My daughter and I recently visited Harrisburg PA to attend the Campaign for Fair Education Funding Rally. It was a day to allow us to join forces with people from all over Pennsylvania and have our voices heard. We stood on the steps of the rotunda and listened to various educators and students speak about what a Basic Education Funding formula would mean for Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania is one of threes states that is missing this formula and as a result our children suffer.
The Campaign for Fair Education Funding proposes a student-based, long-term, predictable funding system. This would equitably distribute sufficient resources and ensure students meet academic standards. We all want our students to be prepared for success as adults. The proposed formula is based on real cost, addressing student challenges like poverty and English proficiency. The proposal also considers district factors like size and scarcity, local tax effort and district wealth and charter school enrollment.
Advocating with Friends
This was my daughter's first time in the Capitol building, and she was excited as she plans to run for President of the United States but knows that she has to first get involved on the local level. She was excited to be advocating on a subject that she cares about. At the age of 9, she knows that all students should have a quality education no matter where they live. We stopped by State Representative Daylin Leach's office, but unfortunately he was not in. He was preparing to go to session, and we hoped that he saw/heard the rally and would make the right decision. Either way we left a letter addressed to him asking that he support this campaign. We are blessed in that we don't live in a district affected by poverty but the lack of a fair budget hurts everyone. Students across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania are not meeting academic standards to prepare them for post-secondary success.
Throughout the building there were not only other people visiting their representatives but signs and shirts to show support of this campaign. Pennsylvania wants action on school funding as is evident by the statewide polls taken this year by Franklin & Marshall University and Mercyhurst Center for Applied Politics. This poll showed that education should be the top priority of state leaders.
It is not too late for you to get involved and show Pennsylvania kids that their education matters. Here's how:
Contact your State Legislators and tell them to give students in every school a fair shot at academic success
Speak out on social media. Follow the Campaign for Fair Funding Facebook and Twitter pages.
Allow your child to share their story using Hear Me. Hear Me, part of Carnegie Mellon University’s Create Lab, Hear Me amplifies kids' voices using media and technology to create a world where kids are heard, acknowledged and understood, giving them the power to inspire social change. Recently, Hear Me interviewed students across Pennsylvania and produced a podcast about their thoughts on the current state of public school education funding.
Disclosure: I’m teaming up with the Campaign for Fair Education Funding to speak out for students across Pennsylvania. Although I am receiving some form of compensation, all opinions remain my own. #FairFundingPA