Grosse Pointe Public Schools has Removed 21 Students for Violating Residency Rules

Routine residency investigation update shows the number of violators is in line with previous years.


Just over 20 students have been removed from Grosse Pointe Public Schools this school year for attending classes without residing in the district.

During this school year a total of 21 students were told to leave after district officials completed 94 residency investigations. Of those investigations, 36 resulted from complaints or tips from parents or residents to the district’s tip line and online form.

Christian Fenton, Deputy Superintendent of Business Affairs and Operations, said during Monday’s school board meeting that the rest came as a result of “the normal process," through the schools. That is by district officials receiving reports of returned mail or by teachers, counselors, office staff or principals becoming aware of students who don’t appear to live where they say they do.

In addition to conducting the investigations, the district has also spent the last several weeks verifying some 200 leases and it is currently in the process of verifying month-to-month leases.

Grosse Pointe Public Schools families can expect to see random residency verification paperwork showing up in January or February, Fenton said. The audit will be random and some parents have threatened they will not comply.

Talk of school district residency – and how it should be enforced – has quieted in recent weeks as other educational issues have come forward.  However earlier this year, the discussions were loud and argumentative resulting in the district and school board being tugged in two directions.

On one side of the residency issue, a group called Residents for Residency demanded stricter enforcement and a district-wide policy that would require all students prove residency via an affidavit every school year.

Those opposed to the annual affidavits called it a waste of time and money, a witch-hunt and accusations of racism were part of the debate.

Fenton brought the information about this year's residency investigations and violations to the board meeting on Monday as part of a regular board update.

Residency By the Numbers

The school district’s website shows that the expulsions seem to be on track with past years' data.

During the 2011-2012 school year, 183 students were investigated and 42 were excluded. Nine of the investigations resulted from residents’ tips.

The prior year 142 students were investigated and 48 were expulsed and tips from 12 residents led to investigations.

In the 2009-2010 school year, 351 investigations were conducted - 15 of them from resident tips - and 60 students were told to leave the district.

The peak number of excluded students was in 2008-2009, when 278 investigations resulted in the departure of 66 students. In the two previous school years, 47 and 49 students left for residency violations and in 2005-2006, 26 were removed.

No data was kept on resident tips during the three school years between 2005 and 2008.

Bill December 19, 2012 at 11:02 PM
You want a GPPS education than move here end of story lady
Iamright December 19, 2012 at 11:09 PM
I think this is a major witch hunt within the district. GP school district should open their enrollment to all students within Wayne County. It's time to accept some diversity within the district.
Richard Lewandowski December 19, 2012 at 11:10 PM
Of course every child deserves a good education, but not at the expense of communities they don't live in. Those of you who feel otherwise can contribute your money to several nonprofits that address such issues as oppose to forcing others to pay for your social engineering programs. Isn't altruism great when you use other people's money? Take your social engineering programs elsewhere......like Fantasy Land.
Mrs. Denson December 20, 2012 at 12:57 AM
My family and I were considering buying a home in Grosse Pointe because of the school system and the community, but after reading some of these posts I think my husband and I will have to reconsider. We don't want our children exposed to some of the ignorance that is being displayed in this community.
Mrs. Denson December 20, 2012 at 01:01 AM
I understand what most of you are saying and I wouldn't mind paying tuition for the children to attend it's just the way some of the people come off as if all children outside of GPS are trouble makers and that they don't belong in GP
Kristina Kaiser December 20, 2012 at 02:54 AM
@Todd... 1) I am not a teacher. There is not really a paycheck for me to "dig." 2) I stated that I didn't think that non-GP students should be in GPPS. I live in GP and pay GP taxes. When I have children, I will definitely want the same atmosphere and school system for them that I was fortunate enough to grow up in. If I'm not mistaken (and please correct me if I'm wrong) there are less students at GPN now than several years ago, and less students =/= need for more teachers at lower wages, correct? I could be wrong, but being at certain school (daytime) events I see less and less kids. @Diane Smith... The article certainly did not celebrate. You and others may not have celebrated. It's not you (a general "you") that I take issue with. It's the numerous other ignorant posters saying the exact same thing (here, Facebook, out in the community): Throw those kids back in Detroit where they belong, calling them a plague, talking about gangs. Specifically calling out one race. Prove me wrong, honestly, because everyone else makes me sick. @GP For Life... Rarely do I ever feel like any of your comments deserve a reply but I'll go ahead on this one. I did go to North, and I am prouder than ever. I was involved in every way I could've been. North opened up my eyes to a world I wouldn't have seen if I hadn't been so lucky to have gone there. The schools I went to (Ferry, Parcells, North) and my amazing parents made me into the woman I am today.
Kris December 20, 2012 at 03:12 AM
I am harassed every year as my home is in my mothers name and I rent from her. My children are the 5th generation in my family to live here. Our family has paid taxes to GP schools since 1934. My youngest two kids are now Seniors in high school. They have been in the district since kindergarten. Every year we are treated like crap when we must prove we are worthy of attending the schools. They make us jump thru hoops, say they don't like the way my mother worded her lease agreement, can't seem to figure out why our families have different last names etc. etc. I for one am sick of being harassed . They also have horrible hours and I have to miss work to take my paperwork to the office. If I get any of that random paperwork in january or february after having kids in the district for the past 15 years I am burning it! Can't wait till my last two graduate and get out. By the way we are white.
Joe MacDonald December 20, 2012 at 07:15 AM
Kristina, there has been a decline in enrollment at Grosse Pointe North High School since the middle part of the past decade, but enrollment is the same as it was in 2000. According to the Center for Educational Performance and Information (CEPI), the Fall Count for North in 2011 was 1,355 students (just as it was in Fall 2000). However, enrollment peaked in both Fall 2005 and Fall 2006 at 1,589 students. For more information about enrollment and other data for all Michigan schools, please visit CEPI online at http://michigan.gov/cepi.
Katie December 20, 2012 at 01:02 PM
@ Mrs. Denson - I agree with you, you should look for somewhere else to live. We're not big into communism and forced redistribution of our hard earned wealth to persons with an entitlement mentality. @ Kris - anything else to complain about? Why are you not grateful that the school system is interested in doing the right thing for your children and taxpayers? You can't wait until your last two graduate and get out? What have you given back to your community? Do you volunteer and get involved? And what does white have to do with anything?
Mike A. December 20, 2012 at 01:10 PM
I would like to see our schools opened to everyone regardless of where they live. I don't care how much I pay in school taxes. While we're at it, I would like to see our police and other emergency services patrolling Detroit too. This winter I would like to see our salt trucks cruising up and down some other city's streets to help them out. And this summer, I would like to see all of the GP parks opened up to everyone as well. We can have one big party! And... Wake up! If you want GP schools, then move in. There still are plenty of affordable rentals that will allow your kid to LEGALLY enter the schools. And guess what, you'll get the other outstanding services that come with being a resident. I (and many other residents) carefully watch nearly every dollar I earn to make sure my family can live in GP and experience the benefits of the schools and other services. And I'm tired of all of the complaints from the "persecuted" and their sympathizers who complain about elitism, racism, and other supposed factors that are keeping people from enjoying the same services. As for me, a little inconvenience or harassment is the trade-off for outstanding services and for maintaining their value and integrity. Look at the older suburbs that ring Detroit. Many had excellent services including schools but saw them deteroriate as their tax base(s) diminished. The causes are many, but the results are clear.
Diane Smith December 20, 2012 at 01:30 PM
Kris: Seems like your Mom should have done a "rent-to-own" with you over the last 15 years. I hope she gives you a discount.
Brian Vosburg December 20, 2012 at 02:04 PM
Mrs. Denson, As a GPP resident with kids in GP schools, the ignorant comments here represent a minority view from a minority of GP residents. It's what unfortunately happens when Patch doesn't enforce its own rule requiring people to use their real names when posting here. You'll find most GP residents are intelligent, rational and caring people. Unfortunately there are a few ingnorant folks who talk in thinly veiled (and sometimes not so thinly veiled) coded language and then deny being offensive. And unfortunately these same folks tend to talk annoyingly loud but in almost all cases are cowards who hide behind pseudonyms and hushed voices. I can assure you that this sort of talk is not condoned or accepted by the vast majority of GP residents.
Richard Lewandowski December 20, 2012 at 03:00 PM
Not using the USPS to send your paper work to the office but complaining about taking time off from work to take it to the office is verification that stupidity, critical thinking, and ignorance are not racially specific. There are many people of color who moved into the GPPS district.They are responsible parents and residents who moved for the benefit of our schools.These parents exercised their option of School of Choice by becoming part of the community through their commitment of residency. Why should they and other residents subsidise the non residents students who's family did not make the same commitment? Why should the residents of the GPPS district be held to a higher standard to send their children to the schools than non residents? Again, altruism is soooo goood when somebody else pay for it.
Todd December 20, 2012 at 03:48 PM
Kristina, its clear that you have some sort of agenda. I'm taking shots for a reason. Its certainly not meant to be personal (despite my zealous first post) but there is a point. Demonizing the people who care about the community because they are evil for some reason? What racist posts? I just want to scratch away at your disgust. Other news sources seem to love creating controversy using the posts on this site. Frankly, its yellow journalism a la William Randolph Hurst. We cant change Gannett, but we can address them. When someone comes on here to shame the "racist Grosse Pointers" I take notice and want an explanation. So, is you point that Grosse Pointer's are terrible monsters who hate everyone else's kids? I would hate to think that you are being mistaken for some misguided soul trying to rationalize stealing.
Todd December 20, 2012 at 04:01 PM
says the person with no financial or personal interest in the district other than wanting to benefit from its effectiveness. can I stop by your house and grab a few things out of the fridge? you have plenty right?
Todd December 20, 2012 at 04:05 PM
wow. you certainly have a problem with "the man"
Kristina Kaiser December 20, 2012 at 04:50 PM
@Joe MacDonald, thank you for the reference and information, I appreciate it.
Blue_Devil December 20, 2012 at 10:02 PM
OMG... I think it is time for Wayne County schools to improve their district to heights so high that GP resys start considering sending their kids to WCS. Charity begins at home, fix your block, then your city, your schools, your county. Don't be a virus, using diversity as a cloak, shame on you.
Mrs. Denson December 20, 2012 at 11:36 PM
@ Brian Vosburg I really appreciate you taking the time out to comment. Thank you. It's good to know that you and fellow Grosse pointers are not so negative. My husband and I love shopping in the pointes and sometime just driving thru to look at the beautiful homes. We might continue with our plan. We will see how things go and thanks again.
Mrs. Denson December 20, 2012 at 11:42 PM
@ Katie My husband and I just want to live in a nice community to raise our family. Life is too short to deal with ignorance or negativity. So if we decide that Grosse. Pointe Is not the place for us we have that right along with the right of what and who we expose our children to
Richard Lewandowski December 21, 2012 at 03:16 AM
Social Engineering is soooo much fun! When I get to play poor opprest victimized person, I get sympathy and with sympathy I get things for free. It worked for years and it's working now. LOL! If you give me things I'll tell people I like you and i won't say anything negative about you or call you ignorant. I want to have everybody go to GPPS and you residents to pay for it. If not, I'm going to say bad things about you and call you names. I can do that because it works. HA, HA, HA!!!
Mrs. Denson December 21, 2012 at 12:43 PM
@Richard Who said anything about receiving anything for free?Alot of parents wouldnt mind paying for their kids education if they were allowed to and no one wants sympathy. At the end of the day your speaking negatively about children and that's where the ignorance comes into play.
walden schmidt December 21, 2012 at 12:44 PM
The parents should be charged with larceny and locked up for 4 years.
Higher Grounds December 21, 2012 at 02:18 PM
@Richard Lewandowski The verification process cannot be completed by USPS. People are required to bring documentation to the GP School Administration building. In the future, please how knowledge of what you opine about before you display the ignorance and stupidity you so rudely accused Kris of.
Higher Grounds December 21, 2012 at 02:29 PM
If you truly feel this way, then please proceed with the plan! The necessary documents are listed on the district website and can be handed in at the school administration building. The school board meets the last Monday of every month and I'm sure they would love to see a resident being proactive and supporting their efforts. Just to be helpful, here is a link with of the necessary required documents: http://gpschools.schoolwires.net/cms/lib05/MI01000971/Centricity/domain/161/enrollment%20forms/2012/updated%20residency%20requirements%208.27.12.pdf
rmabraham December 21, 2012 at 05:03 PM
I encourage residents of every city to look on their winter tax bill and see what it says for schools (school operating, sch supplement and school debt) add those 3 numbers up and post them here. If you live in the Pointes - depending on the value of your home, that number will be somewhere north of $800. Here is how I see it - I could care less what race you are - or where you live. If you DON"T pay that - then you don't get to come to our schools. End of story. That dollar amount is the reason why children get a superior education here. We supplement - yes - we ADD TO the $$ amount that Lansing gives us per pupil. I don't get to walk into Macy's and say "I wish I could have that $200 dress over there, even though I can only afford this $50 dress over here" and take the first one home anyway. Why do people feel entitled to do that with education? If someone was stealing clothes or computers "you" would be all up in arms, this is no different. You get what you pay for in this world.
Richard Lewandowski December 22, 2012 at 05:09 PM
@Denson You cannot quote anything negative written about children in my entries of 12/19/12,12/20/12 or12/21/12. Accusations such as yours are typical of people from a copulation based culture who never heard of delayed gratification. The GPPS is a school of choice district. If you choose to send your children to GPPS you can if you are in district. You are not obligated, it is your choice. You are the only one responsible for your children not attending our schools, not the tens of thousands of residents who exercised their options.
Richard Lewandowski December 22, 2012 at 06:37 PM
@ pointe mother Nowhere in the entry of 12/20/12 from Kris is indicated the process must be completed in person. In a forum such as this I can only comment on what Kris writes, and her choosing not to present critical information supporting her position is a demonstration of ignorance and stupidity. Just as you demonstrated your ignorance and stupidity of 12/20/12 without reading and comprehending her absence of information in her entry of 12/20/12. THANK YOU!!!! You verified you ARE what you accused me of being. By the way pointe mother, why are you, Kris, Denson and others afraid to use your full name in this forum?
Richard Lewandowski December 23, 2012 at 12:48 AM
@pointe mother There is nothing in the entry of 12/19/12 by Kriss that states she has to submit her paperwork in person. Comments given are based on the information she and she alone gave in her entry. If she gives the wrong information and people like myself comment, that's her fault. Please leave your name and email so that I may consult you on all matters concerning Kriss and everyone for that matter. Oh!! I forgot, you don't even use your name on this site. Now that's rude Social Engineering is soooo gooood when other people pay for it, isn't it!!!!
Dara Harbin January 01, 2013 at 03:52 AM
My name is Dara Harbin and I have lived in Grosse Pointe District since 2007. I have a 5th grader and 3rd grader who attend Defer. I am Black and I do feel that you should live in the district as I do even though I am renting. I do not have a problem filling out the paperwork but what I do have a problem with is that my daughter has exceeded the Districts average every year yet when I "apply" for the magnet program she is denied every time stating she needs cluster or differentiation and to my knowledge no Black students are in the program, (I could be wrong but I don't believe so). When I say she exceeds the goal I mean she is 25-30 points over the district average, she attended Chrysler Elementary who specialized in Journalism in Detroit for only because GP wanted me to pay $3000 for all day kindergarten when I LIVED in the district so I went where it was free. lol. Daughter reads on a 5th grade level and she is 8 so I would be absolutely stupid to move her when she is excelling but what should I be thinking if race is not a factor??. The Pointes are an amazing place to live and I have not had any other problems, I do wish it was more diverse but I will pay the extra rent to live here because both of my children's education has no pricetag. I would love to hear what we are doing wrong here or should we file appeals because I think she should get in, or maybe I should ask for the records of the ones that are in it and compare them. Hmmm.. Not a bad idea.


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