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detroit public schools community district

Beenish Ahmed / Michigan Radio

Two of Michigan’s biggest school districts are taking a post-spring break break from in-person learning.

It’s a precautionary measure that Dearborn Public Schools and the Detroit Public Schools Community District will hope stem the spread of COVID-19, as cases spike again in Michigan. Both districts will temporarily return to virtual learning this week.

DPSCD Superintendent Nikolai Vitti
Detroit Public Schools Community District

Around 20,000 students in the Detroit Public Schools Community District are expected back in classrooms on Monday.

DPSCD suspended in-person learning when COVID-19 cases spiked in November. Now that community positivity rates have dropped well below 5%, the district decided it was time to re-open its doors, Superintendent Nikolai Vitti said.

Glenn Carstons-Peters / Unsplash

Michigan’s public schools have moved online, following orders from the state Department of Health and Human Services. Nobody wanted to conduct a school year like this, least of all Nikolai Vitti, superintendent of Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD). Since fall, the school district offered a hybrid model of instruction including online and in-person. Making that decision was difficult.

Unsplash

Today on Stateside, COVID-19 cases continue to rise and hospitals throughout Michigan are nearing capacity. A reporter who’s been following the story talks us through when a vaccine might be distributed to Michigan's frontline health workers. Also, the head of the state’s largest school district speaks to the challenges of 2020 and beyond. Plus, support for kids and families navigating grief this holiday season.

Motown31 / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

The Detroit teachers union has ratified a one-year contract with the state's largest school system.

The short term of the contract is due to uncertainty over state funding for schools in future years, according to Detroit Public Schools Community District.

The contract boosts starting salaries for new teachers to $51,019, which the district says is the highest starting salary of any school district in Michigan.

school hallway
Detroit Public Schools / Detroit Public Schools

Detroit Federation of Teachers members have given their leadership the go-ahead to strike if the union’s return-to-school safety demands aren’t met.

In a Wednesday evening vote, 91% of participating DFT members voted to authorize a “safety strike” if the Detroit Public Schools Community District doesn’t “implement basic science-based safety protocols before schools reopen during the continuing coronavirus pandemic.”

Detroit Public Schools

The Detroit Federation of Teachers will be voting Wednesday on whether to strike over COVID-19 related health and safety concerns.

The union, which represents 4,200 Detroit Public School employees, wants to start the school year in a completely online format.

 

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

The Detroit Public Schools Community District wants parent input about how their students will be learning in the fall.

DPSCD is offering both fully virtual and face-to-face instruction. District officials say they want a parent feedback survey completed by August 4, though the “drop-dead deadline” for responses is August 21.

school hallway
Detroit Public Schools / Detroit Public Schools

Michigan’s largest school district has approved a re-opening plan that includes in-person learning.

The Detroit Public Schools Community District board voted for the plan Tuesday night. It calls for schools to make a number of adaptations to manage the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

DPSCD Superintendent Nikolai Vitti
Detroit Public Schools Community District

Hundreds of Detroit students started in-person summer school programs in Detroit Public Schools Community District buildings on Monday, in the face of some public opposition.

A small group of protesters blocked the exit to a school bus depot on the city’s west side, preventing the buses from picking up more than 200 enrolled students, said DPSCD Superintendent Nikolai Vitti.

DPSCD Superintendent Nikolai Vitti
Detroit Public Schools Community District

The Detroit Public Schools Community District wants feedback on its recently released draft plan to re-open schools.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A federal appeals court has handed a victory to Detroit public school students suing for the “right to literacy.”

One of the attorneys in the case called the ruling “historic.”

The 2016 lawsuit was filed against the state of Michigan on behalf of students from several of Detroit’s worst performing schools.

Voncile Campbell in green striped shirt smiling
Warren E. Bow School / Facebook

Thousands of Michigan students have been cut adrift from their school communities as the coronavirus pandemic has shuttered school buildings. Their academic paths suddenly depend on their family’s ability to obtain electronic devices or pay for internet service. But teachers are working to find new ways to stay connected with their students—like virtual bedtime stories. 

DPSCD Superintendent Nikolai Vitti
Detroit Public Schools Community District

The Detroit Public Schools Community District will start making assignments and teacher instruction videos available next week, according to the district’s superintendent, Nikolai Vitti.

Online course materials will be posted on the district’s website. Paper copies will also be available at sites throughout the district, starting at its food distribution centers.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Detroit Public Schools Community District officials are changing the way the district provides free meals to children in response to the governor’s order to “stay at home” during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Children in a classroom
Mercedes Mejia / Michigan Radio

Public school students in Detroit will soon have access to new mental health care services.

The Detroit Public Schools Community District is teaming up with a University of Michigan program called TRAILS, or Transforming Research into Action to Improve the Lives of Students.

someone writing on a ballot
Michael Dorausch / Flickr, http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

 

Today on Stateside, we talk to Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin (D-Holly) about what she’s seen during a trip to the U.S.—Mexico border. Plus, a look at what it takes to turn a petition drive into a question on the ballot in Michigan. 

Nikolai Vitti
Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Nikolai Vitti, superintendent of Detroit Public Schools Community District, is strongly opposed to an education bill making its way through the state's lame-duck legislature. SB 5526 narrowly passed with some amendments in the state House around 3 a.m. Thursday morning. The bill goes next to the state Senate.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

A group of Detroit students walked out of class in protest on Wednesday, the same day the state uses student attendance numbers to decide how much per-pupil funding school districts receive.

The students say they did it to draw attention to water contamination in the Detroit Public Schools Community District. The district cut off drinking fountains and other drinking water sources before the school year started, after tests found high levels of lead and copper in some schools.

drinking fountain
Flickr

Students across Michigan are heading back to school this month, and in some cities, students won’t be getting their water out of drinking fountains.

In August, Detroit Public Schools Community District announced that all drinking water in the district would be shut off indefinitely after elevated lead and copper levels were discovered. As of September 19, results found elevated levels in water fixtures at 57 of 86 schools tested so far. And in Flint, the public schools plan to continue using water bottles until January.

Daniel Howes / Detroit News

What do you get when you combine Detroit Public Schools, the Kresge Foundation and the University of Michigan?

Answer: A place called Hope.

Nearly two years after Detroit’s Marygrove College faced financial collapse, the tiny school is opening a new chapter, thanks to some of the region’s biggest players. And the Detroit Public Schools Community District gets a chance to prove its mettle under new leadership.

Sleeping Bear Dunes, a popular tourist spot in Northern Michigan
Flickr user Rodney Campbell / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

On today's Stateside, the students in Detroit's public schools are starting the year drinking bottled water after high levels of copper and lead were found in some drinking fountains. Plus, trips to Michigan's sand dunes are a classic summer activity, but could climate change reshape the state's beloved natural landmarks? 

Nikolai Vitti
Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Michigan’s largest school district was back in session Tuesday, as around 50,000 students in the Detroit Public Schools Community District headed back to class.

Students and staff came back to a handful of big changes, some more visible than others.

drinking fountain
jasongillman / Pixabay

Detroit students won't be drinking out of water fountains when school starts next week.

The Detroit Public Schools Community District announced Wednesday that students will be using bottled water after tests showed elevated lead and copper levels at some of the schools.

School desks
Flickr user Frank Juarez/Flickr / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Michigan is not doing a good job educating children with disabilities. That’s according to a recent letter from the U.S. Department of Education.

Michigan was the only state rated as needing federal intervention after failing to meet special education standards.

A few weeks before that letter became public, Detroit Public Schools Community District announced it would be doing a massive overhaul of its special education program.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

This week could be pivotal for a massive class action lawsuit connected to the Flint water crisis. 

DPSCD Superintendent Nikolai Vitti
Detroit Public Schools Community District / Facebook

 


Years of neglect have taken a terrible toll on school buildings in the Detroit Public Schools Community District.

The district has just completed a review of its facilities, and the result is stunning.

The cost to fix Detroit school buildings is $500 million. If the district doesn't address the problems soon, in just five years that cost will balloon into the billions.

A map of the GOAL line bus route.
city of Detroit

Despite their ongoing competition for students, the Detroit Public Schools Community District and charter schools will team up to provide some joint services for students and families.

The city’s newly-formed Community Education Commission will take on that task. Its first order of business: running a bus loop connecting six DPSCD and four charter schools on the city’s west side.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

2,000 Detroit public school teachers are getting a bonus.

It’s part of the district’s plan to attract and retain teachers.

Fitzgerald High School
Fitzgerald Public Schools

Violent threats have closed down more than two dozen schools across metro Detroit Thursday.

Those include two entire school districts: Oak Park Public Schools in Oakland County, and Fitzgerald Public Schools in Macomb County. Oak Park schools will be closed again Friday due to social media threats against multiple schools.

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