It’s FINALLY Summer in Michigan, which means that we all – including the legislature – are about to go on a well-deserved break. This break provides not only the opportunity to appreciate the great lakes, sand dunes, and superman ice cream, but to begin recalibrating our policy work, doing some research projects, and exploring new areas of interest. Let’s all take a deep breath and find out what’s next.
The Legislature’s Budgets
Last month, the Michigan House and Senate released their FY24 budget proposals. Both houses concurred with the Governor on increasing operational funding to the state public institutions, investing in providing high-quality tutoring resources for K-12 students through the MI Kids Back on Track Program, in wraparound and basic needs resources to support student success, and in creating the infrastructure necessary for establishing clearer guidelines for stackable credential pathways. However, neither house included direct support for the high school graduating classes of 2020 – 2022 to enroll in postsecondary education. We look forward to continuing to work with the Governor and legislature to finalize an FY24 budget that reflects the needs of our students and communities.
For more information about what is in the Governor’s and legislature’s budgets, read our fact sheet and statement here.
Finalizing the FY24 Budget
The broad goal of the Governor, legislature, and advocates is to finalize the budget before the Summer Break which lasts from July until the end of August. The consequence of not completing the budget by June is having to come back in September on a tight deadline to finish by the end of the fiscal year on September 30 to avoid a government shutdown if there is no new budget by October 1. And then start the process for the next fiscal year already behind. All in all, it is preferable for everyone to finish the budget earlier rather than later, however, that is all dependent on how negotiations between the three branches of government proceed.
The summer is a great time to take a beat, reflect on the last year, learn something new, and start to strategize for next year. This month you might consider the following actions:
- Review the final budget looking for wins and continued areas of opportunity for next year.
- Uplift these wins and opportunities in a social media post, fact sheet, or coalition letter!
- Use this time to reflect on your strategy for this season and use the lessons to help you strategize for next year.
- Reach out to some new folks, learn about their work and priorities, and build new avenues for partnership and policy exploration.
- Meeting new folks can not only expand your network of support but also open your eyes to issues you had not previously been aware of!
- Conduct research related to current policy issues and burning questions.
- There are always more questions to be asked and answers to be found! Use this time to better inform yourself about some burning policy topics.
- Share this new information to help better inform the community.
- Prepare for conference season in the fall!
As we strategize for next year, the TICAS Michigan team wants to be sure to keep you informed on what’s on the horizon related to higher education and financial aid policy. If there is any item listed above that you’d like to learn more about or be more closely involved in, please reach out to our team by email (email@example.com) or by scheduling a meeting here.
Please send any resources, events, or other materials that you would like us to share in our newsletters to Manon Steel at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Community Partner Highlights
HB4676 Education Requirements for Children Placed in Foster Care, Introduced by Representative Young, Supported by the Park West Foundation – This bill intends to ensure foster youth are enrolled in schools immediately with accurate, up-to-date records and be working towards completing the Michigan Merit Curriculum’s standards for high school graduation. Foster youth currently have the lowest graduation rate in MI (40%); only 16% of youth in foster care are testing proficient in Math and only 26% are considered proficient in English as of 2022. For more information or to best support this effort, please contact Saba Gebrai with the Park West Foundation.
Policymakers have Opportunities to make sure Michigan’s Young Adults can Thrive, Sarah Atwood, Michigan League for Public Policy – This blog outlines the frustrations of a MLPP communications intern as she is about to graduate from college and is considering what policymakers can do to help people like her thrive in Michigan. She writes: “Everyone has the right to high-quality education, housing and medical care, and it’s up to Michigan policymakers to provide and protect the access to these basic rights.”
Michigan Senate Joins State House in Unveiling Historic Budget Proposals, Da’Stanza Murphy, The Education Trust – Midwest – This blog reviews the recent investments made in the House and Senate School Aid budget proposals. Both bills made historic investments in the MI Kids Back on Track program, a proposal initially made in the Governor’s recommendation to provide high quality tutoring for all K-12 students among other key investments.
STUDENT SUCCESS STRATEGY MANAGER (Full-time, Flexible/Hybrid, $84,471 – $125,818) – The Office of 60 by 30 in the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) is seeking a new Student Success Strategy Manager. “This position will lead the state’s efforts to increase college enrollment and completion and manage staff focused on promoting enrollment and addressing barriers to student success in postsecondary educational attainment.” Interested applicants should apply by July 4 at 5:00 EST.
TICAS Michigan Resources
Thank you to everyone who contributed to our latest community blog which asked: “How can we better include community in the policymaking process?” You told us that organizations like TICAS can improve by restructuring our work to build stronger connections between the community and the people in power and sharing critical information on current policy issues and the policy process. This restructuring will not only ensure our organization’s priorities reflect the needs of Michiganders but will also empower our partners to be more actively engaged in the policy process.
Partner Events and Resources
To combat summer melt, the Detroit Regional Chamber will be connecting students in the Detroit Metro area with high school counselors, where they build a strong, trusting relationship with Summer STEP coaches to make meaningful decisions regarding college selection. The coaches will also help participating students’ complete paperwork, including but not limited to FAFSA and financial aid, housing, and enrollment forms. Students will also set up an action plan to help plan for and address their basic needs in college. This opportunity will be available to students from April 3 until August 18. For more information, please reach out to Ashley Terry, Ed.D. (Detroit contact) at email@example.com or Ezella McPherson, Ph.D. (Tri-County contact) at firstname.lastname@example.org. Students can sign up for this resource here.
June Conferences and Events
- Developing Kids Workforce Development Training – Monday, June 19 – Thursday, June 22
- Michigan Center for Youth Justice Building Momentum: Youth Justice Film Screening & Panel Discussion – Friday, June 23
- Michigan Association for Secondary School Principals EdCon 2023 – Monday, June 26
- Eastside Community Network Grill & Chill Cooking Program – Wednesday, June 28, 4:00 – 5:00
- MASP ACRES Training Cohort: Facilitating Science Practices – Wednesday, June 28, 3:30 – 5:30
- Ypsilanti District Library Lunch, Listen, & Learn – Friday, June 30
- State House rejects 20% cut to cyber school funding requested by Gov. Whitmer (The Detroit Free Press)
- Last graduates leave Michigan college after 100-plus years (MLive)
- Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center awarded funding to help ease supply chain issues (Crain’s Detroit)
- Report finds almost 40% of MI households struggled to afford the basics in 2021 (Michigan Radio)
- DEI Legislation Tracker (Chronicle of Higher Education)
- Michigan’s pitch to lure new residents: nature, high tech, abortion rights (Bridge MI)
- Federal Student Aid funding woes complicate resuming student loan payments (Inside Higher Ed)
Look Out For
- Grand Rapids Promise Zone FAFSA Completion Workshop – Wednesday, July 12, 5:30 – 7:30
- LAUP Fiesta Week 2023 – Wednesday, July 12 – Saturday, July 15
- Michigan College Access Network Annual Conference Call for Proposals – Monday, July 17
- Michigan Education Association Summer Conference – Tuesday, July 18 – Thursday, July 20
- Michigan League for Public Policy Advocacy Boot Camp – Friday, July 21st and Friday, July 28th 10:00 – 3:00
- Grand Traverse Community Foundation Community Happy Hour – Thursday, July 27, 5:00 – 7:00
- MASB New Board Member Webinar Series: Meet the Michigan Education Leadership Group – Wednesday, August 9, 12:00 – 1:00
- Developing Kids Summer Showcase – Thursday, August 10
New Partners, Welcome!
Partnership is a great opportunity not only for the purpose of collaboration and alignment of shared interest, but it also allows our TICAS Michigan team to learn how we can best advocate for the needs of Michigan students and families in policy by learning from community partners.
Please join us in uplifting community partner organizations impacting students on their postsecondary journeys across the state.
If you are interested in sharing with us how we could best support your community and partners alike in policy, please use and share the form below on “How to Get Involved”. This form is not a commitment form but rather an opportunity for us to learn more about the needs in supporting Michigan communities in higher education policy and resources needed.