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The state wants your input on education changes

Notebook and pencil laid across the pages of an open book
Jane M Sawyer
Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0
The state department of education is seeking feedback at seven public meetings schedulued through mid-December.

The state Department of Education wants public feedback on how to reshape Michigan's education plan in response to a change in federal law.

The Every Student Succeeds Act, or ESSA is replacing No Child Left Behind.

Vanessa Keesler is the deputy superintendent in the division of educator, student, and school supports at the Michigan Department of Education. She says the new law gives the state more "flexibility."

Keesler says seven public meetings are scheduled through next month.

Find a list of them here.

She says these meetings are meant to help make sure the state's ongoing plan to become a "Top 10" state in education in 10 years matches what parents and educators want to see coming to their schools.

"We think parents could react to those [ideas] based on experience in their local districts, or could provide help prioritizing," Keesler says. "There [are] more good ideas than we can focus on."

Officials at the Michigan Department of Education say they are also focusing on streamlining services, and cutting through red tape. They say the state has reduced the amount of paper reporting districts are required to file by 40% -- progress they say was made independently of the federal law change.

Six of the seven meetings are scheduled during normal business hours. The department of education is also seeking feedback through an online survey.

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