Lansing School District Pushes For Promise Zone

By: Tiffany Teasley Email
By: Tiffany Teasley Email

It's a promise that the Lansing School District is longing to keep.

"We're very excited about the announcement that we're going to be making Monday night, which is, we are applying to become one of the first 10, under this law, the first 10 "Promise Zones" in Michigan, that would provide two years of free Community College education for every student in Lansing," said Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero.

And the Lansing School District has hit the ground running to submit Lansing's application to be a part of the promise.

"We're already out of the gate on this, I have directed the Superintendent and the board has been informed that he has made the applications, he has submitted the paperwork , we've been advised that we are the first district to have gotten this far in the process," said Lansing School Board President Hugh Clarke, Jr.

The legislation is likened to the Kalamazoo Promise signed in November 2005, and has since garnered increased high school graduation rates and college going rates.

"We've grown by 1500 children so that certainly helped the school district out from the perspective of our revenue base, its become a big magnet for the school district, a tremendous magnet, because they heard about "the promise," and they thought it was such a neat program and such a wonderful opportunity for their children," said Dr. Michael F. Rice, Superintendent of Kalamazoo Public Schools.

"Their school district is in demand, people are moving to Kalamazoo, Why? Because they know if they stay in Kalamazoo, their kids get a college education," Bernero said.

An education Lansing is waiting first in line to promise its residents.

"We are willing to do whatever it takes to help our kids learn and succeed post K-12, so this is just one other step that we are certainly proud to be a part of," Clarke said.

The Lansing School District will hold a public hearing February 12 to provide more information about the "Promise Zone" legislation and how the community can support it.


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