OTL Campaign Newsletter 
April 5, 2012
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Raise Your Hand Campaign Examines Opportunity in New Orleans 

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OTL HIGHLIGHTS
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Advocacy Wins $805 Million Increase in NY Education  Budget
Five years after the landmark Campaign for Fiscal Equity ruling in New York, parents and education advocates are pushing the state to make good on its promise to invest $5.5 billion in classroom funding aid for high-needs schools and districts. Thanks to organizing across the state, $805 million will be restored to NY's 2012-13 school year budget. Read more >

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OTL - Wisconsin Kicks Off in Madison!
Education advocates gathered last week in Wisconsin for the state's first Opportunity to Learn conference, kicking off the statewide OTL campaign for equitable funding and resources for students and schools. Advocates discussed fair funding policies, tax reform, and communication and political strategies.  Read more>

metro protests
MA Students Rally for Affordable Public Transportation
Proposed fare hikes and changes in the service schedule for Boston public transportation - the "T" - will have a serious impact on students' ability to travel to and from school, city libraries and other educational opportunities across Boston. In rallies organized by the Youth Affordabili(T) Coalition, the Boston Student Advisory Council and Youth on Board, students across the city are organizing protests for affordable public transportation for young people, elderly, disabled and low-income individuals.
Read more>

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Gambling on National Security
In the Huffington Post, Schott Foundation President & CEO John Jackson
reaffirms that privatization of our schools isn't the answer, contrary to a new report written by Joel Klein and Condoleezza Rice. The report recognizes that failing public schools could spell disaster for our national security by endagering our nation's economic vitality, competitiveness and ability to staff our military and diplomatic corps. But privatization and competition don't provide the systemic, scalable or sustainable solutions that our public schools need.  Read more>

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DOJ Expanding Research into Discipline Policies
The U.S. Department of Justice is expanding its Field-Initiated Research and Evaluation (FIRE) program to support studies focused on school discipline, the impact of zero-tolerance policies, and why students of color are disproportionately affected by harsh discipline policies. The DOJ is currently accepting applications for FY 2012 FIRE research projects. The submission deadline is Saturday, May 7th.
Read more>


RESOURCES

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Raise Your Hand Campaign - New Orleans Report
This student-led research initiative pulls together student testimony and research from six different New Orleans high schools to examine the opportunities, or lack thereof, available to the city's students. The report examines everything from teaching quality and student support services to physical environment and school food. Each school recieves a report card and recommendations for improvement. Altogether, the report is a stunning example of students organizing to make their voices heard in the education reform debate. Read more>


IN THE NEWS
  • Smarter Discipline in Schools: In a column for the Denver Post, Ricardo Martinez, Co-Diretor of Padres & Jovenes Unidos, criticizes Colorado's zero-tolerance discipline policies for administering serious punishments for minor infractions and thereby pushing students out of the classroom and negatively affecting their education. Read more>

  • Report calls on CA to Protect Early Education Funding: A new report from Fight Crime: Invest in Kids California warns about the long-term criminal justice costs of cutting funding for early childhood education programs.  Read more>


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