A Michigan school district may be completely replaced by charter schools

May 25, 2012

The Muskegon Heights School District could be completely turned over to charter schools this fall.   That would be a first in the state of Michigan.   

The district’s emergency manager is submitting his plan to replace the entire school district with charter schools with the state Treasury and Education Departments today.  He says that’s the only way to get the district out of its financial crisis.

Emergency manager Donald Weatherspoon is asking the state to expedite the process of authorizing charter schools so that the schools can open this fall. 

“I want to assure the community that there is going to be school. The change from how things are being done now to this fall will be transparent,” says Weatherspoon.

The Muskegon Heights school district has a deficit that tops $12 million.  The debt would remain with the old school district.  It remains unclear how the district will pay off the debt.

Weatherspoon would technically be the only employee of the old school district. Current Muskegon Heights School District employees would have to apply for jobs with the new charter school operators.