Rise & Shine

Rise & Shine: Why Michigan’s troubling ranking for special education outcomes improved

Good morning!

Michigan made news last summer when a federal report ranked it as the worst state in the nation for special education outcomes. Fast forward a year and Michigan’s ranking has improved. But does that mean things are better?

My story looks at what changed for Michigan. The bottom line: More students with disabilities are being tested. But academic outcomes, as measured on a national exam, are unchanged. That’s because that exam wasn’t given last year.

State officials, who took a lot of hits after the rankings last year were widely publicized, are encouraged.

Read the story here. Then scroll down for more education headlines from Michigan and beyond.

And have a great Friday and weekend!

— Lori Higgins, senior reporter


Rise & Shine is Chalkbeat’s morning digest of education news. Subscribe to have it delivered to your inbox.


SPECIAL EDUCATION RANKINGS Michigan has moved up in federal special education rankings, thanks largely to schools testing more students with disabilities. Chalkbeat Detroit News

CENSUS RULING School district leaders can breathe a sigh of relief — at least, a short one — after the Supreme Court blocked the Trump administration from adding a question about citizenship to the 2020 census. Chalkbeat

DESEGREGATION Democratic presidential candidates Joe Biden and Kamala Harris clash on the issue of school desegregation during Thursday night’s debate. Chalkbeat

SCHOOL REFORM An inside look at how an ambitious and well-funded school reform initiative has struggled to translate its spending and unconventional strategy into widespread attention to its cause. Chalkbeat

RACIAL INEQUITIES School troubles in Grosse Pointe, Benton Harbor and Detroit highlight the inequities between school district, says a columnist. Detroit Free Press

START DATE Michigan’s next state superintendent will begin his new position this summer. Detroit News

BENTON HARBOR DEAL The deal to save Benton Harbor High School from closure should be viewed critically because the conditions that led to the threat of closure haven’t changed and will be difficult to change in one year, says a columnist. Detroit News

NO CELLS A west Michigan school district is barring students from using cell phones in its schools. WXYZ Detroit Free Press Patch

PETITIONS REJECTED A Wayne County panel has rejected the petitions to recall several members of the Grosse Pointe school board over a controversial plan to close schools. Detroit News

DISCIPLINE GRIEVANCE A Michigan school district has denied a grievance filed on behalf of teachers over student discipline issues that are being blamed in part on a Michigan law that bars the use of seclusion and restraint of students. WHMI