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Muskegon Heights elected school board gives New Paradigm one month to fix mess

Daniel Boothe
Daniel Boothe

Staffing shortages have plagued the district so far this year, while being millions in debt

With frustrations in the Muskegon Heights Public School district reaching a boiling point----the local, elected Board of Education this week accused the district’s management company of breaching its contract---while giving the firm a month’s time to come up with a solution.

So far, the school year at Muskegon Heights Public Schools has been overshadowed by extreme staffing shortages, heated Board of Education meetings, and protests by parents who are angry over how the district is being managed.

At the center of the issue is the fact the district is over $30 million dollars in debt, and the elected board has lost its authority to govern itself. That responsibility, and the day-to-day operations including hiring staff, has been outsourced to New Paradigm for Education, an appointed academy board that operates out of Detroit.

At several meetings this year, a number of parents, teachers and administrative staff have questioned whether New Paradigm for Education has the district’s best interests at heart, and whether it can effectively run the district from the east side of the state.

WGVU has reached out to New Paradigm several times for comment, at the time of this report, phone calls were not returned.

Nor was a representative of New Paradigm present at the Elected Board of Education’s meeting Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the Elected Board Wednesday voted to give New Paradigm one month to come up with a solution to the district’s woes, as well as communicate that plan in a future meeting.