EdTrust-Midwest, the Michigan Partnership for Equity and Opportunity (MPEO) works to close gaps in opportunity and achievement that disproportionately impact students who are the most underserved, with a particular focus on Black and Latino/a students and students from low-income backgrounds. Deidre Bounds, president at Ignite Social [...]

February 7, 2024|Advocacy, News|

Statewide Equity Coalition Lauds Equity-Centered School Funding Recommendations from the Growing Michigan Together Council

The Michigan Partnership for Equity and Opportunity – a diverse, bipartisan, statewide coalition of leaders centered on educational equity – today praised Gov. Whitmer’s Growing Michigan Together Council for including several key transformational school funding recommendations in its final report.  “State leaders made a historic commitment in June to Michigan’s students, especially those who are most underserved, when they codified in state law a new Opportunity Index – a mechanism that will drive much greater state investment in students who qualify for at-risk funding based on a school district’s concentration of poverty, regardless of region,” said Alice Thompson, one [...]

December 14, 2023|Advocacy, News|

It’s time for Michigan to invest in its most vulnerable children

From the rural reaches of northern Michigan to the urban centers of our largest cities and the surrounding suburban and exurban communities, every one of Michigan’s 1.4. million public school students deserve the opportunity to flourish in school and life. Yet, that’s tragically not the case, especially for students who are most underserved. The state’s recently released M-STEP results are just one of the many indicators that reinforce why we need to urgently transform our education system. Consider that the percentage of students scoring proficient on key subjects is still below pre-pandemic levels. For example, Michigan scores dropped in 2023 in [...]

October 10, 2023|Advocacy, News|

Hispanic Heritage Month Spotlight: Jose Luis Orozco, Jr., Voces

Editor's note: Annually, September 15 – October 15 serves as Hispanic Heritage Month, providing a time to pay tribute to the many contributions, cultures and histories of American Latinos who have influenced and enriched our nation. Throughout the month we are spotlighting members from the Michigan Partnership for Equity and Opportunity – a diverse statewide coalition of leaders and organizations ranging from civil rights, business, civic, parent, and other sectors – and the incredible work they do for students and education equity. Originally from San Perlita, Texas, a small border town on the Texas-Mexico border, Jose Luis Orozco, Jr. is a licensed professional counselor who advocates for the Latino [...]

October 10, 2023|Advocacy, News|

Opportunity for All: A Celebration of a Historic Win and Next Steps for Fair Funding for All

More than 60 education equity advocates – including local elected leaders, state officials, educators, civil rights, civic and business leaders, supporters and partners – joined together recently to celebrate a historic school funding win for Michigan’s students, especially the most underserved.  The event, which took place at Fellowship Chapel in Detroit, was a celebration of a systemic change to invest dramatically more in students from low-income backgrounds – and discuss next steps to create a truly fair school funding system based on what leading states and research say is needed to close opportunity gaps for students with the greatest [...]

October 4, 2023|Advocacy, News|
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