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Michigan Education Achievement Authority statement by W.K. Kellogg Foundation

Contact: Dana Linnane, 269.969.2079, dana.linnane@wkkf.org

At the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) we are committed to creating conditions that prepare children for long-term success and independence. Paramount to this effort in our home state of Michigan is making sure all kids are supported by a quality education system that is accountable and held to consistent, high standards across the state.

WKKF supports a myriad of innovative education and learning practices – like the Educational Achievement Authority (EAA) – and partnerships between schools, families, communities, government and business that align and strengthen conditions that ensure healthy, whole child development.

We believe in the EAA’s potential to transform Detroit’s lowest performing schools into high-quality places of learning where all students succeed. We also see this innovative approach serving as a time limited recovery district model for reinventing public education across the state. However, it is critical that any plan to expand EAA statewide includes a rigorous and transparent system of accountability that puts Michigan’s children first. We believe that all educational entities that receive public dollars should have the highest and most rigorous evaluation of student success.

When we don’t hold schools accountable to high standards, we are not providing Michigan’s kids with the quality schools and education they need to succeed.

The Kellogg Foundation partners with several organizations in Michigan to ensure that all children have access to quality education. Education Trust-Midwest uses data to improve urban education and close the achievement and opportunity gaps for all kids in Michigan. We know from their good work and research that the state must craft rigorous standards for local districts and charters that seek to use their own local model. The state must also provide feedback and oversight to ensure evaluation of teachers, students and of the school is done reliably, fairly and constructively, particularly in the first few years of implementation. 
Additionally, Excellent Schools Detroit, Detroit Parent Network, Michigan Future’s High School Accelerator and the United Way for Southeastern Michigan’s Early Learning Communities are all examples of innovative strategies on the ground in Detroit that are transforming educational conditions to make sure that every child is in a quality school.

Children should have equal access to opportunity, especially educational opportunities. To make this vision a reality here in Michigan, it will take all of us – parents, teachers, elected officials, businesses and community leaders – working together to assure Michigan kids’ healthy development and education.

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