MI Educators: 'School of Choice' is about more than one week

LANSING, MI. (WILX) - In this edition of Schools Rule, WILX News 10 is talking about School of Choice. Michigan celebrated National School of Choice Week and it's a chance to let students choose how they get their schooling.

Michigan educators celebrate 'National School of Choice Week'

National School of Choice Week also lets educators and schools present their options to state legislators but Michigan educators say 'School of Choice' is about more than just one week.

"Everybody has those different needs to fit their family, their family's values and beliefs," said Amy Dunlap, who is on the Planning Committee for School of Choice and a teacher with Michigan Connections Academy.

Ten different schools set up booths at the Michigan Capitol to present their options to families and legislators.

"We build relationships the more that we're down here and we get to know the legislators," said Dunlap. "It's good to remind them that we're here and remind them that this is important to us, and just to continue to build those impact relationships to move School of Choice forward."

School of Choice allows a student and their family decide how they get their education.

“One-size-fits all doesn't work for everybody," said Dunlap.

For some, that means traditional schooling and for others, it can mean getting their lessons online.

"For me personally as an educator, it's important because I wanted to find that fit," explained Dunlap. "When I went to school I thought of teaching as, being able to work with students. In every other setting that I was in, I wasn't able to fulfill that need that I needed as an educator. In my setting that I'm in now, I'm able to do that because we can individualize to every student, which is so important."

Being able to choose their schooling options can be critical for students. Dunlap explained how for one student, School of Choice is literally a life or death situation.

"He has major medical needs," explained Dunlap. "If he goes into a traditional classroom he's going to come in contact with germs that he could not survive from. So for him, in order to get a quality education, he needs that option like our school."

Dunlap and her board are already planning for next year's School of Choice Week. There's more information on the overall initiative, here.

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