Misc

Parent speaks truth to Texas legislature

Posted on by Julie Woestehoff

TX Senate Education Committee Hearing Public Testimony of Lorie Barzano, March 26, 2013 Good afternoon, Committee members, guests. My name is Lorie Barzano, a public school parent, taxpayer and Chair of the Coalition to Strengthen Austin Urban Schools, a local affiliate of Parents Across America.  We are a parent led group committed to quality, accessible Public Education for all children. I come here today as a parent to speak on behalf of countless parents who cannot miss work, find childcare …

Fighting Testing Madness in North Carolina

Posted on by pagrundy

PAA affiliate MecklenburgACTS.org has launched a North Carolina-wide petition drive aimed at the high-stakes standardized tests that are doing so much damage to our children’s education. The petition builds on our successful campaign against testing madness in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools two years ago. It calls on state legislators and school officials to reduce the number of exams required by the state and to remove all high-stakes consequences such as A-F schoolgrading and any connection to teacher pay. Our goal is to …

Senate considering vouchers

Posted on by Julie Woestehoff

One of our eagle-eyed members has alerted us to the fact that the Senate may be voting this afternoon on an amendment to the FY14 budget to divert some Title 1 money to private and religious schools in the form of vouchers. Please consider calling or e-mailing your Senators as well.You can watch the vote here on C-Span. Here’s the fax we just sent to the members of the Senate education committee voicing our opposition to vouchers. Parent Voices Emergency …

Weekly Leg Fax: Democratic governance of schools

Posted on by Julie Woestehoff

Parent Voices Weekly Education Fax March 20, 2013  Support democratic governance of public schools   The story: Legislative proposal seeks to strengthen local control of schools Last November, voters in Bridgeport, Connecticut rejected a corporate reform-backed effort to strip voters of their right to an elected school board. PAA Connecticut member Wendy Lecker wrote, “Bridgeport’s voters were not fooled by the reformers’ claims. A sound majority elected to retain their right to vote, maintaining public accountability for education.” 87% of …

Weekly LegFax: Too much testing!

Posted on by Julie Woestehoff

Parent Voices Weekly Education Fax March 13, 2013  Replace massive standardized testing with meaningful assessment  The story: Parents and students across the U.S. are opting out of standardized tests A Texas mother and her son share outdoor learning while his schoolmates are indoors taking the state test (http://tinyurl.com/axwmhgq). Teachers and students in Seattle boycotted the state high school test (http://tinyurl.com/a4zmrqs). Chicago parents are passing petitions to stop the explosion of tests (http://tinyurl.com/a7pwkx9). Oregon parents are standing behind their high school …

What it means for parents to support teachers

Posted on by pagrundy

Philadelphia parents are currently engaged in an active struggle against a particularly extreme form of school district “transformation,” which includes many school closings. Their actions have included a March 5 sit-in at the Philadelphia mayor’s office. Here are the thoughts of PAA founding member Helen Gym, originally posted on the website of the Philadelphia parents’ organization “Parents United for Public Education.” Helen notes that: “Last week’s release of the District’s teacher proposal was a clear wake-up call: School closings aren’t …

Parent Voices – Weekly Legislative Fax 2-27-13

Posted on by Julie Woestehoff

Here’s the fax update PAA sent to the Congressional education committee members this week. Please share it with your Congressmen and Senators! No sequestration cuts to effective education programs! The story: Looming cuts to education Congress needs no reminder of the major story of the week concerning education (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/25/education-budget-cuts_n_1703442.html) and other vital programs that keep our nation strong. Three federal programs critical to education across the country — Title I funds for poor students, state grants for special education and …

A great day for public education

Posted on by Julie Woestehoff

Report from the 4-state regional Parents Across America/Public Schools Across America action planning meeting on February 25, 2013 Seventy-five public school activists from Michigan, Indiana, Ohio and Illinois braved ice and cold to come together for a half-day regional action planning meeting in Fort Wayne, Indiana, this past Saturday, Feb 23. This energetic and positive meeting was a great start to what we hope will be coordinated action across our four states and beyond to support and strengthen public schools …

PAA’s new weekly “Parent Voices Weekly Education Fax” to Congress

Posted on by Julie Woestehoff

Yesterday PAA launched our new weekly education update for legislators and anyone else who should be hearing more about education issues from the parents’ point of view. Our fax went to all the members of the U. S. House and Senate education committees. We will post them every week on our blog and link to that in our newsletter. We hope that you will also send these as faxes, e-mails, or snail mails to your Congresspersons and other elected officials. …

Parents Across America statement in support of Portland student test boycott

Posted on by Julie Woestehoff

Parents Across America (PAA) stands in support of the Portland Public Schools Student Union and the Portland Student Union in their opt-out campaign against the state-mandated OAKS test. 

 Excessive reliance on standardized exams narrows the curriculum, promotes teaching to the test, and leads to unfair and unreliable evaluations of students, teachers, and schools. The No Child Left Behind (NCLB) act and the recent NCLB waivers harm our schools by promoting an overemphasis on testing and punitive mandates that are …