New York

New Yorkers Across the State Join the People's March for Education Justice

On Saturday, March 4th, New Yorkers took to the streets to march for equity in public education. The People’s March for Education Justice was held in 8 cities across the state. The marchers’ demands are:

  • fully resourced public education, starting with early childhood and including higher education.
  • to end the privatization of public schools and to end high stakes testing.
  • to end the school-to-prison pipeline.
  • to Raise the Age and decriminalize our youth.

On Saturday, March 4th, New Yorkers took to the streets to march for equity in public education. The People’s March for Education Justice was held in 8 cities across the state. The marchers’ demands are:

State: 

You're Invited! Schott 25th Anniversary Awards Gala

More than two decades after Schott’s founding, we remain committed to helping build the education justice movement and institutionalize the solutions that provide all students with a fair and substantive opportunity to learn.

Join us for an evening gala of live music and social justice as we celebrate 25 years of accelerating advocacy and delivering impact! We will have stellar youth entertainment and present awards that recognize and highlight community, philanthropic, and grassroots leaders who have made crucial progress in the struggle for systemic change.

More than two decades after Schott’s founding, we remain committed to helping build the education justice movement and institutionalize the solutions that provide all students with a fair and substantive opportunity to learn.

After the DeVos Vote: the Fight for Public Education Continues

Yesterday the Senate voted 50-50, with Vice President Mike Pence casting the tie-breaking vote, to confirm Michigan billionaire Betsy DeVos as the 11th U.S. Secretary of Education. The vote—which followed an overnight session of protest and some support of DeVos—marked the first time in history a vice president has been called upon to break a tie on a presidential nomination. The historic vote also followed a widely publicized groundswell of grassroots opposition to the nomination, citing among other issues, DeVos’s lack of experience, support of privatization and unfamiliarity with education policy and practice.

At the Schott Foundation we were clear that DeVos is dangerously unqualified for such an important position governing our nation’s public schools.

Following yesterday’s confirmation, our grantees and allies in education justice are speaking loud and clear: the fight for public education and equity in opportunity for all students continues.

Yesterday the Senate voted 50-50, with Vice President Mike Pence casting the tie-breaking vote, to confirm Michigan billionaire Betsy DeVos as the 11th U.S. Secretary of Education. The vote—which followed an overnight session of protest and some support of DeVos—marked the first time in history a vice president has been called upon to break a tie on a presidential nomination.

Spotlight on CEJ: More Powerful Together

In honor of #GivingTuesday on November 29th, the Schott Foundation has reached out to some of our grantee partners to get the low-down on what they do, who they’re doing it for, and the challenges that they handle like rockstars every day.

The Schott Foundation has partnered with CEJ for several years, supporting their policy advocacy work with New York City parents around the Community Schools Initiative.

In honor of #GivingTuesday on November 29th, the Schott Foundation has reached out to some of our grantee partners to get the low-down on what they do, who they’re doing it for, and the challenges that they handle like rockstars every day.

The Schott Foundation has partnered with CEJ for several years, supporting their policy advocacy work with New York City parents around the Community Schools Initiative.

Today, we’re catching up with Natasha Capers, Coordinator.

State: 

NY Advocates Walk 150 Miles for Equity

In 2003, parents and advocates marched 150 miles from New York City to Albany to herald a court case that claimed New York State was failing to provide quality education to public school students. The court ruled in favor of the plaintiffs, and the state committed to allocating $5.5 billion distributed throughout the state’s public school districts. This is when the story should have ended, but it didn’t.

$3.9 billion is still owed to New York State public schools. And that is why this October – ten years after that first court hearing – parents and advocates have made the same walk again. Another 150 miles from New York City to the steps of the New York State Court of Appeals in Albany, fighting for educational funding long overdue.

In 2003, parents and advocates marched 150 miles from New York City to Albany to herald a court case that claimed New York State was failing to provide quality education to public school students. The court ruled in favor of the plaintiffs, and the state committed to allocating $5.5 billion distributed throughout the state’s public school districts. This is when the story should have ended, but it didn’t.

State: 

Brooklyn Boutique Teams Up with Girls for Gender Equity for #FeministGold

They were selling – and fast.

When Diana Kane English noticed how quickly her new line of gold-lettered “Feminist” t-shirts was flying off the shelves of her Park Slope boutique, she was stunned. Her inspiration for creating them, after all, was born of a typical designer frustration: “I wanted one, and Googling wasn’t turning up what I wanted.”

Her first shipment sold out in two days, and, months later, her shop is still buzzing. “The excitement just keeps growing,” says Diana. “People are buying them for themselves, their girlfriends, sisters, kids, mothers – even husbands.”

They were selling – and fast.

When Diana Kane English noticed how quickly her new line of gold-lettered “Feminist” t-shirts was flying off the shelves of her Park Slope boutique, she was stunned. Her inspiration for creating them, after all, was born of a typical designer frustration: “I wanted one, and Googling wasn’t turning up what I wanted.”

State: 

They're walking 150 miles to save their public schools. Here's how you can help

Why are advocates walking from New York City to Albany?

In 2006, New York State’s highest court ruled on the Campaign for Fiscal Equity (CFE) school funding lawsuit. The CFE lawsuit was brought by parents against the State of New York claiming that children were not being provided an opportunity to receive an adequate education.

The Schott Foundation was among the first to fund the Campaign for Fiscal Equity in the mid-1990s which sparked a movement — and a victory. In 2006 the Court of Appeals ruled in CFE’s favor and found that New York State had violated students' constitutional right to a “sound and basic education” by depriving schools of needed funding. The Court ordered the NY Legislature to distribute $5.5 billion in basic operating aid (also known as Foundation Aid) to schools statewide over a four-year period, from 2007 to 2011.

Yet — ten years later — New York still owes its children $3.9 billion in Foundation Aid, most of which is owed to districts with high percentages of students of color. The state has only allocated $2.3 billion in Foundation Aid to schools thus far due to funding freezes during the fiscal crisis and further cuts to school aid.

CFE advocates need your support!
Education advocates are walking from NYC to Albany and need your help!
State: 

Youth Leaders are Changing the Conversation on College Access

“If you have a friend of a friend with a kid – even a stranger – remind them that they’re worth something.”

Student Karoline Jimenez urged this of her audience after an hour of tears and testimony at the Philanthropy New York (PNY) June 17th screening of Stepping Up, a glimpse into the world of college access by filmmaker Julie Dressner. This feature-length documentary will highlight the woefully high 250:1 student-to-guidance counselor ratio in New York City. Guidance counselors have little time, says the film, to spend with their assigned students on college guidance, and there are deep disparities between students from low-income and high-income backgrounds who succeed in obtaining a bachelor’s degree. In an effort to close this guidance gap, then-high school students Karoline and friends Christine Rodriguez and Enoch Jemmott commit to helping their peers navigate the college application process. Stepping Up follows the three young people, trained by College Access: Research & Action (CARA), on their journey as high school peer counselors, even as they themselves undergo the intensive process of applying to schools.


Cassie Schwerner, Karoline Jimenez, Enoch Jemmott, and Juliane Dressner

“If you have a friend of a friend with a kid – even a stranger – remind them that they’re worth something.”

State: 

Is school funding fair? For too many students, the answer is still no.

Since 2010, the Education Law Center has published national report cards on how states are (or aren't) investing in their schools and students. "Is School Funding Fair? A National Report Card" released Wednesday, paints a worrying picture. In most states, ELC has found that public funding for schools is both unfair and inequitable: that is, not only are schools not receiving the funds they need, the schools that need funding the most are the ones with the most dramatic shortfalls.

New York Schools Still Underfunded

New York Governor Cuomo gave his State of the State address on January 13th, mentioning numerous plans to increase educational opportunities for students in the state. He discussed community schools, preK programs, and increasing education funding. However, some education advocates have argued that the proposed funding increase still falls under what New York owes its public schools. One of our grantees, The Alliance for Quality Education, released a new report that talks about the now decade-old Supreme Court case that mandated New York fully fund its education system, and shows what steps are really necessary to ensure that happens.

New York Governor Cuomo gave his State of the State address on January 13th, mentioning numerous plans to increase educational opportunities for students in the state. He discussed community schools, preK programs, and increasing education funding. However, some education advocates have argued that the proposed funding increase still falls under what New York owes its public schools.

State: 

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