Editor’s Note: Albion district battles outside busing

Ingrid Jacques
The Detroit News

As most school district officials could tell you, sharing students isn’t easy, especially at a time when there are fewer students in Michigan.

But some are more vocal in their defense of traditional school territories. Case in point: Albion Public Schools Superintendent Jerri-Lynn Williams-Harper. She’s not pleased that some neighboring districts are sending buses into her turf to pick up students through the state’s popular Schools of Choice program. So she recently sent out a letter to these districts—including Concord, Homer and Springport—to cease and desist.

Williams-Harper’s fellow superintendents don’t seem overly concerned by the request. And they don’t plan to stop sending buses either.

Here’s something the Albion school chief may be overlooking. Two years ago, the district made the call to close its high school because of financial problems. That means students in Albion have to go to an outside district for their last four years.

Because of this, some Albion families may choose to start sending their children to another district ahead of high school.

If Williams-Harper is concerned about declining enrollment, she should turn her attention to improving the K-8 education offered at Albion. The other districts are right to ignore her warning.