TCAPS

St. Joseph Public Schools

Northern Michigan’s largest school district is one step closer to hiring a new superintendent. On Monday, the board for Traverse City Area Public Schools voted unanimously for Ann Cardon to proceed to the final round.

Cardon has 10 years of superintendent experience and is the current head of St. Joseph Public Schools downstate.

"I like the fact that she’s basically done everything, teacher, principal, leader and she’s been involved with finance and with unions," TCAPS Board Member Doris Ellery says.

Teen parents in Grand Traverse County
Taylor Wizner

 

As teen pregnancy rates fall across the country, Grand Traverse County is struggling to bring them down. A new program in Traverse City may help; it’s restructured and expanded to include dads.

Morgan Springer

Traverse City Area Public Schools could catch a $700,000 break related to a review of its homeschool program.

The Michigan Department of Education is currently reviewing that homeschool program, the Northern Michigan Partnership, to see if TCAPS collected too much money per students. If that’s what they determine, they could ask the district to pay roughly $700,000 back to the state.

But a spending package passed by the legislature early Friday morning included grant money to cover that cost.

David Cassleman

The head of Traverse City schools has announced he will leave the district. TCAPS Superintendent Paul Soma says he’ll retire from the position summer 2019.

Soma made the announcement in a letter to the TCAPS community Thursday. He expressed gratitude for the 17 years he’s spent with the school district.

"Of course, this has not been an easy decision," Soma wrote in the letter. "Please know that this decision comes after much reflection, deliberation and consultation."

David Cassleman

The superintendent of Traverse City schools was praised for his leadership last night. The Traverse City Area Public Schools board rated Paul Soma “highly effective” during his annual evaluation.

The evaluation lasted about two hours and happened behind closed doors. No one from the public was there when the TCAPS board came out of closed session and read aloud the superintendent's top marks. Soma scored four - the highest possible score - in almost every category, including student growth and community and staff relations. His final score was 3.885 or 97 percent, which corresponds with a rating of "highly effective."


Morgan Springer

Voters mostly rejected a group of candidates campaigning as a team for the Traverse City school board. Team 5 TCAPS candidates ran on a similar platform, calling for more transparency and accountability in the district, but only one of the five candidates – Erica Moon Mohr – was elected Tuesday.

Morgan Springer

The leader of Traverse City’s school district has said he was "blindsided" when he found out last week the state might take back money from a homeschool program. But other sources indicate TCAPS Superintendent Paul Soma knew it was a possibility for months. 


Morgan Springer

At a forum Thursday night, candidates for the Traverse City school board were asked if the election was a referendum on district Superintendent Paul Soma. The Traverse City Area Public Schools superintendent has been under criticism for potential financial issues relating to the district's homeschool program and allegations of bullying

Max Johnston

The Michigan Department of Education says Traverse City Area Public Schools owes more than $700,000 for overpayment last year. 

The demand for the repayment stems from allegations that TCAPS misreported student enrollment numbers for the Northern Michigan Partnership, a program that combines online learning and classes at the TCAPS building in Interlochen.

Morgan Springer

The Board of Education for Traverse Area Public Schools could look very different in January. Five of its seven seats are up for grabs.

David Cassleman

Traverse City school officials have released to the public an investigation into the district’s superintendent.

David Cassleman

Traverse City school officials have cleared the superintendent of allegations of illegal gender discrimination.

The board of Traverse City Area Public Schools voted unanimously Monday night to accept the findings made in an investigative report. In March, the board hired a firm to look into claims that Superintendent Paul Soma bullied female principals.

Child homelessness rates high in northern Michigan

Apr 11, 2018
University of Michigan

Michigan has one of the largest populations of homeless students in the United States, according to new research from the University of Michigan. Communities in northern Michigan have some of the highest rates of child homelessness in the entire state. 

 


The Old Mission Peninsula School will have new leadership starting this fall. The elementary school will no longer be a part of Traverse City Area Public Schools; it will become a public charter school authorized by Grand Valley State University.

Dena Schweitzer has been named Director of Academics there. She has worked as a speech pathologist in local public schools for more than 25 years. 

Morgan Springer

The superintendent of northern Michigan’s largest school district will keep his job. The board of Traverse City Area Public Schools voted unanimously to keep Superintendent Paul Soma during his annual performance evaluation Monday.

More than 60 people showed up for an emotional school board meeting in Traverse City Area Public Schools district Saturday. Most people showed up in support of Superintendent Paul Soma.

David Cassleman

Updated March 9, 2018 at 4 p.m.

A letter from Traverse City school administrators alleges the district superintendent bullies and intimidates female principals.

Students spin, balance, jump and walk at different stations in the gym at Central Grade School in Traverse City. Each movement is designed to help train the brain to read better.
Morgan Springer

 

A growing body of research says more physically active kids do better in school. But, across the country, time for gym class and recess has been replaced with more sedentary time in classrooms. Traverse City Central Grade School is doing the opposite though, giving kids more exercise to help boost their reading scores.

Morgan Springer

The pressure is on for schools to improve reading scores in Michigan. Last fall, the state legislature passed the third-grade reading bill. The bill goes into effect in two years and will require schools to hold back third-graders who are not proficient readers, with a few exceptions.

David Cassleman

Traverse City school officials have voted to cut Spanish class for most elementary school students in a move that the district says will save $400,000.

The board of education for Traverse City Area Pubic Schools met Monday night to vote on the proposal. The board also approved sunsetting the International Baccalaureate program at the middle school level. 

David Cassleman

Spanish class would be all but eliminated from Traverse City elementary schools under a budget recommendation made by the district superintendent’s office Monday night.

Traverse City West basketball coach dies suddenly

Feb 22, 2017
Photo courtesy of Gary D. Smith at Picture This.

The varsity girls basketball coach at Traverse City West High School has died, school officials confirmed on Wednesday. 

Mike Wilde coached a variety of sports in Traverse City Area Public Schools for more than 30 years, including basketball, baseball and football.

Morgan Springer

A school in Grand Traverse County has been working to turn things around. Blair Elementary School is a lower-performing school with a number of challenges. Last fall, IPR reported that the school significantly improved reading scores. Now the school is tackling behavioral issues.

Old Mission Peninsula School - TCAPS Facebook page

Updated January 24, 2017:  The TCAPS board approved the sale of Old Mission Peninsula School to the Old Mission Education Foundation Monday night.

An education foundation is poised to buy the Old Mission Peninsula School. Traverse City Area Public Schools reached a tentative agreement to sell the building to the Old Mission Peninsula Education Foundation for $1.1 million. The sale would go through in 2018.

Old Mission Peninsula School - TCAPS Facebook page

Update 12/12/16: The board for Traverse City Area Public Schools votes to redistrict Old Mission Peninsula, sending public schools students on the peninsula to Eastern Elementary School in the fall of 2018. At that time, TCAPS will stop running Old Mission Peninsula School.

Public school students on Old Mission Peninsula will likely go to Eastern Elementary School beginning in fall 2018. Officials for Traverse City Area Public Schools could decide Monday whether to formally redistrict those students to Eastern Elementary School.

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