Back to School Series

Max Johnston

Michigan schools have one of the highest rates of chronic absenteeism in the country. That’s students that miss at least 10 percent of the school year.

 

However, Birch Street Elementary school in Kalkaska has found a way to keep kids in school by helping them inside and outside of the classroom.

Proponents of publicly funded, privately run charter schools hail them as the way to keep public schools and public school teachers "on their toes" by creating competition. 

Here in Michigan we have roughly 145,000 students in more than 300 charter schools, according to Education Trust Midwest.

And a report that group released earlier this year showed that charter school enrollment in the 2014-2015 school year consisted of disproportionately minority and low-income students. 

College expenses are rising. There’s no doubt about that.

Trying to pay for tuition, books, a place to live and more can stretch a budget to its breaking point.

Olivia Johnson, a criminal justice student at Ferris State University, knows that struggle, and she’s seen it on campus.

That’s why she started the Student Emergency Food Pantry for Ferris students this year.

Put that cell phone away. Not in your pocket, not in your purse, go park it in your locker and keep it out of the classroom.

That's the new rule for students returning to class at Lakeview High School in Battle Creek.

According to principal Jeff Bohl, it's all about helping kids get the most out of their time in class.