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Wednesday is student count day in Michigan

Backs of schoolkids with colorful rucksacks moving in the street
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The student tally that happens on the October count day represents 90% of state funding for schools.

Wednesday is student count day for all Michigan public school students.

On count day, each student is tallied to determine state funding. School districts then get a specific amount of funding per student.

"The state allocates a majority of student funding from per pupil counts. So for every student, districts get a little over 9,600 dollarsin this year's budget," said Robert McCann, executive director of the educational advocacy group The K-12 Alliance of Michigan. "So having accurate counts at our school level is ultimately what matters most for schools ensuring they have the resources that they need and deserve."

Students who have an excused absence on count day are eligible to be counted as long as they attend school within thirty days of count day. If a student has an unexcused absence, they must attend within ten days for the school to receive funding.

McCann said population decline in Michigan could complicate the state's counting procedure.

"The reliance on that per pupil count means that a loss of a few students could have a pretty sizable impact on any given district's school budget and their ability to deliver services to their kids," he said.

Wednesday's count represents 90% of state funding for schools. The other 10% comes from a second count the state holds in February.

George Weykamp is a senior at the University of Michigan studying business law and history. He was the 2022 University Editor at The Michigan Daily where he oversaw coverage of the first firing of a University President in over a century as well as a historic sexual misconduct settlement.
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