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Board of Education Anticipates Legislation will Change Traditional School Funding Structure

The Birmingham Board of Education discussed the potential changes during their Tuesday meeting.

The Birmingham Board of Education learned Tuesday that big changes may be coming to the way schools are funded. 

In his superintendent's report, given during the board's regular meeting, Dr. Daniel Nerad directed the board's attention to a piece of legislation he believes may be approved by the Michigan legislature in early 2013.

Though he said he was unclear of all of the clauses and circumstances surrounding the proposal, he believed that the school-centered funding structure to which schools have become accustomed would be replaced with a student-funding structure. The funding associated with the legislation could be put in place as early as February 2013.

"Choice everywhere, choice in every form," Nerad said. 

He said the legislation would be "removing barriers" and essentially "removing distinction between school districts", something that Birmingham has worked very hard to establish. There would be a heavier focus on on-line learning and techniques that are specific to students' needs.

Before the legislation passes, a more complete assessment of schools' facility capacities and technology needs to be conducted.

"Everyone needs to pay attention to what's going on here," said trustee Robert Lawrence. "It could be dramatic."

The trustees of various school districts will come together and discuss the legislation early next month.

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