The Cheap Shot I Never Forgot

By Brenda Ortega
MEA Editor

I remember in June 2013 when Republican lawmaker – now candidate for lieutenant governor – Lisa Posthumus Lyons stood on the floor of the state House of Representatives and derided school employees with an offensive animal metaphor to portray them as greedy and lazy.

A bill was under consideration to dissolve two financially struggling school districts in cities hard hit by job and population losses – Inkster and Buena Vista near Saginaw – and disperse those students to neighboring districts.

Parents and children were about to lose their community schools, and school employees were poised to lose their jobs. None of them got much compassion or understanding from Rep. Lyons, then chair of the House Education Committee.

Lyons was opposed to a Democratic-sponsored amendment, supported by MEA, to require the neighboring districts receiving the students to interview displaced school employees for job openings and pay them according to their years of experience if hired.

Latest 3% Victory Means More Interest for School Employees – If State Doesn’t Appeal

Last week, Judge Stephen Borrello of the Court of Claims ruled in favor of school employees seeking a higher interest rate for the 3% of their earnings illegally withheld by the state.  That could mean an extra check for school employees who had more than $550 million held during the seven-year legal case – if the state chooses not to appeal Borrello’s ruling in the next few weeks.