“JIM CROW! GENOCIDE!” STATE LOAN BOARD APPROVES THEFT OF $1.5 B IN DPS ASSETS, $385 M IN LOANS
Dozens traveled to Lansing to oppose state dismantling of DPS district, and further debt of $385 million
Board files whistleblower complaint with SEC alleging that loan rates of up to 18% have cost DPS over $400 million under previous EM’s
EM Rhodes’ advisors told him plan would be “enormously costly”
Parthenon Group involved: “All students are not equal; SOME ARE MORE PROFITABLE THAN OTHERS”
By Diane Bukowski
July 23, 2016
Detroit school board members (l to r) Lamar Lemmons, Tawanna Simpson and Elena Herrada with sign showing how 16 years of state control has devastated DPS finances, after loan board vote.
LANSING – “You just voted for Jim Crow,” Detroit’s elected school board members and supporters shouted at the Michigan Local Emergency Financial Assistance Loan Board July 18, after it approved the transfer of over $1.5 billion in Detroit Public Schools (DPS) assets to a state-operated “community district,” and $385 million in initial loans, some at an 18 percent interest rate.
Speakers at the meeting called the plan “genocide,” and said it makes Detroit’s children second-class citizens.
“You are taking money from Detroit school kids to pay off a debt the state created,” Board of Education President Lamar Lemmons said.
A state-controlled “community district” was created July 1 under Public Acts 192-197. DPS itself will remain only to pay off about $3 billion in outstanding debt to the banks, left behind by 16 years of state control. That will come from funds meant to educate Detroit’s children, 59 percent of whom live below the poverty level. The district will be the only one in the state allowed to hire non-certified teachers. Many more of the 104 schools left in the district, down from 261 in 1992, will be required to close.
Elder Helen Moore speaks during loan board meeting July 18, as others crowd behind her waiting their turn to oppose destruction of DPS, loans.