Call for State Leaders to Protect Vulnerable Children from Budget Cuts

As the U.S. rightfully confronts longstanding inequality and racial injustice, Michiganders have a historic opportunity to address decades-long underinvestment in education and opportunity gaps disproportionately impacting students of color, students from low-income families, students with disabilities, English learners and students in rural communities. Last week, the Education Trust-Midwest issued that call to action in its 2020 State of Michigan Education Report, A Marshall Plan: Reimagining Michigan Public Education.

The report found that Michigan, having made no progress from 2003 to 2019, ranks 36th in improvement among all students in fourth grade reading, according to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), also known as the Nation’s Report Card. For fourth grade reading and eighth grade math, Michigan’s African American students perform among the bottom 10 states in the nation. In reading, Michigan’s Latino students improved about one third as much as Latino students nationwide in early literacy since 2003.

At the same time, Michigan has been among the worst states in the U.S. for its fairness in funding. Specifically, Michigan is one of the bottom five states nationally for the funding gap between high-poverty and low-poverty districts. And between 1995 and 2015, Michigan had the lowest total education revenue growth of all 50 states. Already, nearly 1,000 letters have been sent to Michigan policymakers urging them to join our Fair Funding Pledge.

Read a summary of the six recommendations for Michigan’s educational recovery here and the full report at

ICYMI: School Re-Opening and Protecting Vulnerable Students from Cuts on Detroit Today

Education Trust-Midwest executive director, Amber Arellano, and Elizabeth Moje, dean of the University of Michigan School of Education join Stephen Henderson on WDET‘s Detroit Today to discuss educational equity amid looming budget cuts and school shutdowns. Click here to listen.

Social to Share For Michigan to compete with other states, we need an educational recovery plan. We propose six key steps for state and school leaders to take in 2020.