Catholic Conference Statement in Support of Senate Passage of Education Reform Legislation
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Lansing) – Michigan Catholic Conference Vice President for Public Policy and Advocacy Tom Hickson offered the following comments after the State Senate passed education reform legislation earlier today:
“The purpose of these education reform bills is to move Michigan toward a more robust public school system and to streamline existing policies that benefit nonpublic students and families. Parents are the primary educators of their children and as such should have as many educational options available for their children. Michigan Catholic Conference is appreciative of those members who supported the legislation that passed the State Senate today. We look forward to these and the remainder of the bills in the package moving through the legislative process, hopefully with bipartisan support.”
This morning the State Senate passed the following legislation:
Senate Bills 622-23 and 709-10: Dual Enrollment: These bills streamline the state's dual enrollment policy, where high school students are allowed to enroll in a certain number of college level courses each year. The bills also eliminate the unnecessary burden placed on non-public school students to first enroll in a public school course before being allowed to enroll in their college level course of choice, and stipulates that the Department of Treasury will send payment directly to the college for that student's course.
Senate Bill 619: Cyber schools. The legislation removes the cap on the number of cyber schools that are allowed in the state.
Senate Bill 621: Shared Time: The bill expands the state's 32-year shared time policy out to contiguous Intermediate School Districts, thereby allowing nonpublic students more options for non-core courses that are not offered at their school. This bill is a win-win for both public and non-public schools. The non-public students have more course options, and the public schools are able to capture foundation allowance dollars.
Michigan Catholic Conference is the official public policy voice of the Catholic Church in this state.