We are calling for:
- NO CUTS TO PUBLIC EDUCATION—many schools, particularly in low-income neighborhoods and communities of color have been short-changed for decades. The federal government must continue to play a critical role in ensuring fairness and enforcing civil rights in our public schools. No cuts to the federal education budget should be approved.
- FULL FUNDING FOR PUBLIC SCHOOLS. Corporate profits are skyrocketing and billionaires are getting richer because of tax breaks that deny much needed revenues to cities, states and the federal government. Instead of taking funds away from our public schools, we should invest to reduce class size, increase parent involvement, ensure access to a wide range of course offerings, fully resource school libraries and technology centers and provide wrap-around services for students who need them. The wealthy should pay their fair share to ensure that our children have the schools they need and deserve.
- NO VOUCHERS. A truly public education is only way to ensure accountability, transparency and equity for all kids. We have a collective responsibility to provide great public schools for every student in America. Taking already-scarce funding away from public schools and giving it to private schools does not improve the quality of education or ensure better outcomes for students. We must unequivocally say “NO” to vouchers.
- NO EXPANSION OF CHARTER SCHOOLS. The federal government should not be funding charter school expansion without accountability, without mitigating the financial impact on public school districts and without the input or invitation of local communities.
- AN END TO THE SCHOOL-TO-PRISON PIPELINE. Our education policies must stop criminalizing young African American and Latino students. Congress should reject the President’s proposed elimination of programs that improve school climate and encourage restorative practices. The Department of Education should fully restore regulations protecting the civil rights of students of color, students with disabilities and LGBT students.
Fight Back this summer by demanding that Congress say NO to the Trump/DeVos agenda and YES to strong, fully resourced public schools in every community.
Members of Congress will be in their districts during August, and students will be going back to school—providing opportunities for speaking out and taking action. Local groups should use this opportunity to fight for local demands, in addition to our national ones.
Here’s the organizing plan. Across the country, join AROS, People’s Action and #WeChoose for:
- National Days on the Doors, where community members and educators join together to knock on doors and let people in our neighborhoods know how they can join the fight against the Trump/DeVos budget and for public schools.
- Putting education on the agenda at Congressional town halls: Members of Congress will be on recess during the month of August. Educators, parents and students will be at their town halls or hold meetings with their Senators and Representatives to ask: “which side are you on?”
- Actions at congressional or federal offices: Organized actions at district offices, regional offices of the U.S. Department of Education, rallies, vigils, occupations.
- “Critical Conversations” in our communities: Parents and students of the #WECHOOSE campaign are leading “critical conversations” to engage community members and their elected officials in discussions to about the Trump/DeVos agenda, the longstanding sabotage of our schools, and in organizing efforts to win 10,000 Sustainable Community Schools.
- Betsy DeVos Watch: Betsy DeVos—the most unqualified Secretary of Education in history—will be traveling the country, perhaps as schools open for the new year. AROS coalitions will be there whenever we can to remind her that our choice is a public education system that serves all children.
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