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Officials: New DPS "innovative" programs an act of the faith in the future

DPSCD Superintendent Alycia Meriweather and district staff announce new schools programs in March 2016.
Sarah Cwiek
Michigan Radio
Alycia Meriweather announces the district's new offerings at Detroit's Cooke Elementary School.

The Detroit Public Schools is planning a dozen “innovative” new school programsfor the fall.

They include Montessori programs, an Arabic dual language immersion school, expanded Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) offerings, new programs for English language learners, and more opportunities for outdoor experience and “place-based education,” among other things.

The ideas were chosen from three dozen proposals submitted by DPS educators, says interim superintendent Alycia Meriweather.

Meriweather says the programs are an act of faith in DPS, and proof the district has both “capacity and intellect” and the intent of “revolutionizing” itself.

“I want to be clear that we’re announcing this today really as an additional piece of evidence for why people should believe and invest in Detroit Public Schools,” Meriweather said.

DPS needs a major state investment just to keep its doors open next school year. State lawmakers are squabbling over very different bills passed by the House and Senate.

In the meantime, Meriweather says the district will go on laying the groundwork for the future.

“DPS needs funding to go beyond June 30. What is the alternative to that? That’s unacceptable to me,” she said.

Sarah Cwiek joined Michigan Public in October 2009. As our Detroit reporter, she is helping us expand our coverage of the economy, politics, and culture in and around the city of Detroit.
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