LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — Governor Gretchen Whitmer proposed a 5% spending increase for public K-12 schools on Wednesday.
Some leaders said that she has the right idea when it comes to moving our educational system in the right direction, while others say they do not fully support the proposal.
“We’re excited about some of the investments she’s proposing in public education across the state,” Rob McCann, the Executive Director for the K-12 Alliance of Michigan said.
McCann is one of many leaders throughout the state on board with the governor’s plan.
The investment of millions of dollars would help in areas including reading and tutoring programs, free breakfast and lunch for students, support of students with disabilities, health and safety issues in schools, teacher mentorship, and transportation.
McCann added that where the governor plans to allocate funds far outweighs the dollar amount.
“Tutoring and reading coaching and special education help. All of those things are additional needs that schools have and traditionally have not been funded well in the past. We’re excited to see that be a priority in the budget this year,” continued McCann.
Don Wotruba heads the Michigan Association of School Boards, and he said that it brings him joy knowing that this proposal will help keep students’ bellies full.
“She extended free and reduced breakfast and lunch to all kids in Michigan,” Wotruba said. “That’s been a legislative priority by our organization. By extending that to everybody it will help kids from a learning perspective, it will help kids be prepared for the beginning of their day.”
But not all education groups are behind this budget proposal like the Michigan Association of Charter Schools and the Michigan Education Justice Coalition.
According to MAPSA, the budget contains a 20% decrease in funding for students who attend fully online charter public schools.
Both groups claimed the budget proposal is not fair and will hurt some of the most vulnerable children in the state.