Michigan governor sends letter to Benton Harbor school board

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer has sent a letter to the Benton Harbor school board asking the board to focus on a solution to the district's recent issues, according to The Detroit News.

In the letter, Whitmer says "doing nothing" is not an option and that she will be reviewing documents sent by the board. She said she is planning to contact board members by the end of the week to set up a meeting.

On Friday, the school board rejected the state's plan to close down the high school.

We will continue to follow this breaking news story and will keep you updated on NewsCenter 16.

From Gov. Whitmer:

Dear School Board Members,

Thank you for meeting with my team and other state officials this last Wednesday, June 12, 2019. I am in receipt of your letter dated the same day, as well as your correspondence from this past Friday, June 14, 2019 and accompanying documents. Based on this most recent communication, I understand the Board voted not to accept the state's proposal to address the district's financial and academic challenges. I believe the state's proposal has merit, and if implemented in partnership with the Board, would ultimately improve educational outcomes for students and benefit the whole community.

That said, I think we all know that doing nothing is not an option for the children of Benton Harbor. As we move forward, we must focus our efforts on finding a solution that is attainable and puts students and families first. Given substantial efforts by the Board to begin crafting a plan, I look forward to working in partnership toward a solution that includes clear benchmarks, accountability, and more serious measures if these benchmarks are not satisfied.

Please know that my team and are carefully reviewing the documents submitted by the district and considering next steps. We will be in touch by the end of this week to schedule our next meeting.

Gretchen Whitmer