Emily Joan Elliott and Al Hargrave Jackson discuss Covid 19 and continuing efforts related to diversity, equity, and inclusion in East Lansing Public Schools. Give a listen!
Emily Joan Elliott and Al Hargrave Jackson discuss Covid 19 and continuing efforts related to diversity, equity, and inclusion in East Lansing Public Schools. Give a listen!
The School Board unanimously approved a new curriculum for teaching about HIV and AIDS, a high school-led trip to Germany, and a new contract with the teachers’ union. Al Hargrave Jackson reports.
Following the murder of George Floyd, ELPS administrators vowed to undertake new efforts related to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Where does the district stand on meeting those goals?
Nonprofit Spark in the Dark is a network that connects people in need to neighbors that can help. Sarah Spohn spoke to Executive Director and Founder Abagail McKiernan to learn more.
In this episode of The Insider, Andrew and Emily go in-depth on the recent discussions at City Council and Planning Commission regarding the Northern Tier. It’s a discussion ranging from land use to town-gown relations, so give it a listen!
The School Board unanimously voted to adopt five new policies on Monday as it reviews and revises its new policy manual. Al Hargrave reports on the policy changes.
The City currently has 64 fewer employees than it did on Dec. 31, 2019 — and the departures have been most prevalent among Black employees. What else did ELi find out about changes in the City’s workforce?
The ELPS School Board weighed the benefits and setbacks of increasing options for public comment at its Feb. 14 meeting.
City Council passed an ordinance requiring City-owned restrooms provide free menstrual products.
ELi brings answers to a series of questions about how ELHS is handling Covid-19 after reports in early January that hundreds of students were absent.
Full-time employees working for the City of East Lansing on Feb. 6, 2022, will receive a $2,000 bonus, and part-time workers will receive a $1,000 bonus, with a total of about $675,000 in tax dollars to be used. The intent is to reward and retain current employees.
The ELPS School Board unanimously voted to make Kate Powers president in 2022, as the district faces high numbers of absenteeism at ELHS and challenges from the more transmissible Omicron variant.
With the arrival of Omicron, how will the district balance protecting students from both Omicron and the detrimental effects of social isolation, just as students were adjusting to in-person learning?
ELi’s mission is to bring East Lansing the news. Here’s a look at what we think we’ll be helping you to know about and understand in context in 2022.
We asked our reporters which stories that they wrote meant the most to them in 2021. They answered, passing along a varied collection of stories for this year in review.
Two East Lansing churches are looking at providing faith-based reparations to the Black community in the Greater Lansing area. The idea has recently come for discussion to East Lansing’s Human Rights Commission.
Recently-unionized East Lansing Public Library workers and the administration have signed a contract. Meanwhile, repair costs at the library continue to skyrocket, now reaching twice the originally-accepted bid. What’s going on?
UPDATE: At last night’s meeting, Council supported a motion by Council member George Brookover asking the City Manager to look into using ARPA funds for extra pay for “all unelected part time and full time City employees.”
At its first meeting since the school shooting in Oxford, Michigan, the ELPS School Board discussed student safety and a host of other issues, including finances, a new policy handbook, and curriculum changes. Al Hargrave delivers your School Board round up.
East Lansing, including Michigan State University, occupies the Lands of the Anishinaabeg, and Indigenous faculty at MSU are drawing attention to that with a Land Acknowledgement statement. The City has sometimes adapted and used the statement, too. What is the history of this Land Acknowledgment? What might it mean moving forward?
The local healthcare infrastructure is showing signs of extraordinary stress, as Covid numbers here are surging upward, the flu is spreading, and Sparrow Hospital healthcare professionals –exhausted by the pandemic experience – are seeking better working conditions. Emily Joan Elliott reports.
ELi’s Andrew Graham spoke with ELHS players, parents, and the district’s athletic director about what happened, what they felt, and where it all goes from here.
ELPS continues to grapple with issues related to returning to school during a pandemic, including vaccinating students, addressing mental health stressors, and messaging good student conduct. Here’s the School Board meeting round up.
Jessy Gregg, who had been serving as Mayor since Aaron Stephens’ resignation, has again been elected Mayor Pro Tem. Dana Watson and George Bookover were also sworn in.
After parent pushback and national media attention, Monday night’s School Board meeting focused on the decision to end in-school Halloween and Valentine’s Day celebrations. What did the Board and Superintendent say about the issue?
The controversy surrounding MSU’s request for faculty and staff to volunteer their personal time to work in dining halls is only the tip of the iceberg locally in terms of tensions between employees and management. What else is happening around town?
Emily Joan Elliott and Heather Brothers discuss City Council’s debate over a new labor contract for command officers in the East Lansing Police Department. The two then provide a weekly news round up.
Council approved the Settlement Agreement between the City and ELPD’s command officers in a 4-1 vote. Why did a Council member ask for discussion on the contract and ultimately vote against it?
The City of East Lansing now prohibits hair-based discrimination, and the next City Council will see a slight increase in their pay. Lisa Babcock also reminded the community about her flooding town hall on Thursday. Find out about all this, the City’s litigation update, and more!
According to teachers’, administrators’, and families’ anecdotal reports, aggressive behavior among students has been on the rise. What has caused this uptick? How is it being handled?
ELi’s Emily Joan Elliott speaks with East Lansing Public Schools Superintendent Dori Leyko about the pandemic and the school district’s commitment to equity and social justice. Give a listen!
The Elementary Principal Team at ELPS sent a letter to families, saying that they had examined the unintended consequences of celebrating the holidays. Here’s what informed the decision.
The Human Rights Commission had previously reviewed policing and complaints about policing in East Lansing, but now the new Police Oversight Commission will take over that task. How is the HRC reimagining its place in the community with less on its plate?
After reviewing 39 applications and conducting 37 interviews, representatives for the City of East Lansing selected 11 commissioners, and Council gave its approval. Who are the new commissioners?
City Council candidate forums, the possibility of a new City Attorney, an issue of representation at the Arts Commission, and parliamentary procedure. Alice Dreger brings updates on all that and more!
Council member Ron Bacon said he wants an analysis from “someone who isn’t so closely tied to the project.” ELi’s Andrew Graham reports on the tense exchange at last night’s City Council meeting.
Carson told ELi she’s looking forward to being Chief of the “outstanding group of paramedics and firefighters who provide excellent emergency medical services and fire protection to the community.”
On the eastern edge of East Lansing, five homeowners have spent weeks trying to figure out why the Aug. 12 rains flooded their basements with sewage. Weeks later, like most residents, they still haven’t gotten satisfying answers. Andrew Graham reports.
The relatively high Covid numbers at Glencairn Elementary dominated discussions, but the School Board trustees also discussed how to use remaining bond money, a financial audit, and more. We bring you a round up.
On Friday, Sept. 24, the City of East Lansing and East Lansing Public Schools honored Dr. Robert L. Green, a nationally-recognized civil rights leader and one of the first Black homeowners in East Lansing.
Supporters at the library workers’ rally included fellow librarians from MSU, LCC, and CADL, plus several East Lansing citizens, including one candidate for City Council.
Alice Dreger, Emily Joan Elliott, and Andrew Graham cover some of the most recent Ask ELi’s that they have investigated. Give a listen to learn more about flooding, drains, construction, schools, and more!
Get details on Friday’s celebrations and find out what we’ve learned thanks to ELi readers about the history of racial integration in East Lansing.
Planning staff for the City of East Lansing is looking for input on a “Near Term Housing Action Plan” as well as a longer-term vision. How can you listen and weigh in?
Elected Sheriff Scott Wriggelsworth declined to tell ELi earlier this week who was with him and who against him on a controversial firearms issue. Now we know. ELi’s Heather Brothers reports.
A lawsuit settlement, hair discrimination, food trucks in neighborhoods, controversially-confidential legal opinions, and more at this week’s East Lansing City Council. Catch up with ELi!
Local faith leaders, artists, and charitable organizations are offering many ways area residents can help refugees from Afghanistan.
Ingham County Sheriff Scott Wriggelsworth has been canvassing municipalities in an attempt to get local leaders to sign onto his statement opposing County Prosecutor Carol Siemon’s reforms. Heather Brothers reports on his failure to convince East Lansing City Council to sign.
A new apartment building and other big changes coming soon to the Valley Court Park area? Learn the latest from ELi’s Alice Dreger.
“We’re wondering what’s going on, and why this is happening,” said one thirty-year resident of Northlawn Avenue today after the street was hit with extraordinary flooding again.
Judge Molly Hennessey Greenwalt expressed her excitement about serving her community, particularly in her capacity overseeing District 54B’s sobriety and drug courts.
The nonprofit consultant hired to articulate the potential for constructing affordable live-work space for artists in East Lansing is coming to town next week, and now is your chance to have your ideas heard.
The latest fall 2021 exhibitions at the Broad focus on the issue of mass incarceration in the U.S. Sarah Spohn reports on what the exhibits include, associated events, and the meaning behind the installations.
The applications are in, and applicants are varied in background, area of expertise, and reasons for applying. What do we know about the applicant pool?
While the meeting largely focused on excitement about returning to school on the heels of the district’s unusually intensive summer offerings, a debate emerged during public comment about the district’s work related to equity and social justice. We bring you a round up of the Aug. 23 School Board meeting
Klaudia Burton, who had previously taught science at ELHS, will take on the new position. What inspired her to apply? What does she envision for the district’s future?
Anaiis Rios-Kasoga, Laila Lloyd, and Liyu Mesay discuss their work with the Black Student Union at ELHS, how the 2016 presidential election shaped their high school years, and what ELHS could do – and in some cases, has already done – to build a more inclusive environment
Before the unanimous vote in favor at Monday’s School Board meeting, Green’s oldest son spoke warmly of his parents and of his own experience in the East Lansing Public Schools.
At the Council of Neighborhood Presidents’ meetings, your neighborhood could have the ear of locally powerful people. But are you represented there?
Employees in non-supervisory roles at the East Lansing Public Library (ELPL) rejected a contract offered by the City because it did not include stipulations that the workers are fighting for. What are the workers hoping to receive? What happens next?
ELi’s Managing Editor talks to Alex Hosey, a local civil rights activist and youth reporter for ELi. Hosey spoke about his decision to sit for the national anthem during a basketball game several years ago, his experience as a Black young man in East Lansing, and his future plans.
Several Ingham County police chiefs objected to Ingham County Prosecutor Carol Siemon’s changes to traffic stop protocol. ELPD has not made clear how the changes will affect East Lansing.
ELi’s Publisher and Executive Director Alice Dreger and reporter Heather Brothers speak with Dr. Cedrick Heraux, who served on the Study Committee on an Independent Police Oversight Commission, about policing in East Lansing. Give a listen!
Outside of Peanut Barrel in downtown East Lansing, a tree can be found wrapped in colorful yarn, emblazoned with the word “LOVE” down the middle. Adan Tomas Quan reports for ELi on why Diane Barnum undertook this project and what it means to her.
The staff of the ELHS newspaper called for a more inclusive and equitable district, but the town hall they called for didn’t happen. So what did? How might renaming Pinecrest Elementary honor local civil rights history?
Almost 50 years ago, East Lansing’s City Council became the first elected body in the nation to protect gay men and lesbians from discrimination. But the landmark resolution is missing from City records. What do we know about East Lansing’s history of protections for LGBTQ+ people?
After an ELi reader pointed out that ELPD was ticketing cars on Juneteenth when holiday parking rules should have been in effect, Mayor Aaron Stephens explained at last week’s Council meeting how those affected can appeal. How might the City honor Juneteenth in future years?
Seven million to the pensions. Water shut-offs starting soon. City lawsuit information might be disclosed to the public again. What else did we see at City Council this week?
Will Pinecrest get a new name? Will school be in-person or virtual in the fall? When will food distribution happen? Is the track open to the public? Find the answers to these questions – and more – in the School Board round up.
After holding its first Juneteenth celebration in 2020, the Pinecrest Neighborhood Association will do the same this year on Saturday at 2 p.m. What will the event include? What is its significance to the community?
Since December 2020, ELPD has had a Community Engagement Team that consists of three neighborhood resource specialists and two social workers. Ann Kammerer speaks to Tonya Williams, the lead Neighborhood Resource Specialist for ELPD, to find out more about the work the specialists are doing in East Lansing.
A lot happened at this week’s four-hour City Council meeting. ELi’s Jack Timothy Harrison brings you up to speed with a 5-minute read!
In an unusual and somewhat tense split vote, Aaron Stephens, Jessy Gregg, and Dana Watson voted in favor, while Lisa Babcock and Ron Bacon voted against. Why? ELi’s Andrew Graham reports.
MSU switched the insurance it provides for its retirees, causing some to face serious billing issues. International students are left to navigate a healthcare system very different from the ones that they are familiar with. What can those in our area do if they are facing large medical bills?
A press release from the City suggests Council will definitely establish an Independent Police Oversight Commission. But what might that look like? ELi’s Heather Brothers reports.
What decisions were made by East Lansing’s City Council this week? Find out in this recap from ELi, your local independent news source.
Marking the one year anniversary of George Floyd’s murder, what plans does the district have to continue its work on racial equity and social justice? How might changes made during the pandemic improve future years?
A recent study of East Lansing residents’ attitudes on policing said it included 51 African American and/or Black respondents, but Dr. Cedrick Heraux discovered discrepancies after looking at the raw data. What did he find in his deep dive into the numbers?
City Council’s latest budget discussion revealed some key differences of opinion – including between the City Manager and Council members. Which disagreements grew tense? ELi’s Alice Dreger reports.
In meetings with the Housing and Planning Commissions, questions were raised about housing for seniors and about how a more racially diverse population could be attracted to live in East Lansing. What now?
The program has paired MSU students and local senior citizens for both one-on-one meetings and larger group classes online. What have students and seniors enjoyed? How might the program evolve in fall 2021?
At this week’s public hearing, unlike the last, representatives of social service agencies came forward to ask Council to channel federal grant dollars to their work. Jack Timothy Harrison reports for ELi.
The ELPS Mental Health Advisory Committee partnered with a team at MSU to create a new website that provides mental health information and resources. It is part of a multi-pronged approach to help students.
The editorial board of Portrait, East Lansing High School’s student newspaper, is calling on the leadership of East Lansing Public Schools to attend to concerns they have identified. Board Trustee Monica Fink read a statement in which she also questioned how the district leadership is managing issues of racism and equity. Here is what happened last evening.
Matthew Christians, the MMS teacher who had been put on non-disciplinary administrative leave, returned to the classroom today. Superintendent Dori Leyko provided families with other updates from the district’s investigation on how slavery had been taught.
The City Council is poised to make decisions about whether to use federal grant dollars to fund local social service agencies. So, why didn’t any agencies show up to the first public hearing?
The superintendent says that in addition to a thorough investigation, the district is reviewing the curriculum and keeping other promises made following the murder of George Floyd. ELi’s Emily Elliott reports.
The amount now owed to the water system is about ten times what would be expected in a normal year on July 1. East Lansing’s Finance Director and City Manager told Council that staff are trying to figure out how to help those in financial distress. ELi’s Andrew Graham reports.
Some students at ELHS have already received a vaccine, and more plan on it. What is preventing some from receiving a vaccine? ELi’s Adan Tomas Quan reports.
What have we learned so far about the study that many have hoped will tell us if there’s a student-housing bubble forming here? Andrew Graham reports from City Council.
The assignment asked students to imagine themselves as enslaved persons. How did ELPS teachers come to this assignment? What is the district doing to address the issue?
In 1964, Dr. Robert L. Green was an East Lansing resident and MSU faculty member who made a complaint to the federal government in a case related to a house he wanted to buy in the Glencairn neighborhood. Green was also a national leader in civil rights. Now, a local group is seeking to honor his legacy of local and national leadership.
Despite paying nearly $20,000 for the survey conducted by a private firm, the City did not receive the raw data collected. Council expressed concern over the way survey results were analyzed and presented. What were the issues? How might the results be used moving forward?
Could revolving funds be used to create a win-win situation for landlords and homeowners in near-university neighborhoods like Chesterfield Hills?
Anti-Asian violence has been on the rise in some of the nation’s largest cities, but Asian and Asian-American students at MSU reported an uptick in anti-Asian sentiment in February 2020, associated with the spread of Covid-19. A town hall and vigil on Thursday will provide space for discussion and support.
What kinds of things does this relatively new City Council want to see funded with HUD funds in the near future?
Covid-19 has been present in East Lansing for over a year. How has it changed our community? Where does our community stand now in terms of the virus?
After announcing that second-year students will be required to live on-campus, MSU is upgrading its infrastructure and making other changes. What will this entail?
MDHHS announced on Friday that all Michiganders 16 and older with underlying conditions will be eligible for vaccine beginning Mar. 22. All Michiganders will be eligible on April 5.
Some ELPS students will return to in-person learning on Mar. 1. The Board provides some details on safety protocols, and Curriculum Director Glenn Mitcham reviewed the district’s professional development focused on social and racial justice.
Checking for appointments and waiting for emails has begun to feel like a full-time job, filled with anxiety and confusion. Emily Joan Elliott reports on what seniors have to say what has caused some of the confusion.
The library has tentative plans to reopen on Mar. 1. In the meantime, staff are implementing public health protocols and conducting a cultural diversity audit on the library’s collections. Heather Brothers reports.
The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commission of Mid-Michigan will host an event on television this evening. This morning, ELi reflects on covering news related to racial equity and justice.
The City’s use of CDBG funds has been controversial, which might explain holding a public hearing disassociated with any regular body’s meeting and sandwiched between Christmas and New Year’s.
Committee members were concerned about the ultimate powers the Oversight Commission might hold and if the community would view it as independent. Heather Brothers reports.
Presentations from Deputy Police Chief Steve Gonzalez and Human Rights Commissioner Liz Miller helped the Study Committee get a better grasp on the challenges ahead. Heather Brothers reports.
The usual trio of Andrew Graham, Emily Joan Elliott and Alice Dreger break down the latest news from East Lansing and bring an interview from an ELi donor.
After hearing about the resolution from Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Administrator Elaine Hardy, Council voted to approve the resolution. Emily Joan Elliott reports.
Despite Thanksgiving being on Thursday, there’s a slew of meetings over the first half of the week. Andrew Graham breaks down what’s to come.
How does ELi cover taxes and finances in East Lansing? Publisher Alice Dreger explains.
Speaking to ELi on Wednesday, the head coach hoped that the new Covid restrictions work and his team can get back on the field in December. Andrew Graham reports.
During a discussion-only meeting, Council members seemed open to the idea of a tax exemption for TechSmith and briefly workshopped parking solutions, among other things. Andrew Graham reports.
Want to weigh in on cultural arts grants, a resolution declaring racism a public health crisis, money problems in Parks & Rec and in the parking system, and traffic on Highland Ave.? ELi’s Emily Joan Elliott tells you which East Lansing City meetings will cover what this week.
After a presentation on Oct. 26, several members of the Study Committee on an Independent Police Oversight Commission expressed concern about the rate at which ELPD officers interacted with African Americans. Heather Brothers reports.
Alice Dreger takes you through the news and notes from a (very) brief City Council meeting on Tuesday night.
Mark Bell and Steve Willobee confirmed to Council on Tuesday night that they have rented four units to people under the 55+ age restriction. This violates local law, the development agreement made with Council, and the building’s permit.
“They need to abide by the terms of this agreement,” twenty-two tenants tell City Council about the Center City developers. Popular opinion appears aligned with the tenants.
Ingham County Health Officer Linda Vail is now plainly calling on students to stop partying, warning that “Sicker, older people will get it and die.” ELi’s Emily Joan Elliott reports.
A new take on the old coffee house favorite: the open mic. Sarah Spohn brings us the story.
“I’ve heard the complaints from Harbor Bay,” Council member Lisa Babcock tells ELi. “It looks like they’re having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.”
East Lansing’s Council took up many issues of equity and racism at last week’s five-hour meeting, including passing an anti-bias law and authorizing the use of $153K for anti-racism training.
Wearing matching t-shirts saying “good trouble,” the new City Council met for the first time last night. We give you a rundown of what happened during those five hours.
What’s the Elder Persons Millage on the Aug. 4 Ingham County ballot about? ELi’s Emily Joan Elliott explains.
At the City of East Lansing, men hold two-thirds of the full-time jobs, and five departments employ only white people. ELi’s Emily Joan Elliott reports.
ELi’s Alice Dreger explains how Big Marijuana came to dominate East Lansing’s business scene and why some think it’s high time to pursue “Social Equity.”
Elaine Hardy tells ELi she’s ready to speak truth to power in City Hall when it comes to issues of diversity, inclusion, and equity. “Otherwise, the position is unnecessary.”
“The March Against Fear” started at East Lansing’s City Hall and Police Department and ended at the MSU President’s house. Andrew Graham reports, with photos from Gary Caldwell.
Beier declared herself “fully woke,” Stephens wants social workers in the police department, Meadows defended his claim “good cops don’t protect bad cops,” Babcock was largely silent, and Gregg wants to look at defunding the police.
Rane, the leader of yesterday’s event, told those assembled the conflict “is not Black versus White. Let us be clear about that. It is racism against America. It is inequality against America.”
Protestors called for the firing of an ELPD officer and dropping of charges against a black man who that officer injured and then held down with his knee.
About a thousand people came to protest at East Lansing Police headquarters today as part of nationwide protests against racist police brutality. In a tense stand-off, a police vehicle’s windows were smashed.
A resident and an employee have tested positive for COVID-19, but the cases are unrelated.
What African Americans have been saying for years has now been shown conclusively: stops made by East Lansing Police Department officers evidence a cumulative racial bias.
What’s it like being an international student at MSU during the rapid changes caused by the pandemic? ELi’s Emily Joan Elliott spoke with Ramya Swayamprakash and Liao Zhang to find out.
At Burcham Hills, elimination of communal activities is one of the protections in place during the coronavirus emergency. ELi’s Emily Joan Elliott spoke to residents about their concerns.