Shirkey discusses Michigan farming and agriculture week

LANSING, Mich. — In a recent public service announcement on National Agriculture Week, state Sen. Mike Shirkey spoke about the importance of Michigan farming.

“Agriculture contributes more than $100 billion yearly to Michigan’s economy,” said Shirkey, R-Clarklake. “National Agriculture Week allows us to recognize this contribution and celebrate the richness of our agricultural traditions.”

National Agriculture Week runs from March 18 through March 24.

Select the Video link at right to view Shirkey’s PSA.

Shirkey reads to Reading students for March is Reading Month

LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Mike Shirkey recently visited students at Reynolds Elementary School in Reading as part of March is Reading Month.

Shirkey emphasized the importance of reading and read aloud to the students from “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” by Dr. Seuss.

“Reading is the key to learning, and it is great fun,” said Shirkey, R-Clarklake. “If you can read … you can do just about anything!”

Notes: For a print-quality version of this or other Shirkey photos, click the image or select Photowire, at right. A video of Shirkey reading to Reynolds Elementary School students is available by clicking the Video link at right.

Shirkey bill would allow schools to retain Labor Day waiver

LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Mike Shirkey introduced a bill on Thursday that would ensure that schools granted waivers to be in session before Labor Day would not be required to reapply for the waiver every year.

Current law bans schools from starting before Labor Day, but the Department of Education grants waivers in some cases, allowing an early start to the school year.

The waivers must be renewed every year, but under Senate Bill 885, the waivers would carry over from year to year until a school notifies the department that the waiver is no longer needed.

“Most schools retain the same or similar calendars every year, so it makes sense to enable them to retain these waivers every year,” said Shirkey, R-Clarklake. “My measure would take this decision out of the hands of the department and give it back to the schools, where it belongs.”

SB 885 has been referred to the Senate Committee on Education for consideration.