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      Upper Peninsula school district awarded state grant

      A school district in the Copper Country could possibly receive over $60,000 from the State of Michigan to support the cost of consolidating services.

      The Copper Country ISD is one of several districts that will be receiving grant money from $10 million of state funds set aside to aid districts in consolidations.

      "To help develop more efficient operations of school districts, either entire district consolidations or a consolidation of their services is being recognized as a very effective strategy," said State Superintendent Mike Flanagan. "These grants reward those districts and school leaders who have shown the vision to take on these courageous tasks."

      The Michigan Department of Education received 51 grant applications, but the law, signed by Governor Rick Snyder, only provides for seven competitive grants. The MDE reviewed, rated, and rewarded applicants that demonstrated the most efficient and effective consolidation efforts.

      "Entire consolidation of school districts sometimes can be controversial and emotional endeavors," Flanagan added. "I applaud those communities that consolidated and the education leaders in those communities for working together and building positive coalitions to bring about these important changes."

      Grant Awards:

      Washtenaw ISD (Willow Run-Ypsilanti consolidation) - $6,561,200West Shore ESD (consolidation of two ISDs) - $1,950,844Mason County Eastern Schools (consolidation with Free Soil) - $183,226Charlevoix-Emmet ISD (Business Services/Software) - $25,327Calhoun ISD (Technology/Software System) - $788,208Copper Country ISD (Business Services) - $60,567Kalamazoo RESA (Business Services/Software) - $430,628