Undocumented immigrants face higher tuition at some Michigan colleges and universities

By DARCIE MORAN

Capital News Service

LANSING — A college acceptance letter isn’t always all it’s cracked up to be.

For many undocumented immigrants in Michigan and their children, the application process is just one hurdle on the road to a college education.

“They’ve invested so much in their education but when they come to go to college, that’s when the road closes on them,” said Jose Franco, founder of One Michigan, a Detroit-based group that works for immigrant rights.

Some Michigan public universities offer in-state tuition rates for undocumented students. But many four-year colleges and most community colleges don’t – even though students may have lived their entire life in the state.

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Preparation for trades could count toward graduation under proposed legislation

By ASHLEY WEIGEL

Capital News Service

LANSING — High school students could learn algebra while working with metal under legislation pending in the Senate.

The bills sponsored by Rep. Ed McBroom, R-Vulcan, and Rep. Joel Johnson, R-Clare, would give students more flexibility in classes they could take in high school. They could take an agricultural science or anatomy class in place of the traditional second year science class, swap a foreign language class for an industrial art class and fulfill the Algebra II requirement with classes that incorporate the material differently.

The Michigan Merit Curriculum enacted in 2006 allows little flexibility for students to explore a career field, McBroom said.

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New concussion rules take the field in June

By CELESTE BOTT

Capital News Service

LANSING – Michigan will soon require K-12 schools to create awareness programs to educate coaches, parents and athletes on the perils of sports concussions.

Meanwhile, the effort to raise awareness about the signs, symptoms and consequences of concussions is growing statewide.

A concussion is a serious brain injury caused by a blow to the head. It often happens to participants in sports or other recreational activities.
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Schools look bad while doing good

By JUSTINE McGUIRE

Capital News Service

LANSING – On-time high school graduation rates are down in Leelanau County, but is that a bad thing?

2011 graduation statistics look worse in Leelanau County, but it’s because Suttons Bay High School has taken on at-risk students whom the district knows won’t graduate in the standard four years, said Principal Raphael Rittenhouse.

He said other districts around the state try to get at-risk students to drop out before they bring down graduations statistics – before ninth grade – or send them to alternative schools for the same reason.
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New partnership, new online focus for student teachers

By CELESTE BOTT

Capital News Service

LANSING – The University of Detroit Mercy is partnering with the Michigan Virtual University to help UDM education students learn to teach online.

Both undergraduate and graduate students can enroll this summer in Advanced Instructional Technology/Teaching in the Virtual Environment. The program, which resembles a student teaching experience, is an introductory course focused on online instruction.

Students will help teach a variety of subjects to high school students in virtual classrooms through the Michigan Virtual University.
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Out-of-state students boost university budgets

By EDITH ZHOU

Capital News Service

LANSING –When the state cuts funding to public higher education, universities generally react by raising tuition. But a second option is to increase the number of out-of-state and international students who pay more to attend.

For example, Michigan State University charges about $12,000 for undergraduate state residents, But out-of-state and international students pay $32,000 – $33,000 each year.

Michigan ranks 9th in the nation in the number of international students enrolled in the state’s 15 public universities, but only 45th in out-of-state enrollment.
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Charter school students learning more, study finds

By CELESTE BOTT

Capital News Service

LANSING – An average Michigan charter school student will learn more in a year than his or her public school peer, according to a new report by Stanford University’s Center for Research on Education Outcomes.

The study found that students from Michigan charter schools learn an average of two month’s more of math and reading per academic year.

Twenty-seven percent of the state’s charter school students are from Detroit, and Detroit charter school students gained up to three months’ worth of additional education, it said.
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Push on vocational training would ease curriculum mandate

By CORTNEY ERNDT

Capital News Service

LANSING – A proposal to lower Michigan Merit Curriculum (MMC) requirements for vocational training students may boost manufacturing careers, some legislators said.

Students who successfully complete one year of vocational training would be able to avoid the mandatory algebra II credit, a credit of science, one credit of the arts, and the online/learning experience requirement.

Rep. Joel Johnson, R-Clare, said, “I really feel that we need to make sure those who have an interest in a vocational skill have an opportunity to learn those skills without being penalized.”
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Tablet computers springing up in more classrooms

By MICHAEL GERSTEIN

Capital News Service

LANSING – How do you keep students interested? Novelty.

As the burgeoning tablet market reaches into the under-tapped field of education, iPads and other tablets are finding a happy home in tech-starved schools across the state. And some teachers say they may have the sought-after solution to the problem of student engagement as their districts appropriate millions of dollars for new technology.

Dozens of schools in Michigan have already purchased iPads for students, and many more are considering the same, according to the Department of Education.

Sturgis High School and Ludington’s Franklin Elementary School bought enough for every student.
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Core curriculum changes deter career training

By CORTNEY ERNDT

Capital News Service

LANSING – High school students are locked into a tougher core curriculum, leading to a drop in vocational program enrollment.

Students have less time to leave their high school building to attend a career tech center program that provides career-oriented courses.

Career tech center enrollment decreased 30 percent the first year the new Michigan Merit Curriculum became effective for the Class of 2011, Michigan Association of School Boards Deputy Director Don Wotruba said.
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