Governor Commissions Oxford Foundation to Rewrite School Aid Act
On Tuesday of last week, representatives from a host of education associations and other groups, such as the Mackinac Center, gathered to learn about Governor Snyder’s most recent education reform effort, a complete rewrite of the School Aid Act. Governor Snyder has commissioned the Oxford Foundation to draft a rewrite of Michigan’s school funding statute with an eye toward further implementing his “Any Time, Any Place, Any Where, Any Pace” vision for education in the state.
The project will be lead by Oxford Foundation treasurer and former Engler administration official Richard McClellan. Specific elements of the project will likely include moving to proficiency-based funding rather than one focused on seat-time. Additionally, the presenters at Tuesday’s meeting repeatedly spoke about wanting a per-pupil system that is “student centered,” which they defined as one that allows students greater access to early college attendance, online learning, and inter-district choice. Finally, the presenters at the meeting said that the effort would include some cleanup of the act including eliminating obsolete provisions and requirements and moving policy directives out of the funding act and into the School Code.
The redrafting effort is on a fast track, much like the rest of Governor Snyder’s reform efforts so far, and is slated to be complete in time for the Governor to roll out the changes as part of his FY 2013-14 budget recommendation in February 2013.
As with any undertaking of this size, this project has the potential to present some significant challenges and problems for principals, as well as some opportunities for significant improvements to school policy. MASSP is actively engaging in this process with an eye toward mitigating potential pitfalls and maximizing opportunities for improvement.