Michigan has set an ambitious long-term strategy.
It aims to be a top 10 education state in 10 years. However, the state does not explain how it will determine the other states among the top 10. The state commits to using data to drive resources and provide a focus for continuous improvement. It prioritizes reducing the impact of high-risk factors, and it seeks to provide a quality education to all students. Including these priorities as a part of the state’s long-term goals is appropriate.
However, Michigan’s specific interim targets may not be aligned to this long-term vision.
It sets a goal of having 75 percent of schools and 75 percent of student subgroups reaching the 75th percentile rate in English, math, science, and social studies by the year 2024-25. Since the state does not include any data on past progress, there is no context to assess how these goals were established and whether they are ambitious and achievable.
Michigan’s 10-year strategy is an appropriate timeline.
However, there is some question around the rigor and ambitiousness of this goal. There is no direct link between the state’s 75-75-75 goal for all children and its stated goal of being among the top 10 states. Based on Michigan’s current data, less than half of students will be proficient in math in seven years. Furthermore, the plan does not break out its goals by students with disabilities, English learners, or any other subgroups, which ESSA requires.
In terms of making a next draft stronger, Michigan may consider better defining what top 10 means and how the state will improve all educational opportunities to reach this goal.