Over 200 dedicated public education activists, parents, teachers, and elected officials gathered today to strategize over how to effectively engage legislators, county commissioners and school boards on critical education issues in the coming year. Among the most critical include: increasing per pupil funding provided by the state, greater educational and financial accountability for charter schools, and opposition to the so-called “achievement School District” and further privatization of public education. Advocates also insisted that racial and socio-economic diversity be prioritized, as well as an end to disparities in discipline, access to resources, the targeting of low-wealth or underperforming schools, and the privatization and marketization of public education. These are our children, not our customers.
Here’s the News & Observer op-ed by my colleague Elizabeth Haddix and me on charter schools, their lack of racial and economic diversity, and how the state could begin to address this issue.
NC Charter Schools Failing to Deliver on Diversity Promise
Thanks to Minister of Motion Picture Science Jesse Paddock for putting this together, and to Jennifer Marsh, Cameron Ellis, Jeremy Collins, Jonathan Weiler and of course, Minister of Art Ron Liberti for all their hard work and support.
With Election Day only 3 1/2 weeks away and early voting starting all over the county on April 23 (at the Board of Elcetions on the 19th), our campaign is moving into high gear. This week there was a candidates forum on Wednesday (read the WCHL coverage here http://www.chapelboro.com/BoCC-Candidates-Debate-Town-and-County-Sprawl/12811368 and the DTH story here http://www.dailytarheel.com/index.php/blog/town_talk/2012/04/4f8639264e3c6), and today I talked at length with the News of Orange and the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce.
Tomorrow I’ll be at the Orange County Democratic Party convention, and on Sunday at two house parties being held by dedicated Operation Commish supporters Catherine Devine, and Jen Bills and Barb Fedders. Sunday evening is the online candidate forum hosted by Orange Politics. I’ll be steaming and streaming!
Also this weekend we’ll be out going door-to-door in neigborhoods across District 1, talking about the core principles of our campaign: social justice, communtiy engagement, and prosperity. We’ll also be reminding folks to vote against Amendment 1, and of course, our vision of a fair county and a county fair. If you’re interested in getting out in the sunshine on Sunday afternoon and talking to folks about the campaign, please let me know.
We also have great, collectible Ron Liberit designed “fair county/county fair” t-shirts. They’re available with a donation of $25 or more.