MHPSAS: DISTRICT BOARD PROPOSING SCHOOL TAKEOVER

Muskegon Heights, Michigan – From 2012 through now, an Academy board, appointed with
the agreement of the State, has provided for the administration of a student centered
education for the children of Muskegon Heights. The State took control from the Muskegon
Heights School District Board after the District ran up a multi-million dollar deficit and stopped
making payments on behalf of its teachers into the state retirement fund. Now, after an
intensive campaign mounted by the same board that ran up the deficit and its lawyers, the
State is considering handing the important day-to-day details of educating the children of
Muskegon Heights back to the elected board of the Muskegon Heights School District.
The Muskegon Heights Public School Board has repeatedly refused to be cooperative and
supportive of an infrastructure for success, refusing to follow the contract by denying the
appointment of qualified, professional nominees to the Academy Board. Additionally, the
Muskegon Heights Public School Board disregarded the language of its own contract with the
Academy and attempted to fire sitting Academy Board members who are overseeing the day to
day administration of the Academy.
“In the four years that I have been superintendent, the Academy has been self-managed. Our
14% fund balance, increased enrollment, 95% teacher stability, and improved academics have
all been under the direction of the Academy System Board,” said Superintendent Garcia.
“It’s unfortunate that the Muskegon Heights Public School Board, who are an important part of
our community, won’t refocus and take part in supporting the progress of the school. The board
and its attorney have publicly talked about just shutting down the schools,” said Academy
President Garland Kilgore.
Superintendent Garcia added, “We have done great work in our community in partnership
with concerned stakeholders, parents, and the scholars who attend our schools.”
Superintendent Garcia went on to say that “after years of educational gains, to take away the
stability our kids so deserve to please the adults who were present when $40,000,000 in debt
was run up is a disservice to our community.”
“The Muskegon Heights Public School Board is using Highland Park School District as a model
in their revisioning proposal. This model did not work in Highland Park, and it will not work here.
Highland Park is a kindergarten through eighth grade school, they do not have a high school.
We are committed to a high school in our community,” added Board President Kilgore. “We have
had our challenges, our K-12 model is making progress, we are committed to financial stability
and educational excellence for the students and families we serve.”
Members of the community who know school is essential are invited to attend the virtual public
State meeting tomorrow, May 19, see details below. There will also be a public comment period
for anyone who wishes to share their thoughts.

1
Muskegon Heights Public School
Academy System
2441 Sanford, Muskegon Heights, MI 49444
Phone 231-830-3703 • Fax 231-830-3755 • mhtigers.org

The State body that has the final say in the future of the children meets tomorrow at 4 p.m. The
virtual meeting may be accessed at this Link:
https://www.michigan.gov/treasury/0,4679,7-121-1751_51556_64472-542516–,00.html
Dial In
Join by dialing the phone number and conference ID# listed below:
1-248-509-0316
Conference ID: 963 328 367#

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