Stateside: New state superintendent; “second act” teachers; land baroness of Ontonagon Cty. | Michigan Radio

Stateside: New state superintendent; “second act” teachers; land baroness of Ontonagon Cty.

May 15, 2019


Today on Stateside, debate was heated as Republican state lawmakers passed bills banning an abortion procedure known as "dilation and evacuation." Plus, Michigan's next state superintendent talks about what he sees as the most pressing issues facing Michigan schools. 

Listen to the full show above or find individual segments below. 

Bills banning abortion procedure set up showdown between Republican lawmakers and Gov. Whitmer 

  • Michigan has joined a growing list of states where GOP-led legislatures have passed or introduced bills restricting access to abortion. Republicans in the state House and Senate passed bills banning an abortion procedure known as "dilation and evacuation" that's typically used in abortions performed during the second trimester of pregnancy. We talk to Detroit Free Press reporter Kathy Gray about the emotional debate over the bills at the Capitol, and Governor Whitmer's promise to veto them. 

Markel: Playwright Lorraine Hansberry’s early death highlights pancreatic cancer’s brutal toll 

  • This coming Sunday marks the birthday of one of our most important African-American writers. Lorraine Hansberry was born May 19, 1930. She is the first African-American woman playwright to have her work produced on Broadway. Hansberry passed away at the young age of 34 from pancreatic cancer. University of Michigan medical historian Dr. Howard Markel joins Stateside to discuss Hansberry's cultural legacy and the illness that cut her life short.  

Some states are expunging marijuana-related convictions. Why isn’t Michigan?

  • Both recreational and medical marijuana are now legal in Michigan. Unlike some other states that have legalized the drug, Michigan's law doesn't allow for the expungement of past marijuana-related convictions. But some advocates are hopeful that the state will soon move to change that. We talk to Margeaux Bruner, political director for the Michigan Cannabis Industry Association, about the push to clear criminal records related to marijuana.

Copper claims, mysterious lights, and a land baroness: a history of the U.P.’s Ontonagon County

  • We are on a journey to explore the vast geography of Michigan county by county. This week, we head to Ontonagon County in the Upper Peninsula. State Archivist Mark Harvey, with the Michigan History Center, joins us to talk about the county's unique history, including the story of its 19th century land baroness Addie Lathrop.

New state superintendent Michael Rice shares his top priorities for Michigan students 

  • Michael Rice spent 12 years leading the Kalamazoo Public Schools. He is now expanding his portfolio to the entire state of Michigan. Rice was chosen as the next superintendent of Michigan's schools after a 5-3 vote by the State Board of Education. Rice joins Stateside to discuss a few of the top issues facing Michigan students, and what he'd focus on as the state's top education leader. 

Ragatz: Second-career teachers bring perspective and passion to classroom 

  • School districts across Michigan are on the hunt for K-12 teachers in all subjects. A growing worry over filling teacher jobs stems from candidates who are being lured by higher-paying jobs outside of the classroom. But could that be a two-way street? Michigan Radio's education commentator and National Hall of Fame teacher Matinga Ragatz joins Stateside to talk about what teachers who have had careers outside of the classroom can bring to the table.  

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