Muskegon Heights school leaders pledge unity

The elected and charter board chairs governing Muskegon Heights Public School Academy System today announced a renewed spirit of cooperation as they welcomed incoming schools Superintendent Dr. Arnetta Thompson to her new post, less than a week before the official start of the new school year.

Trinell Scott, district board chair, and Chris Dean, charter board chair, expressed confidence in Thompson’s leadership and agreed to put the needs of the Muskegon Heights Tigers students at the fore in every conversation.

“As we approach our 100th year of operation in this community, it is a time to reflect on our rich history and plot our course for a successful future,” said Dean. “Leadership in the district welcomes the opportunity for a fresh start with our new superintendent, and we signed a statement recommitting ourselves to open, regular communications and a spirit of partnership.”

The district enters the school year with a renewed focus on reading. Powered by a $5 million state grant program to train district teachers to become master reading instructors, Thompson said she anticipates the schools will soon see dramatic gains among the students.

“Reading is fundamental to all education,” Thompson said. “Our new program helps teachers approach instruction considering the unique needs of students in our community. We’ve been training teachers all summer, and we’re excited to put this program into play this year.”

Trinell Scott, District Board Chair, said she looks forward to being engaged with the school operations more directly.

“With the state of Michigan officially relieving the Receivership board, the district board is now the authorizer for this charter school,” Scott said. “This is a unique school partnership, but we believe it can succeed for our students if the leadership throughout the district commits to working together.”

Muskegon Heights schools begin Aug. 30. Superintendent Thompson noted she anticipates parents throughout the district will take a closer look at keeping their children in the district where they live with confidence this year.

“We’re committed to providing a stable, supportive environment for our community’s children to thrive daily and achieve a brighter future through education,” Thompson said. “We’re proud to mark 100 years as the hub and heart of this community, and looking ahead to a bright future of service to students and Muskegon Heights.”

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