Michigan ranks as one of the worst states in education

Published: Feb. 1, 2017 at 11:44 AM EST
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Some parents in Michigan aren't pleased with where their state's schools rank.

"I have a lot of mistrust as to how the schools are run and the standards that they have to meet that they're not meeting," says Jennifer Meyers.

Jennifer Meyers has two kids that she sends to public school, and she's felt some schools have been bad.

"She was getting A's for showing up," describes Meyers about her daughters previous school, "versus where we live now, I live in Eaton Rapids, and she's being challenged, she's working hard, and I know she's getting the better education, so it depends on where you're at."

MSU professor William Schmidt says generally that's true across Michigan.

"We are, I think, way toward the bottom of states in terms of the distribution, I think it was something like 40th out of 50 states."

He says the biggest issues are curriculum and teachers. The state needs to implement challenging curriculums that will be demanding for students, and it needs the best teachers to do it.

But as new curriculums are implemented, Schmidt argues the state will need to invest in training current teachers on the rigorous new programs.

"What we have is a situation where the teachers need to have professional development, and the state needs to provide the moneys to do that."

As long as Michigan is willing to commit to education, Schmidt is optimistic about the future.

"There's nothing wrong with our kids, I think it's we have to take education seriously."