Report cites need to fix Michigan's school funding

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LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A report endorsed by the state Board of Education says Michigan needs to fix its school funding system and spend money more wisely to improve student outcomes.

The Detroit News reports ( ) the board voted 6-2 on Tuesday to approve recommendations that call for making education funding a budget priority.

The recommendations also call for investing in teachers and early childhood education; requiring a "certificate of need process" to open new charter schools; and developing a way for Michigan school districts to "effectively raise additional local revenues."

The report says Michigan ranks 22nd in the nation for per-pupil funding but is in the bottom half of states for math and English scores.

The report says the state's enrollment has fallen 11 percent since 2003, from 1.7 million to 1.5 million, and inflation-adjusted spending on education has dropped 16 percent since 2004. It says most new spending is going toward employee retirement costs.

According to the report, the state has made needed some reforms but hasn't backed them up with "the investment and capacity-building necessary to implement them effectively."



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Information from: The Detroit News,

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