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NCLB: A Policy in Limbo --

A Look Backward, a Look Forward

April 2 2012
12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Kellogg Center, MSU


No Child Left Behind (NCLB), a 2002 reauthorization of the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), called for every child in the United States to be proficient in reading and math by 2014. As the federal policy governing elementary and secondary education for nearly a decade, NCLB has influenced every realm of educational policy and public education practice and made common such terms “highly qualified teachers” and “high stakes testing.” Yet, NCLB has not been reauthorized leaving both the policy and the state of public education in limbo.

We are currently in a phase where states are allowed to receive federal waivers from the requirements of NCLB. There are many who are critical of this process, however, the gridlock in Washington, D.C. leaves little in the way of alternatives.

In this session, we will consider the history of NCLB both federally and locally as well as its current status and possible future outcomes. By focusing on NCLB, we will engage in discussions that draw upon many of the learning objectives from our year together as EPFP fellows to reflect on the reach and limitations of federal educational policy.

EPFP Learning Team Members:
Brian Broderick
Marcia Docks
Bob Krusky
Vanessa Garry
Michelle Purdy


Resource People
Dr. Edward D. Roeber, Adjunct Professor of Education, Measurement, and Quantitative Methods, College of Education, Michigan State University
Roeber bio sketch


The Death and Life of the Great American School System: How Testing and Choice are Undermining Education by Diane Ravitch
*Chapter 1: What I Learned About School Reform
*Chapter 2: Hijacked! How the Standards Movement Turned Into A Testing Movement
“Bringing Flexibility and Focus to Education Law: Looking Back and Moving Forward” U.S. Department of Education
Questions to consider for the Diane Ravitch reading

How Research Impacts Education Policy

March 19 2012
3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Kellogg Center, MSU

Research is important to educators and policy makers.  Research can help improve instructional practice and expand knowledge if used appropriately. In an age where political “high stakes” test scores have become a normative factor in determining the success or failure of educational systems, research and the data that are produced from it have impacted educational policy in positive and negative ways. The focus of this session is to discuss how research has impacted the passage of SB 618, Public Act 277 of 2011, expanding charter schools.

EPFP Learning Team Members:
Anupam Chugh
Jane Fernandez
Tamalon Meeks
Gloria Suggitt


Resource People
Dr. James N. Goenner, National Charter Schools Institute

Jim Goenner serves as President & CEO of the National Charter Schools Institute, a non-profit organization founded in collaboration with Central Michigan University to strengthen the development and performance of the charter schools sector in Michigan and across the nation.

Jim joined the charter schools movement in 1995, and has played a prominent role in its development ever since. In 2010, Jim’s pioneering efforts and commitment to excellence earned him an induction into the National Charter Schools Hall of Fame. Prior to joining the Institute, Jim served as the Executive Director of The Center for Charter Schools at Central Michigan University, where he led the first and largest university authorizer of charter public schools in the nation.  Under Jim’s leadership, CMU became known as the “gold standard” for charter school authorizing, earning recognition from both the U.S. and Michigan Departments of Education.

Jim currently serves on the board of directors of the Charter Schools Development Corporation. He helped found the National Association of Charter School Authorizers and chaired its board of directors (2007-2010). He also helped found and chaired the board of directors of the Michigan Council of Charter School Authorizers (2002-2010), and served as the first President of the Michigan Association of Public School Academies (1996-1998), which continues to serve as the unified voice of Michigan’s charter schools movement.

Jim has testified before numerous policymaking bodies, including the United States Congress, and was invited by the U.S. Department of Education to serve on the founding advisory board of the National Charter Schools Resource Center.  He has received gubernatorial appointments from Governors John Engler and Jennifer Granholm. He earned his doctorate in educational administration from Michigan State University and has authored a number of articles, including “Charter Schools: Revitalizing Public Education,” which appeared in Phi Delta Kappan.

Jim and his wife, Theresa, have seven children.


Networking with a Purpose

May 7 2012
12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Kellogg Center, MSU

In this session, participants will hear from two expert networkers and leave knowing how to be a part of a professional network where they are an active participant and have an impact on Educational Policy.

EPFP Learning Team Members:
Mary Head
Tammy Maginity
David Young


Resource People

Michele Corey, Vice President for Programs, Michigan's Children

Michele Robotham Corey (EPFP 1993-94) is the Vice President for Programs at Michigan's Children, a child advocacy organization that acts as a voice for children. In that capacity, Ms. Corey is responsible for increasing the level of awareness of children's issues around the state; and creating opportunities for local child advocates and coalitions to communicate effectively with local- and state-level policy-makers. She has extensive experience in presenting data and policy information to a wide variety of audiences throughout Michigan, develops issue analyses and related publications for distribution throughout Michigan, and works with other organizations in developing and implementing cradle to career advocacy strategies. 

Ms. Corey is currently responsible for a statewide dropout and recovery initiative focused on producing multiple pathways to graduation by growing better data about young people and the systems that serve them, providing better educational options for young people, and building public support for policy and practice that sustain those options. She also helps policy makers and local communities use the information available through the Kids Count project to improve planning and decision-making about children's services.

Thomas White, Associate Director for Labor Relations, Michigan Association of School Boards

Tom White has worked his entire career in the area of education management: Tom was the Executive Director of the Michigan School Business Officials for 11 years. He retired from that position in December of 2008 and has operated a successful consulting business since then in the areas of management, marketing and labor relations.

Before his job at MSBO, Tom spent 9 years as the Director of Government Relations for the Michigan Association of School Boards from 1989 to 1998. He started his career as a labor negotiator for school boards in Michigan and Oregon, which he did for 10 years.

Since Tom’s retirement from MSBO in 2008 he has served as a consultant to the Confucius Institute at MSU, and is now the Associate Director for Labor Relations at the MASB. Tom has been on the Clinton Regional Education Service Agency Board of Education for 14 years, serving as its president for the past two years. Tom has a master’s degree in labor and industrial relations and a bachelor’s of science in multidisciplinary social science, both from Michigan State University.


Stakeholder Engagement: Moving Michigan Toward a Knowledge Economy


Commencement Reflections, Pinkalicious, and Symphonic Thinking in the Conceptual Age

March 21, 2011
12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Kellogg Center, MSU

Please join us for a Commencement Celebration of the 2020 Graduating Class of the Whole New Mind (WNM) Academy on Monday, March 21 at the Kellogg Center.  The WNM Academy has successfully prepared graduates to thrive in the conceptual age and has been called upon by the State to host a Best Practices Summit to share our results with other schools around Michigan.

In preparation for the Michigan Summit, guests at the WNM Commencement Celebration will travel back to the year 2011.  Panelists will share ideas emerging in 2011 from the work across numerous stakeholder groups. Their ideas shaped what Michigan needed to do to move education policy (and school reform) forward to prepare learners for the knowledge economy and conceptual age.  Following the discussion,  participation in stakeholder groups will help us to tell the story of how this transformation occurred.

EPFP Learning Team Members:
Alison Arnold
Leah Breen
Ben Botwinski
Monica Butler
Cameron Clark
Sara Lurie
Henry McClendon
Christopher Plum
Resource People
Sharlonda Marie Buckman,  Executive Director, Detroit Parent Network
Jeff Hupp, Facebook
Jeff Williams, Chief Executive Officer, Public Sector Consultants
Olivia Johnson, Student, Plymouth Educational Center
Deavonte Grier, Student, Plymouth Educational Center
Jessie Kilgore, Superintendent. Plymouth Educational Center
Carlos Johnson, Parent Consultant, Image of Success

  • A Whole New Mind EPFP 2011 Discussion Guide (PDF)
  • Michigan's Defining Moment 10,000 Voices to Transform Our State: The Center for Michigan (PDF)
  • Mind Map Visual of EPFP Stakeholder Learning Team March 21, 2011 Session (PDF)
  • Creating a Picture-Learning Community Guide for Stakeholder Group Exercise (PDF)

The Role of Advocacy in Shaping Public Opinion

January 24, 2011
12:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Kellogg Center, MSU

This session will examine how public policy is shaped by focus group research, opinion polling, issue management, image consulting and creative marketing, and how organizations, business and political leaders use this information in the policy debate. The Fellows will have an opportunity to reflect on the work of various organizations that serve as advocates at the local, state and national levels and their impact on the policy making process.  The second part of the program agenda is designed to advance the development of this year's EPFP Learning Teams.


Resource Person:

Mr. Ed Sarpolus

Founder and Director

Target Insyght
P.O. Box 80505

Lansing, MI  48908-0505

(517) 927-9776

Ed Sarpolus, founder and director of Target Insyght is recognized as one of Michigan’s most notable pollsters, analysts and strategists. Ed is a strategist, entrepreneurial thinker and deal-maker who has had great success crafting and implementing strategies to influence legislation, political action and public policy discussions in Michigan, throughout the U.S., Europe and the Pacific Rim.  From 2008-10 he served as the Director of Government Affairs for the Michigan Education Association where he was the lead advocate for the advancement of educational initiatives across the state.  From 1985-2008 Ed was Vice President of EPIC/MRA, a leading provider of market survey and strategic consulting research services and one of the most quoted sources of survey research in Michigan. His client list includes the Detroit Free Press, the Lansing State Journal, Oakland Press, the Flint Journal, as well as most television news outlets in Michigan, including WXYZ- ABC TV-7 in Detroit, ABC TV-12 in Flint, WOOD TV-8 in Grand Rapids, TV-5 in Saginaw, WLNS TV-6 in Lansing and WILX TV-10, also in Lansing.  Ed Sarpolus has appeared as a commentator on PBS, CNN World News, Inside Politics-CNN, MSNBC, Nightline, ABC and NBC News. He has also been regularly interviewed by Michigan radio stations and NPR, quoted in most major national publications including Time, U.S. News and World Report, Business Week, the Washington Post, New York Times, Boston Globe and the National Journal. His research results and commentary have also been a regular contributor to the Polling Report, The Hotline, and Congress Daily. Because of his extensive experience on international trade issues, Mr. Sarpolus has been a featured speaker for groups such as the Council on Foreign Relations and Consumers for World Trade.

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