House Committee Votes to Lift Cap on Charter Schools

The bill could lead to more of the institutions serving Michigan students. What do you think?

The state House Education Committee, which , voted Wednesday to end the cap on the expansion of charter schools in Michigan.

Senate Bill 618 now goes to the full House.

"Every Michigan student deserves to receive a quality education of their own parents' choosing," McMillin said in a news release. "This legislation empowers parents to have the options needed to keep their children out of failing schools."

Superintendent Michael Simeck disagreed with that take on the legislation in in October after the Senate approved the bill.

"For-profit charters do worse academically than traditional public schools, spend less money on instruction, and sort and select students," he wrote. "The Senate-approved bill is a one-size-fits-all 'cure' for urban schools’ ills that will drain resources from high-performing community schools across our state."

According to the Michigan Association of Public School Academies, there are 232 charter schools in Michigan and more than two-thirds of the schools have waiting lists.

There are no charter schools in Berkley or Huntington Woods.

The Michigan Education Association has openly opposed the bill, calling it "another attempt to destroy public education and divert public taxpayer dollars to private, for-profit companies."

In a news post, the MEA urged its members to contact legislators and voice their opposition to the bill.

McMillin, however, said the bill would increase opportunities for a quality education in the state.

"Today we gave the tens of thousands of students on charter school waiting lists hope for a better future," he said.

Lianne Mathie December 01, 2011 at 12:09 AM
I did not agree with Michael Simeck on the last bond issue but I agree 100% when it comes to for profit charter schools. No good can come from handing over the business of education to corporations. They are beholden to shareholders, not students or parents. I know they are needed in some community's but they should be over seen by the public.Here is what can happen at the grade school level.Please look at this program before deciding. http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/collegeinc/
Libby Turpin December 01, 2011 at 02:14 AM
To add to Simeck's thoughts here, majority of charter schools only offer classes up to 8th grade, causing students to change schools, which causes many social issues for students. Furthermore, they are not preparing students for the influx of the state's standardize testing regime. Bad idea for our state. It is a band aid to try to fix our failing inner city schools. Shouldn't we try to fix the problem instead of creating more?
Harmen Guenther December 01, 2011 at 06:24 AM
Bill 618 not only allows for more charter schools but also decimates the funding for public schools. I pray that there are some legislaters that are for public education instead of these idiots trying to put an end to it


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