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New emergency managers for Highland Park & Muskegon Heights schools

Steve Carmody
Michigan Radio

New emergency managers have been picked to run the Highland Park and Muskegon Heights school districts.   

Steve Schiller will take over as emergency manager at Muskegon Heights, where he worked as a teacher and administrator for 30 years. During the last few years, he’s worked as a consultant for other emergency managers.

Current Pontiac schools consultant Don Weatherspoon will become the manager for Highland Park Schools. 

Both appointments are effective Wednesday. 

Both districts have been under state control since 2012.  

Since October, 2013, Gregory Weatherspoon – Don's brother – has been the emergency manager for both districts.   

Terry Stanton is a Treasury Department spokesman.  

He says Gregory Weatherspoon’s departure should not be seen as negatively reflecting on his tenure.

“Obviously, each was a challenge in and of itself,” says Stanton, “He did a lot of heavy lifting in those two districts.”

Stanton says both districts have substantially reduced their budget deficits.

“Obviously that’s goal number one,” says Stanton.

In 2012, the Highland Park school district’s budget deficit was $12 million. The latest data shows the deficit is down to less than $8 million.

The Muskegon Heights district budget deficit is down to about $1 million. That’s down from $11.9 million in 2012.  

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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