Federal lawmakers seem to be getting serious about a rewrite of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. The OTL Campaign was proud to join over 100 grassroots community and labor groups this week to release an open letter to Congressional leaders urging them to support the development of full-service community schools, end the school-to-prison pipeline, halt federal funding for charter school expansion, and maintain the Title I program.
Rich schools are getting richer, and poor schools are getting poorer. That's the gist of new data released by the US Department of Education, highlighting just how inequitably we fund our nation's public schools. Over the past decade, the funding gap between schools in rich and poor communities has grown 44% to an average $1,500 per student.
A short video from the Southern Education Foundation demonstrates how school vouchers, which allow private schools to siphon tax payer money away from public schools, threaten our nation's system of public education while only benefiting a small, select group of students.
After months of intense organizing in Albany and across the state, education organizers in New York got a mix of victories and setbacks in the new state budget.
A new study of charter schools in New Orleans illustrates how the city's "school choice" system has allowed administrators to selectively pick students and side step the central tenet of our nation's public education system: that schools are open to and serve all students.
While debate around the reauthorization of the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act has focused mainly on issues like standardized testing, school accountability and funding, an op-ed by Louisiana education organizer Gina Womack raises another important issue for federal policymakers: addressing the discriminatory impact of harsh school disciplinary policies.
City Councilor Tito Jackson and the Boston Student Advisory Committee held a hearing this past Monday proposing that a second student representative should be added to the Boston School Committee, and that both student representatives should have full voting rights.
A new study from the University of Chicago found that while the overall number of out-of-school suspensions has decreased, suspension rates for African American male students remain especially high. This study illustrates the importance of organizing groups like Voices of Youth in Chicago Education (VOYCE), which just last week celebrated as a bill to end harsh school discipline advanced out of the Illinois Senate Education Committee.
The Education Law Center of Pennsylvania and the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia (PILCP) filed a suit on behalf of six school districts, two associations, and seven parents against the state in an attempt to prove that the government has failed to provide the "thorough and efficient" public educational system promised in the state constitution.
A rally at the Arkansas capitol building turned into an impromptu victory party as organizers and supporters received word that the bill they were protesting, House Bill 1733 had been withdrawn from consideration in the legislative session. The bill would have transferred control of struggling districts to private organizations and left these districts and the communities they serve without a voice in school reform efforts.
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