News & Updates

Sign our petition to Congress against education cuts now!

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In states and districts all over the country, public school budgets are being slashed to the bone, and class sizes have increased at unprecedented rates, despite the fact that smaller classes have been shown to improve outcomes for all students, particularly our neediest children. Meanwhile, the US House of Representatives has proposed cutting federal aid to education by nearly $11 billion, which would lead to even larger classes, hurt millions of students, and cause the layoffs of more teachers and …

Warning to parents about ALEC and its draft education legislation

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See the message below from a PAA member in Texas, Karen Miller.  Karen is forwarding information about William Cronon, a noted historian at UW-Madison, who wrote about ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange Council, a conservative organization backed by business interests that circulates draft legislation in every state capital, including anti-union legislation approved in Wisconsin. In retaliation, Cronon has now had his emails FOILed by the Wisconsin GOP party. As Karen points out, ALEC has a number of damaging education model …

Charlotte value-added fight moves forward

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PAA affiliate Mecklenburg ACTS is pressing forward with its challenge to the use of value-added calculations in the pay for performance system being developed by Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools (Charlotte, N.C. ) We’re moving toward 300 signatures on our petition calling for better and fairer teacher evaluations, and have just published an explanation of our stance in the Charlotte Observer, titled “Stand Up for Teachers Now.” We’ll be meeting April 5 to plan our next steps, and will turn out in …

PAA press release on "Parent Trigger" legislation

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 16, 2011 Contact: Leonie Haimson (NYC): 917-435-9329; leonieh@parentsacrossamerica.org Julie Woestehoff (Chicago):  773-538-1135; juliew@parentsacrossamerica.org Bill Ring (LA): 310-600-2015; billr@parentsacrossamerica.org Andrea Mérida (Denver): 303-550-0677; andream@parentsacrossamerica.org Caroline Grannan (SF): 415-412-5758; carolineg@parentsacrossamerica.org Julia Sass Rubin (NJ): 609-683-0046; jlsrubin@verizon.net Parents Across America: We oppose Parent Trigger laws Reform should rely on proven solutions that involve parents from the ground up and improve rather than privatize schools With California’s so-called Parent Empowerment Act drawing national media attention as a school reform panacea, …

Leonie Haimson debates Gates Foundation on 'Does Class Size Matter?'

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Listen to Leonie Haimson on Seattle public radio debating Marguerite Roza of Gates Foundation on KUOW Seattle public radio: Does Class Size Matter? Ross Reynolds 03/15/2011 at 12:20 p.m. Is reducing public school class size a cost effective way to improve education? Or is the money better spent elsewhere? We’ll hear both sides and then what you have to say. Guest(s) Marguerite Roza is a senior data and economic advisor for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and author of …

Chris Cerf, there you go again!

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This morning featured an extended story in the Star Ledger examining Chris Cerf, and his record as Deputy chancellor of NYC schools. Cerf has been appointed to be acting New Jersey Commissioner of Education by Gov. Christie, and is intent on implementing many of the same divisive policies that have been tried and failed in New York City, including charter school co-locations and expansion, and teacher merit pay linked to unreliable test scores. He is also now embroiled in the …

Andrea Mérida on AM760 discussing the dropout rate

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Here’s the sound clip from today’s interview with Mario Solis-Marich on AM760 today. Click to listen to the interview with Mario Solis-Marich on the dropout rate. Here’s the accompanying blog post, with all the data I mention. I don’t mind if you check my numbers!

Bloomberg booed and excoriated for attacks on teachers and kids

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Mayor Bloomberg was roundly booed at the annual Queens St. Patrick’s Day parade on Saturday, for threatening to lay off of over 4,000 teachers and his attack on their seniority rights. Check out the video below and excerpts from the Daily News, NY Post and NY1: Chants of “Save our Teachers” rang out from pockets of the green-clad crowd that lined Newport Ave. and Rockaway Beach Blvd. in Belle Harbor…. Anthony Hannon, 80:….“What he’s doing to our teachers and our …

PAA Affiliate Launches Pay for Performance Petition

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Mecklenburg ACTS, an affiliate of Parents Across America in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, has launched a petition that calls on Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools to remove standardized test scores from their developing pay for performance system. We’re urging parents and community members to stand up for treating our teachers fairly, and to oppose the expansion of high-stakes standardized testing. If parents band together, our voices can be heard! Our petition can be found at www.mecklenburgacts.org. For more information on Pay for …

PAA Member talking about education policy on the air

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Andrea Merida spent a good amount of time talking with Mario Solis-Marich of AM760 today about various education policy issues.  Click the little gray arrow below to listen to the interview. Andrea talks education policy topics with Mario Solis-Marich on March 2, 2011 Also, here are links to the topics she was addressing: New education recommendations from Department of Education Kansas school district gets waiver from No Child Left Behind The Kansas school district’s curriculum