Long-term fixes to Michigan school funding unlikely this year

Friday, May 2, 2014

At DeWitt Junior High, it’s not uncommon to see kids wearing trendy North Face jackets and the coolest gym shoes as they tromp around campus, nestled in this bedroom community just north of Lansing’s vaulted halls of power. They come from middle-income families for the most part.

So when the school district last fall promoted BYOD – bring your own device – eighth-grader Rheanna Wey arrived with an iPad, which she’d paid for with babysitting money two years ago. The iPad isn't new, but it’s faster than the district’s desktops, half of which are seven years old.

Indeed, most DeWitt families can afford speedy, useful technology – the tablets, laptops and smart phones that have become essential in educational settings. Good thing, because the school district cannot, even though the median income in DeWitt is $75,848.

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