My Facebook feed is full of proud parents and high school seniors in full graduation regalia, celebrating this important life passage. School is (almost)out for summer! This year is an important one as schools, and their ceremonies, are finally back to
normal. However, the political backlight on our schools is anything but normal. The pro-charter, anti-public schools forces are growing—not simply with conservatives, but in progressive circles as well.
The Supreme Court is likely to render a disastrous opinion funneling public funds to private religious schools. The Youngkin Department of Education is laying the groundwork to claim public schools are failing and to present the solution of more charter and private school support. The Department uses flawed and downright-wrong-headed data to support its spurious claims.
The drumbeat that our schools are failing grows louder, despite the clear facts to the contrary.
Like their view on politicians, many parents seem to feel that their school is great, but that the others, in some far away place, and with different teachers, staff and leadership, are failing, or worse-corrupt.
The best way to help our schools is to speak up. Of course, we hope to see school advocates at school board meetings, hearings and at political events. But the most effective thing any of us can do is to simply speak to our neighbors and friends. The opposition is gaining traction not because they are right, but because parents simply aren’t paying attention to the threat.
Please make a commitment today, that over these lazy, lovely days of summer you will talk to just 8 friends (one a week) and let them know:
Public education is under attack.
When we take money from public schools to fund private ventures:
the taxpayer has no accountability for how these funds are spent
our children are not necessarily learning the lessons of how to thrive in a multi-cultural democracy
money spent on private schools means much less money for busses, special education and other equity needs
4 Public Education welcomes all parents and community members who want to support public education as a cornerstone of our democracy.
Send them here to sign up- sign up here.
To all our graduates: Congratulations! Have a great summer all.