New players

Leader of newly rebranded Memphis Education Fund hires two associates from Indianapolis

PHOTO: Marta W. Aldrich
Offices for Memphis Education Fund collaborators are housed in a downtown Memphis building known as Teacher Town Commons.

The new CEO for a Memphis philanthropic collaborative has expanded his leadership team and hired two fellow Hoosiers as lieutenants.

PHOTO: Matt Detrich/The Indianapolis Star
Marcus Robinson

Marcus Robinson, a former Indianapolis charter school leader hired last summer to head the Memphis Education Fund, announced the arrival of his new team members this month following a rebranding last fall of the group formerly known as Teacher Town.

Regina Marsh joined the Memphis fund as its first director of operations and external relations. She has spent two decades as CEO of the Forest Manor Multi-service Center, where she oversaw a program that provides social services to impoverished families in Indianapolis.

Marsh will oversee internal operations for the Memphis fund, which aims to improve the city’s 10 percent of lowest-performing schools.

Clifford Stockton III will oversee office management and client relations for the Memphis fund. A Memphis native, Stockton worked in Indianapolis as an educator for Tindley Accelerated Schools, a charter school founded by Robinson. He is also the grandson of Clifford Stockton Sr., a long-time leader at the Memphis Chamber of Commerce.

Robinson said the hires are for new positions as “we restructure our staff to accommodate our growing mission.” The collaborative has 10 full-time staff members.

Created in 2014, the fund rebranded itself in November and broadened its focus from teacher recruitment and retainment to also training principals, supporting local efforts to improve low-performing schools, and engaging the community on education issues.

Where they stand

Where candidates for governor in Michigan stand on major education issues

There’s a lot at stake for students, parents, and educators in this year’s Michigan governor’s race.

The next governor, who will replace term-limited Republican Rick Snyder, could determine everything from how schools are funded to how they’re measured and judged. Some candidates are considering shuttering low-performing schools across the state. Others have called for charter schools to get some additional oversight.

To see where major party candidates stand on crucial education issues, Chalkbeat joined with our partners in the Detroit Journalism Cooperative to ask candidates for their views on school funding, early childhood education, and paying for college.

All seven major-party candidates on the ballot in Michigan’s August 7 primary were invited to sit down with the journalism cooperative, which also includes Bridge Magazine, WDET Radio, Michigan Radio, Detroit Public Television, and New Michigan Media, to answer a range of questions.

Six candidates — three Democrats and three Republicans — accepted our invitation. The one candidate who declined was Attorney General Bill Schuette, who is generally considered the Republican frontrunner.

The candidates were largely asked a standard set of questions. Read some of their answers — edited for length and clarity — below. Sort answers by candidate or see everyone’s answer to each question.

Or, to see each candidate’s full response to the education questions, watch videos of the interviews here.

(Full transcripts of the interviews, including answers to questions about roads, the environment and other issues are here).

in their own words

Watch candidates who want to be Michigan’s next governor explain how they would fix state schools

PHOTO: Detroit Journalism Cooperative
Six of the major candidates of governor in Michigan — three Democrats and three Republicans — answered questions from reporters with the Detroit Journalism Cooperative including Chalkbeat Detroit.

One candidate to become Michigan’s next governor said he would end state-funded preschool and childcare. Another said early education should be available to all children and paid for by the state.

Some gubernatorial contenders want to put an end to for-profit charter schools. Others are adamant that parents should have as many options as possible when it comes to education.

Chalkbeat, together with our partners in the Detroit Journalism Cooperative, which includes five other news organizations, sat down this month with six of the major candidates for governor to discuss a range of issues facing the state. One major party candidate, Republican Attorney General Bill Schuette, declined to participate.

Primary voters will go to the polls August 7 to nominate party candidates. The winners of those contests will face off in the general election in November.

To read a summary of each candidate’s answers to crucial education questions — and compare their answers to their competitors — click here.

Or, hear candidates’ full responses by clicking on their videos below.