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AG Nessel planning to file brief in support of plaintiffs in suit against state

Cheyna Roth

Attorney General Dana Nessel is planning to file a brief "advocating for a fundamental right to an adequate education" in support of Detroit students in a lawsuitfiled in 2016 against the state of Michigan.

The lawsuit alleges that students in Detroit were denied access to literacy because of the state's negligence of Detroit schools. Nessel’s communications director, Kelly Rossman-McKinney, says Nessel is keeping her options open.

"She's retaining her options but did not choose to continue to have her name affiliated with it," says Rossman-McKinney. "So the attorney general's office itself continues to represent the state, the Michigan Department of Education and a majority of the Board of Education."


Tiffany Brown, spokeswoman for Governor Gretchen Whitmer, says in a statement that Whitmer "absolutely stands by her belief that every child in the state has a birth right to a great education/literacy."

"The Governor’s Office signed onto the first part of the lawsuit only, which argues that the State of Michigan is no longer a proper party to the lawsuit due to changed circumstances and the fact that local control has been restored,” she says.

Brown says Whitmer's proposed budget "will make the biggest investment in public school operations in a generation of kids, including more than $22 million for Detroit Public Schools."

"Her budget will allow us to do things like triple the number of literacy coaches in Michigan, improve buildings and facilities, and help schools raise teacher pay, reduce class sizes, and upgrade technology. The governor’s budget will also provide more funding for low-income and at-risk children and help them get on paths to good-paying jobs.”


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