Lansing—Citing findings from four public listening sessions and written comments received from parents and community members, the Michigan Department of Civil Rights (MDCR) has recommended that the Grosse Pointe Public Schools District (GPPSS) and Grosse Pointe School Board restart their decision-making process on reconfiguring the school district.
“It is clear that the community perceives that the process for deciding the fate of their neighborhood schools lacked transparency and the effective involvement of the people most impacted by the reconfiguration,” said Agustin V. Arbulu, Director of MDCR. “The process also failed to adequately take into consideration issues of racial equity and disparate impacts on children and communities of color. For these and other reasons we outline in our report, we strongly recommend that the School Board restart their deliberation with an eye to creating a more inclusive and transparent process.”
In the report, the Department offers seven key recommendations for improving the process and insuring the Board is taking into consideration the concerns of all stakeholders. The recommendations include:
Director Arbulu has requested to present the report at the Grosse Pointe School Board’s June 24th meeting.
“The Department commends the School Board for seeking our help to ensure they were hearing from all segments of the community,” said Arbulu. “I believe these recommendations will allow the school district to regain a measure of public trust in their decision making and result in a more equitable outcome for all the families of the Grosse Pointe School District. The Department is committed to assisting the school district as needed with implementing a number of these recommendations.”
For the full MDCR report, go to https://www.michigan.gov/documents/mdcr/Final_UPDATED_MDCR_Report_for_GP_School_Board_6-17-19_658196_7.pdf
The Michigan Department of Civil Rights is charged with investigating and resolving discrimination complaints and works to prevent discrimination through educational programs that promote voluntary compliance with civil rights laws. The Department also provides information and services to businesses on diversity initiatives and equal employment law. For more information on the Michigan Department of Civil Rights, go to www.michigan.gov/mdcr.
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