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After report, Muskegon Heights teachers get Michigan certificates, substitute permits

Lindsey Smith
Michigan Radio

Teachers in the new charter school district in Muskegon Heights have now obtained certificates or permits that allow them to legally work in Michigan classrooms.

This week Michigan Radio reportedthe state's first all-charter public school district had at least eight teachers who worked, in some case for months, without a valid Michigan teaching certificate or permit. It’s against state law to do that.

Now, public records show those who were still teaching at Muskegon Heights without proper certificates managed to get them this week. Most obtained teacher certificates. Two others obtained substitute permits.

The school district’s emergency financial manager hired charter school company Mosaica Education to run Muskegon Heights schools for five years. The emergency manager declined to comment.

Mosaica Education Regional Vice President Alena Zachery-Ross declined an interview, but issued this written statement:

“As stated earlier, we knew that all of our Muskegon Heights Public School Academy System teachers were highly qualified and were always confident that they would receive their certification. We have a great group of teachers teaching our kids.”

Michigan’s Department of Education expects it'll take a few months to investigate the district. MDE could issue fines in the case.

Lindsey Smith helps lead the station'sAmplify Team. She previously served as Michigan Public's Morning News Editor, Investigative Reporter and West Michigan Reporter.
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