PAA Action News
Aug. 29, 2013

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PAA Action Alert

Tell Congress to listen to Arne --
when he tells them to listen to parents

A couple of days ago, Education Secretary Arne Duncan wrote an essay in the Washington Post about the need for an improved ESEA, declaring that:
"In the months ahead, I will ask Congress to listen to those doing the real work of education change. Principals, teachers, governors, state education chiefs, superintendents, parents and students themselves know what is and isn't working. They can guide us to a better law."

So, since Arne is going to stand up for us to be heard, let's make sure we are talking!

Now is a good time to call the home office

PAA has been communicating our message clearly to Congress on ESEA already, but the next few days - before your Senators and Congressional representatives head back to D.C. on Sept. 10 - would be a great time to reach out to them in person or by phone. 

Tell them that parents want a new ESEA to include:
  • a focus on providing sufficient and equitable resources in all public schools, so that every child can receive a high-quality education,
  • improving schools rather than closing them, using evidence-based solutions backed by parents and other stakeholders,
  • less standardized testing and more reliable accountability and assessment practices,
  • programs that encourage the retention of professional, experienced teachers,
  • a full range of parent involvement opportunities, including a stronger, democratically-elected parent voice in decision making at the school, district, state, and national levels, and
  • the right of parents to opt their children out of standardized tests.
Arne call parents "truth-tellers"

Of course, Duncan's call for Congress to listen to parents and others who do the work is couched in code words like "accountability," "flexibility" and "raising the bar" that just mean more privatization and high-stakes testing, which most parents oppose.

At the 2011 Mom Congress, Duncan urged parents to advocate for and demand excellence from schools. "You guys have got to be truth-tellers," he urged. "You have to ask the really hard questions."

OK. Here's a question for Secretary Duncan: Why do
you ignore what parents have been telling you and your administration for years?

It's time for Arne to walk the walk, and that's the truth!

Have a happy, safe Labor Day, everyone!

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our overall goals of progressive, positive education reform and more parent input in education policy making, we invite you to affiliate with us if you are an existing group, or to form a new PAA chapter. The more of us there are, the stronger our voice will be at every level. Here's how!
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