Michigan Lawmakers Look To Not Hold Schools Accountable For Snow Days
For those of us who watched, heard or read about Governor Whitmer’s State of the State address we heard how our K – 12 students are underperforming here in the state of Michigan.
If fact Governor Whitmer said the following during her speech:
Since 2014, among states measured every year, Michigan has experienced the worst decline in childhood literacy.
If that is true, and according to the data it is when compared to other states, then why would the Michigan Senate Minority Leader Jim Ananich, a Democrat from Flint seek to hold these same schools not accountable for their numerous days off due to snow and weather.
That is exactly what he is doing, Mlive is reporting the Senate Minority Leader Jim Ananich, a Democrat from Flint is working on legislation that would not count any snow days that occurred during a state of emergency against a school district’s snow day allotment.
Senator Ananich was quoted in the article saying:
To me, it should always be about what’s in the best interest of those children…If that means being more flexible, then that’s what we should do.
Are you saying Senator Ananich that the best interest of the students would be less class time? It certainly sounds like you are. Or are you more concerned about what is in the best interest of the teachers or their Unions and that is spending less time in the classroom. I am not saying this about teachers but logically it sounds like Senator Ananich is.
The State of Michigan allows schools to be closed for bad weather up to 6 days and not have to make those days up at the end of the year. After 6 days they must make those days up according to Michigan law. Most schools have cancelled school due to weather at least 10 days this school year.
According to the Mlive article:
According to state data, 117 school districts canceled class more than nine times during the 2016-17 school year. That’s compared to 26 school districts in the 2015-16 school year and 33 school districts in 2014-15.
I do not remember anyone calling for legislation to let those schools off the hook during those years. What is so special with this school year?
Whether the schools closed due to a weather state of emergency or not is not the question. If our children in K – 12 are performing so badly in their assessment tests why shouldn’t the first priority be to give these students the most class and teacher face time we can to educate them and improve their test scores.
By the way this appears to be a bipartisan push. In Michigan’s House of Representatives, state Representative Ben Frederick, R-Owosso, is also apparently working on similar legislation which would hold school districts harmless for closures that occur during a declared state of emergency.
Rep. Frederick was quoted in the article stating:
When the weather is so bad emergency officials are telling people to stay off the roads in the interest of public safety, it makes good sense to forgive those days
It is not about forgiving these days Rep. Frederick it is about educating our children and do you and Senator Aninach believe that having these children spend less time in the classroom will actually help them in their pursuit of an education?
I do not know and I wonder what is truly behind these politicians actions and if it comes to a vote anyone who would vote for this.
The answer to our children not doing well enough in basic reading, writing, science and math is not less classroom time, is it?