NYTs Profile of the Problem of Michigan Charter Schools — Betsy DeVos Wants to Help Her Friends to Get Rich Robbing Michigan Taxpayers of their Education Money

Here is “Michigan Gambled on Charter Schools. Its Children Lost.

An excerpt:

When I later spoke to Newland, pointing out the cultural and geographical chasm between B.M.C.C. and the downstate, urban neighborhoods so many of their charters served, he shot back that Indians knew poverty as well anyone. “It’s a different stage for the same play,” he told me. “I think we understand it very well.” Were he “designing an education system from scratch,” Newland continued, he’d make funding levels the same for every district and pay teachers “like the white-collar professionals that they are.” But he wasn’t, so he supported charter schools. Unlike Parish, Newland was willing to discuss DeVos. “I learned at a relatively young age not to ascribe malice to people as a motivation,” he said. “I think when she says, ‘I care about having our kids learn,’ I believe that.” But, Newland went on: “She didn’t go to public school. Her kids didn’t go. My guess is she doesn’t hang out with a lot of people who know what it’s like going to a school with 50 percent people of color. And I haven’t seen evidence that she’s taken the time to learn.”

MSU Law Alum Bryan Newland Joins Fletcher Law, PLLC


FletcherLaw, PLLC is proud to announce that Bryan Newland has joined the Firm as a Member. Bryan comes to Fletcher Law, PLLC following three years of service in President Obama’s Administration at the Department of the Interior. At the Department, Bryan served as a Policy Advisor to Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Larry Echo Hawk, Acting Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Del Laverdure, and Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin Washburn.

In his service, Bryan led the Department’s efforts to reform its Indian leasing regulations, and was instrumental in the passage of the HEARTH Act. Bryan also advised the Assistant Secretary on land-into-trust matters, energy policy, and gaming policy – where he helped bring about a transformation in the Federal Government’s policy relating to tribal-state gaming compacts.Newland

Bryan is a citizen of the Bay Mills Indian Community (Ojibwe), and is a 2007 graduate of the Michigan State University College of Law with a certificate from the Indigenous Law and Policy Center. He has extensive legal and policy experience relating to Indian and commercial gaming, Indian land issues, reserved treaty rights, tribal colleges, and energy development. Bryan has also represented clients relating to campaign finance compliance, election law, and other political matters.

FletcherLaw, PLLC is a national Indian-law firm based in Lansing, Michigan, and provides its clients with legal counsel and strategic consulting services. The Firm was founded in 2012 by Zeke Fletcher, a citizen of the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians and a graduate of the University of Wisconsin Law School.


To contact Zeke Fletcher at Fletcher Law, PLLC, email zfletcher@fletcherlawpllc.com or call (517) 755-0776. To contact Bryan Newland, email bnewland@fletcherlawpllc.com or call (517) 862-5570.

Last Friday’s Native America Calling Program on HEARTH Act


Friday, August 10, 2012 – Tribes Taking Control Over Leasing Their Land: (listen)
As the month of July came to a close President Barack Obama put a pen to paper to make the Helping to Expedite and Advance Responsible Tribal Homeownership (HEARTH) Act a new law. It grants greater authority to federally recognized tribes to develop and implement their own regulations for leasing on Indian lands. What opportunities does this law provide to tribal nations and their citizens? How does this new extension of sovereignty play into strengthening tribal communities? How does this legislation change things for Native families who want to own their own home or tribal citizens who want to open up their own business? Guests include Bryan Newland (Bay Mills Tribe of Chippewa Indians) Senior Policy Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs/Bureau of Indian Affairs, U.S. Department of Interior.

Featuring Bryan Newland, MSU ILPC grad (2007).