Changes in the Law that Impact Michigan Schools and Students

Governor Gretchen Whitmer recently signed several bills into law, including a few that focus on education. Below are three of the newer laws that affect Michigan students in the near future.

Financial Literacy Course

House Bill 5190 updates Michigan’s high school curriculum to include a financial literacy course for the first time in state history. The legislation adds a half-credit personal finance course as a high school graduation credit, starting with ninth-graders in 2024.

The course requirement fulfills a half-credit of the four-credit math requirement, the two-credit language other than the English requirement, or the one-credit visual, performing, or applied arts requirement. The course could also be part of an approved technical education program.

Informational packets regarding post-graduation opportunities

Governor Whitmer also signed House Bill 4953 into law recently. The law amends the Revised School Code to require that the Department of Education (MDE) develop or update informational packets concerning post-graduation opportunities. The packets are to be distributed to each pupil enrolled in grades 8-12 in all Michigan public school districts, intermediate school districts, public school academies, and nonpublic schools. By Aug. 1, 2022, and each subsequent August 1, the MDE would have to post the informational packet on its website.

Informational packets would include the following:

  • Information regarding dual enrollment opportunities, early/middle college programs, and testing centers that administer advanced placement or college-level examination program examinations;
  • Information regarding the average tuition and average fees associated with the attendance at each public university and community college in Michigan for the immediately preceding calendar year;
  • The six-year graduation rate for each public university and community college in Michigan;
  • Information regarding the average amount of student loans incurred by individuals attending a postsecondary institution in Michigan;
  • A list of at least 10 postsecondary vocational training opportunities for individuals who had been awarded a high school diploma or had been granted a high school equivalency certificate;
  • A list of at least 20 of the most in-demand occupations in Michigan as determined by MDE for the immediately preceding calendar year;
  • A list of public and private resources designed to assist pupils and the parents and legal guardians of pupils in navigating post-secondary education;
  • A list of public-service opportunities for high school graduates; and
  • Information regarding any postsecondary training and tuition assistance available to those who choose a career in public service.

Curriculum focused on free enterprise and entrepreneurship

House Bill 4074 encourages Michigan school districts and public school academies to implement curriculum regarding free enterprise and entrepreneurship into social studies classes for grades 9 through 12 beginning with the 2023-2024 school year.

A program of instruction would have to be project-based and could provide instruction on any of the following subjects:

  • Business vocabulary, including entrepreneurship, free enterprise, business finance, goods and services, and innovation;
  • Entrepreneurs (meaning an individual who organizes and operates a business or businesses and takes on greater than normal financial risks to do so) from Michigan and around the world;
  • Action activities, including setting short-term and long-term goals;
  • Business basics, including taxes for businesses and corporations, essential skills for business owners, and product- and service-based business ideas; and
  • Creating a student project-based business plan.

Help is available

The municipal attorneys at O’Reilly Rancilio are available to assist school districts with legal matters. For more information, call 586-726-1000 or visit our website.

Categories: Municipal