OTL Campaign Newsletter 
December 5, 2012

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AR OTL Press Conference

  Dr. Sherece West-Scantlebury at AR OTL Summit Responds to Court Ruling That Undermines Education Equity


Solutions Not Suspensions is calling for a moratorium on out-of-school suspensions and the implementation of positive discipline alternatives in schools across the country. Add your voice!


Educate NY Now Express!

Take the "Educate NY Now!" Express to Albany, Dec. 5th!

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Educate NY Now
Today! NY Advocates Ride Buses to Albany Protest!
Advocates from across New York, many of whom we're proud to count among our friends and allies, are boarding Albany-bound buses today heading to an Educate NY Now protest event at the state capitol. Their mission: protest the inequities that are rampant in NY's public school funding system and that are denying children across the state access to a fair and substantive opportunity to learn. For live updates and photos, follow Educate NY Now on Facebook, or check out the #EducateNYNow hashtag on Twitter! Read more>

AR Supreme Court
When Equity Is Under Attack, Arkansas OTL Mobilizes
Equitable funding in the state of Arkansas is in danger following a recent ruling from the state Supreme Court. But advocates and members of the Arkansas Opportunity to Learn Campaign aren't backing down! Already gathered in Little Rock for the AR OTL Summit, advocates held a press conference on Friday (video left) to voice their opposition to the ruling, which undermines decades of work by advocates and policymakers to ensure fair funding for the state's public schools. Read more>

MA Youth Allies Teach Class at Harvard on Organizing
We have to hand it to our youth allies at the Boston Student Advisory Council who take their advocacy work with them everywhere they go, from rallies and press conferences all the way to the halls and classrooms of Harvard University. Several BSAC members recently held a class for students of the university's Graduate School of Education on the successful efforts of BSAC and other allied youth groups across Boston to get student voices incorporated into teacher evaluations. Read more>

OTL Wisconsin
It's Not a Waterbed Without Water
According to Wisconsin teacher Bill Conway, budgets are like waterbeds. Push down in one area of the bed and it will just force another area of the bed to rise. WI Gov. Scott Walker is underfunding education (pushing down on one side of the waterbed) to balance the state budget, thereby raising the amount of funding that communities have to provide to continue educating their children. But what about communities that can't afford to assume the extra costs? Sadly, it's not a waterbed without water. Read more>

The Urgency of Now
Better Data Is First Step to Better Solutions
The U.S. Department of Education has developed a new, uniform method for calculating high school graduation rates that provides a more accurate picture of our nation's dire achievement gaps. The Schott Foundation for Public Education, which has used a similar method for the past decade in its biennial report series on Black males and public education (the latest pictured right), applauds the DOE's new calculation method as a crucial first step toward developing systemic solutions that address the underlying pushout and lockout crises causing those achievement gaps. Read more>


Ohio Communities United
When Communities Speak Out!
A new report from Ohio Communities United (OCU) is a perfect snapshot of what effective parent and community engagement looks like in public education reform. The report gathered input from parents and community members about the policies and practices they would like to see implemented in their schools and in which they want to be involved. Highlighted throughout the report are the powerful, personal stories of individual parents as well as features on programs across the country that have successfully engaged parents and community members to create stronger public schools. Read more>

  • Shocking Details from MS School-to-Prison Pipeline: The story of school discipline gone horribly wrong in Meridian, MS, has doubtless reached every corner of the country. Don't miss this article from Colorlines that documents the terrible conditions students were subject to, most vividly the story of Cedrico Green who was suspended for (we're not kidding) wearing the wrong color socks. Read more>

  •  What Is It Going to Take To Get Fair Funding for All?: Why is the relationship between funding and student achievement so readily ignored by policymakers across the country? In an excellent column for the Washington Post, CT parent advocate Wendy Lecker and former CT House of Representatives member Jonathan Pelto ask what it will take for court rulings, which consistently recognize the need for adequate funding, to become systemic policy. Read more>

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National Opportunity to Learn Campaign
675 Massachusetts Avenue, 8th Floor | Cambridge, MA 02139
www.otlcampaign.org | info@otlcampaign.org | 617-876-7700

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