Monday, March 18, 2013

The Anti-Stand Group - The Network for Public Education

Diane Ravitch and other noted public education activists have joined together to form a national group, The Network for Public Education.

Here's what they are:

We created the Network for Public Education as a way of connecting groups and individuals around the country who are devoted to preserving public education. This is no small task. We're up against a well-funded corporate reform movement that's waging a slick PR campaign based on misleading information and junk science. But while they may have the billionaires, we have something far more powerful: the authentic voices of teachers, parents and students who understand that public education is a pillar of our democracy.

The NPE website will be at the very center of our efforts. In a matter of weeks, an all-volunteer team has begun to create a site that can function as a clearing house for public education advocates. With the help of our network of academic experts, we're pulling together reliable, easy-to-use fact sheets on all of today's essential education issues. With regular news alerts, we'll make sure you stay up-to-date on the latest developments. We're also drawing upon the experience of grassroots activists across the country to create toolkits that you can use in your own communities. Want to know how to dig for essential information using public records? Need helpsetting up a grassroots organization?

Our hope is that the website becomes a hub, bringing together public education supporters wherever they are. Organizations that affiliate with NFPE, along with education bloggers across the country, will appear on a map so that you can easily connect with advocates near you. We're also creating a network of regional correspondents: people just like you who are reporting on what's happening to public education in their communities-and what they're doing to fight back. If you would like to be a regional correspondent, send an email describing what you would like to report on to this address: allies@networkforpubliceducation.org.

We can't do any of this without you. Our movement is entirely people-powered. We are working teachers and professors, students with full course loads, parents taking care of our children, and concerned citizens navigating our way through a changing world. We need your enthusiasm, your stories and your expertise.Our webmaster is a teacher in Rhode Island, Rob Perry, and the team includes the inimitable Edushyster and Jonathan Pelto. See you at www.networkforpubliceducation.org!

So, to understand, they are not going to have state units. They are trying to be the unifier for various education groups and individuals throughout the country. This could be good and bad depending on what you are trying to accomplish but, I believe that it will be worth saying to elected officials and others, "My group is part of The Network for Public Education."

Here's their first newsletter.

I urge you to become a member.

You do not have to start a group yourself but let your voice be heard through their work. Donate to their work.  Everyone on their board is a volunteer including Diane. So the money donated will go to the work and, from their website, that includes:

We will support candidates who work for evidence-based reforms that will improve our schools and the education of our nation’s children.

Talk money and candidates listen.

This is a clarion call to action to fight off ed reform that is not working for public education in any real, large-scale and sustainable manner. 

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