Michigan Business Leaders for Education Excellence Recognizes High-Performing Schools

PRNewswire
LANSING, Mich.
May 23, 2002

The Michigan Business Leaders for Education Excellence (MBLEE) today released a Profile of Achievement and School Success (PASS) which recognizes Michigan's high performing elementary and middle schools. MBLEE is a program of the Michigan Chamber Foundation.

PASS identifies elementary and middle schools where 75 percent or more of the students scored at the proficient level or better over the last two years on all areas of the Michigan Educational Assessment Program (MEAP) test, excluding social studies. Of the 2,128 elementary schools in Michigan, 436 met the PASS standard. Of the 962 middle schools in Michigan, 98 met the PASS standard. Almost every school district in Michigan had at least one school recognized by PASS.

"MBLEE is proud to recognize the academic success that each of these schools achieved," said Dave Whitwam, CEO of Whirlpool Corporation and Chairman of MBLEE. "PASS demonstrates that schools in every Michigan school district are capable of attaining high academic standards. We hope these schools will be models for those not included in PASS to learn how to make its students successful."

"With the passage of the recent 'No Child Left Behind Act' at the federal level, Michigan schools are required to have all students meeting or exceeding state standards by 2015," said Jim Sandy, MBLEE Director. "PASS provides a benchmark to show current achievement levels and how much improvement is required in the next 12 years to achieve that goal."

PASS was developed to publicly recognize those schools that successfully achieved high academic performance by consistently meeting or exceeding state standards. PASS was also created as an alternative to the absence of a state accreditation system to inform the public, parent and business community of local school performance.

"We believe that PASS is a good first step in a new era of accountability," said Whitwam. "We do not want Michigan to accept mediocre standards or continue to operate at low levels of proficiency. 'No Child Left Behind' will hold Michigan schools accountable if 100 percent of our students are not meeting state standards."

"Michigan must focus on raising the academic performance of all of Michigan's students," said Jim Barrett, President & CEO of the Michigan Chamber of Commerce. "We want all children to be able to achieve at higher levels and to receive the kind of education that will help them be successful at whatever endeavor they may pursue. The PASS report provides a call to action for the public, parents and business community to demand better performance from our schools."

The PASS report is available exclusively on the Internet through an interactive website at http://www.michamber.com/ . PASS data was compiled by Dr. Michael Williamson, former Assistant Superintendent of Public Instruction for the Michigan Department of Education.

The Michigan Business Leaders for Education Excellence provides leadership to help ensure that all students have a quality, world-class education, resulting in high achievement levels and a prepared, skilled workforce. MBLEE's members include: DaimlerChrysler; Dow Chemical Co.; Ford Motor Co.; General Motors Corp.; Mead Paper Co.; Michigan Chamber of Commerce; Pharmacia Corp.; State Farm Insurance Cos.; Steelcase Inc.; the University of Michigan; Whirlpool Corp.; and representatives from the Office of the Governor, the Michigan Department of Education, and the Michigan Department of Career Development.

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SOURCE: Michigan Chamber Foundation

Contact: Jim Sandy of Michigan Chamber Foundation, +1-517-371-2100

Website: http://www.michamber.com/


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