Program: State programs                             

 

Appropriation:

Special Revenue Funds:

$9,094,300

 

GF/GP:

$11,150,000

 

Total:

$20,244,300[4]

 

Program Description:


This appropriation subsidizes several state programs.  During the 2003 fiscal year grants will be distributed to the following programs:

 

Driver Education

$7,600,000

Motorcycle Safety Education

$1,200,000

Off-Road Vehicle Safety Training Grant

$294,300

National Board Certification Grant

$100,000

School Readiness Grants

$11,050,000

 

The first three grants are self-explanatory.  The National Board Certification Grant pays 50 percent of the fees for teachers who wish to be certified by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.  The School Readiness Grants are given to private organizations to help support pre-Kindergarten education for children.               

 

Recommended Action:


The three state-run vehicle education programs should be eliminated.  Individuals who require vehicle training should pay for such programs themselves.  Indeed, this is already being done.[5]

 

The National Board Certification grant program should also be eliminated.  There is little evidence that certification by the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards is effective in raising student achievement.[6] However, if teachers desire such certification they are free acquire it using their own resources.  Many different professionals seek certification or board membership and are required to pay from their own funds.  There is no reason to treat teaching professionals any differently than economists, accountants, or financial planning professionals.

 

The school readiness grants should be eliminated also.  Parents have a clear incentive — the academic success of their child — to ready their children for formal education.  Supplemental assistance, if necessary, should be provided and funded by local community organizations.  Savings: $20,244,300.

 

Programs to be Transferred to Education Department

 

Program: Michigan merit award board/MEAP administration

 

Appropriation:

Federal Funds:

$10,698,800

 

Special Revenue Funds:

$18,128,500

 

Total:

$28,827,300[7]

Program Description:

The Michigan Department of Treasury administers the program through which Michigan students receive scholarship money for scoring well on the Michigan Education Assessment Program achievement test. 

Recommended Action:

This program should be transferred back to the Department of Education.  There is little reason for the MEAP test and the accompanying scholarship program to be in the Department of Treasury.  Transfer:  $28,827,300.