Local school districts to hold meetings, receive grants

By: Maria Allard | Warren Weekly | Published January 7, 2019

 Fitzgerald Public Schools officials will hold strategic plan meetings this month, including one session set for Jan. 17 at the Schofield Early Childhood Center, 21555 Warner. District residents are encouraged to attend the meeting that is most convenient for them.

Fitzgerald Public Schools officials will hold strategic plan meetings this month, including one session set for Jan. 17 at the Schofield Early Childhood Center, 21555 Warner. District residents are encouraged to attend the meeting that is most convenient for them.

File photo by Erin Sanchez

WARREN/CENTER LINE — As the new year begins, school officials in one local district are seeking community input, while another district will receive grant money.

Officials in Fitzgerald Public Schools are hosting a series of strategic plan information sessions this month, which are open to all of the district’s residents.

Meanwhile, Center Line Public Schools officials recently announced that the district is the recipient of two separate grants.


Fitzgerald Public Schools
The purpose of the strategic plan presentations is to provide community members with a strategic plan progress report and to solicit ideas related to future educational programming and “right-sizing” of the district. Right-sizing basically means to convert something to optimum size.

“We are doing some great things in Fitzgerald,” FPS Superintendent Laurie Fournier said in a prepared statement. “I want to share the progress we are making as we work to create a dynamic school district that will prepare students for the future. I also want to seek community reaction to some of the facility enhancements we have to address this year.”

The first meeting was scheduled for Jan. 8, after press time at Westview Lower Elementary School.

The second meeting is set for Jan. 9 at Chatterton Middle School, 24333 Ryan Road.

A third meeting is scheduled for Jan. 17 at the Schofield Early Childhood Center, 21555 Warner Ave. All meetings are scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. and end by 8 p.m. FPS residents are encouraged to attend the meeting that is most convenient for them.

“We are asking people who live in the Fitzgerald Public School District to invest 90 minutes of their time to hear what is being planned and to share their ideas with the Board of Education and administration,” Fournier said.

For more information, call any FPS school principal or Superintendent Laurie Fournier at (586) 757-1750.


Center Line Public Schools
On Dec. 26, CLPS officials announced that the district has received two separate grants.

The Michigan Department of Education awarded the district the Marshall Plan for Talent grant, which was written by CLPS, Fraser Public Schools and Armada Area Schools.

The district also received $300,000 to bring John Hattie’s Visible Learning team to the district.

“Both of the grants are going to bring tremendous benefits to our students,” CLPS Superintendent Eve Kaltz said.

The Marshall Plan for Talent grant amounts to $1.5 million, which will be shared by CLPS, Fraser and Armada. Each district will receive $500,000, and the grant money will be used in a variety of ways.

The Marshall Plan for Talent is designed for Center Line and the other two districts to expand their partnerships with local businesses. Through the grant, school officials will be able to pay industry mentors to assist in teaching classes related to various fields.

Each of the three districts will be able to hire a career navigator who will help facilitate the process. This also gives students the opportunity to tour different companies in which they have an interest, job shadow professionals and participate in internships.

The Marshall Plan for Talent grant also will provide additional funds for the work Center Line is doing to develop more engaging instruction, including the need to purchase additional manufacturing equipment and to offer stipends to teachers to work with experts while designing curriculum to support new programs.

“It’s really exciting because it’s going to provide a lot of additional support for business partners,” Kaltz said. “We looked at jobs that are in high demand. This is the pipeline to securing stable jobs for our kids and will give our kids some additional opportunities.”

Center Line also will utilize a $300,000 grant to bring in members from John Hattie’s Visible Learning team. According to Kaltz, Hattie and his colleagues researched more than 300 million students worldwide and identified more than 250 factors that impact student learning.

Center Line officials will use the grant money to bring Hattie’s team into the district to work with staff. The team will run professional development for the staff and will also stop at each building to visit classrooms and provide feedback.

“The research looked at what are the different strategies they’re seeing in the classrooms across the world,” Kaltz said. “The power of the Visible Learning research lies not only in helping educators understand how much impact each influence has on student achievement, but also in understanding impact relative to other influences. Educators who understand which influences have the greatest impact on student achievement can make strategic decisions based on evidence to maximize their time, energy and resources.”