LANSING — Today, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer proposed a plan to stabilize Benton Harbor’s School District and temporarily avoid closure while working to improve academic outcomes for students. In response, state Rep. Brenda Carter (D-Pontiac) issued the following statement:

“I would like to thank Gov. Whitmer for listening to the needs of the families and community members in Benton Harbor and working to put forward a plan. Ensuring that students come first has and will continue to be my top priority, so I am grateful to see everyone involved shares that same goal. School districts like Benton Harbor now face the consequences of years of chronic underfunding and interventions that eroded or replaced local control — and problems that took years to develop will require long-term, thoughtful and complex solutions. Today’s proposal only represents a small step in that process. Whatever solution is reached will have an impact not only on Benton Harbor but on similar communities throughout the state, which is why it’s important everyone’s voice be heard and all options considered. I am looking forward to doing whatever I can to assist in this process going forward.”