Pennsylvania’s charter schools have a terrible track record of student performance. The latest national research found that charter students cover 29 fewer days of reading material on average, and 50 fewer days of math than traditional public schools. That puts Pennsylvania in the bottom three states in the country. [Stanford CREDO, National Charter School Study 2013] The state’s cyber charter schools are particularly problematic, with not a single one making Adequate Yearly Progress last year. [PA Dept. of Education, Charter School PSSA Performance] Pittsburgh has some high-performing charters, but the state is also forcing us to keep others open that are clearly not serving our students well. See: http://yinzercation.wordpress.com/2013/10/…
The bottom line is, we should be able to give ALL our students the things good charter schools offer to just a select few: smaller class sizes, flexible teaching, innovative curricula, art every day, and more.
Great Public Schools (GPS) Pittsburgh is a coalition of community, faith, and labor organizations. To say it is "union backed" is purposefully misleading and divisive -- and leaves out the 50+ congregations that belong to PA Interfaith Impact Network (PIIN), which is a part of this coalition. It leaves out the thousands of volunteer parents, students, and community members who are standing up for public schools through movements like Yinzercation and community groups like OnePittsburgh and Action United. And it leaves out the *seven* colleges and universities from our region who co-sponsored this event (that alone is almost unheard of). This is truly a grassroots, education justice movement -- and as Dr. Ravitch explained Monday when she was here in Pittsburgh, "the tide is turning." Nearly 1,000 people came out to hear her speak and are standing up for public education.
There *is* a way to fight back against this madness, and we're doing it right here in Southwest Pennsylvania through a grassroots movement supporting our public schools. We are all volunteer parents, students, teachers, and concerned community members.
Join us online at Yinzercation.wordpress.com
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