Press Release

ROYAL OAK, Mich. (April 22, 2020) — As state education leaders continue to respond to the coronavirus pandemic, The Education-Trust Midwest is publishing a series of recommendations to meet the needs of underserved student groups, promote instructional equity and address long-standing inequities.

School closures exacerbate the existing inequities in our education system — presenting the most significant challenges to students and families who are underserved in normal circumstances, including students with disabilities, students experiencing homelessness and English learners.

In the 2018-19 school year, Michigan’s public schools educated almost 200,000 students with disabilities — representing more than 13 percent of students in the state, 96,500 students who needed to learn English, and nearly 35,000 homeless students.

“Every Michigan student a deserves a quality public education that meets their needs. Our recommendations provide an outline to help state and local school officials ensure that quality instruction and student wellbeing are addressed throughout the COVID-19 shutdown,” said Amber Arellano, executive director of The Education Trust-Midwest.

Today, recommendations were released for addressing educational equity for English learners. Recommendations for supporting  students with disabilities and students experiencing homelessness during school closures will be released later this week.

For more information about the Education Trust-Midwest’s recommendations for the state and school districts during extended school closures, visit


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The Education Trust Midwest is a nonpartisan research and advocacy organization dedicated to improving outcomes for all Michigan students, especially for African American, Latino, American Indian, and low-income students. The Education Trust Midwest believes in the power of intelligent education policy and practices informed by data, research, and the successes of other states to make Michigan a top ten education state for all students.