In Michigan
4:27 pm
Mon January 30, 2012

Highland Park community leaders form commission against state take over

HIGHLAND PARK, MI –

The new emergency manager of Highland Park public schools begins work in the district Monday.

As Michigan Public Radio's Laura Weber reports, community activists gathered at the district's administrative building to unveil their plans to combat the emergency manager law.

Glenda McDonald is a resident of Highland Park and a former school district employee. She says students have been leaving the district in droves because of chronic disinvestment in the schools and community.

"We want our children to come back. And in order to do that, the community must be a part of this process," he says. "We must have community involvement. We must have parent involvement."

McDonald is part of a group of activists in Highland Park who say they will hold public forums to air their concerns about the emergency manager law and how their community has been negatively impacted. The group also encouraged other financially strapped communities to take notice and consider similar community engagement.

State officials say the tie that binds school districts and communities in a financial emergency is a large loss of population.