Gov. Rick Snyder signs bill package strengthening educational opportunities for Detroit's children, returning control to locally elected board

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

LANSING, Mich. – Detroit Public Schools will receive $617 million to provide a clean slate for education in the city under legislation signed today by Gov. Rick Snyder. The bills also eliminate emergency management by restoring local control to an elected school board and create a pathway for Detroit to attract and retain the best teachers for its children.

“This marks a new day for Detroit families, with DPS free from debt and strong accountability measures for all schools in the city that promises a brighter future for all of Detroit’s children,” Snyder said.

House Bills 5384, 5383 and 5387, sponsored by state Reps. Amanda Price and Daniela Garcia, and Senate Bills 711, 820 and 822, sponsored by state Rep. Geoff Hansen, transfer DPS operations to a new district and make related changes that ensure Detroit’s schoolchildren have the same opportunities for success as other children in the state. The measures are now Public Acts 192-197 of 2016.

Under the new legislation, a total of $617 million will help restructure the district, including $467 million to help pay off long-standing debt that has been costing the districts $1,100 per pupil annually. Another $150 million will be available to improve facilities and invest in student achievement.  

Control will be returned to a locally elected school board at the earliest possible time in January, following the November elections. This will eliminate the need for further emergency management.

Detroit’s existing Financial Review Commission, which has already seen success in the city, will monitor the district’s finances to protect taxpayers and students.

All schools in the city will be held accountable for academic performance by the State School Reform/Redesign Office, which will develop an “A-F” grading system so parents are able to easily find which schools are best for their children.  

“This legislation gives Michigan’s comeback city a fresh start in education,” Snyder said. “Now the residents of Detroit need to engage with their schools and help find good leaders who can provide the best possible chance of success for families in the city.”

For more information on this and other legislation, please visit www.legislature.mi.gov.

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