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Rep. Wozniak: Legislature has delivered a safe, practical plan for state’s education restart
RELEASE|August 17, 2020
Contact: Doug Wozniak

Proposals offer local input and track progress to ensure safety for students, staff

State Rep. Douglas Wozniak, of Shelby Township, today voted to advance a plan which helps K-12 students resume education safely this fall.

The legislation now heading to the governor’s desk empowers local school districts by allowing them to determine the best course of action for their students. This could include online, in person or hybrid instruction based on consultations with local health departments.

“Education is essential to the development of our kids, and every school district across the state acts as a different puzzle piece as we work to resume education this fall while keeping students and staff safe,” Wozniak said. “This wasn’t a situation that called for a one-size-fits-all approach because COVID-19 has impacted different areas of the state differently. Our communities needed flexibility and the ability to work with the facts in front of them. This plan accomplishes that.”

Parents will have a vital say in the process and school boards will be required to reexamine and recertify instruction plans at monthly board meetings for the duration of the 2020-21 school year.

Additionally, local benchmark assessments will provide detailed information to parents and teachers about where a student needs additional help to ensure they stay on track. Younger students are a key component as they tend to have more success within a classroom setting. If districts determine it is safe to offer in-person learning, they are encouraged – but not required – to prioritize in-person instruction to K-5 students.

As the coming school year will pose significant additional costs to school districts as they work to impose new safety standards and innovative teaching methods, Wozniak and the Legislature previously dedicated a total of $583 million in federal Coronavirus Relief Funds to Michigan schools, including:

  • $350 per student across the board, ensuring schools have the resources they need to educate children.
  • More than $50 million in hazard pay for educators who have been flexible and innovative in the face of unprecedented change. 
  • $18 million for safety measures and local benchmark assessments to ensure kids stay on track with learning. 
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