Sen. Marty Knollenberg
Sen. Marty Knollenberg

LANSING, Mich. — The state Senate approved a 14-bill package Thursday that would greatly reduce red tape for Michigan public school teachers and administrators.

Senate Bills 754-767 would eliminate unnecessary and redundant reporting requirements and streamline the reporting process. Michigan school districts are mandated to prepare and submit hundreds of reports to state and federal entities. These reports can be time-consuming and tedious to produce and are often redundant or even out-of-date by the time of submission.

“These bills eliminate the requirement of filling out countless reports to government bureaucracies and focus on keeping teacher and administrator attention in the classroom where it needs to be,” said Knollenberg, R-Troy. “Time has shown us that more government in schools is not always effective. Reorganizing the use of the resources to improve our education system instead of for filling out repetitive paperwork is common sense policy.”

The legislation has been praised statewide by education leaders as helping schools redirect their attention to the important task of educating students.

Education reporting requirements are not limited to the state’s education code — they litter Michigan law. Unfortunately, there is no published comprehensive index to easily locate all mandated reports. These reports are costly, often taking a great deal of staff time and resources.

“I was happy to join my colleagues in sponsoring these reforms,” Knollenberg said. “I have been told that some districts even hire a person whose only responsibility is to complete these reports. This action taken by the Senate today will redirect school resources toward educating our children.

“Teachers have very limited time in a day to accomplish all of their objectives. That time should be spent teaching our kids, not doing paperwork.”

In addition to Knollenberg, eleven other Republican senators are listed as sponsors of the legislative package.

SBs 754-767 were approved by the Senate with bipartisan support and now head to the Michigan House of Representatives for further consideration.