Mass school closings have become a hallmark of today's dominant education policy agenda. But rather than helping students, these closures disrupt whole communities. And as U.S. Department of Education data suggests, the most recent rounds of mass closings in Chicago, New York City and Philadelphia disproportionately hurt Black and low-income students.
What can you do to end these discriminatory and unacceptable school closures?
In Lost Opportunity: A 50 State Report on the Opportunity to Learn in America, the Schott Foundation for Public Education establishes a metric for determining the opportunity to learn for students. Providing a state-by-state comparison of both academic proficiency (percentage of students scoring at or above proficient on the eighth grade NAEP reading exam) and equity (as measured by the Schott Foundation’s Opportunity to Learn Index, or OTLI), Lost Opportunity identifies the four baseline minimum resources that are necessary for a child – regardless of race, ethnicity, or socioeconomic status – to have a fair and substantive Opportunity to Learn.
In the United States, every student should have the equal right to a high-quality education. But as our most recent data demonstrates, for far too many students, quality and equity are aspirations, not realities. Few states are providing public school educations that result in academic proficiency for students. And even fewer states are providing access to a high-quality education to all students, particularly those from historically disadvantaged groups.
Philadelphia students headed back to school this month is the wake of yet another bruising political battle over how to fund the city's schools.
Advocates and organizers in Philadelphia came close to scoring a victory for the city's public schools – only to have legislative tinkering get in the way.
Philadelphia's public schools are reeling from years of underfunding, devastating budget cuts and the mass closure of 23 schools last year.
Govs. Corbett and Christie Are Coming to Philadelphia.
Join Us for a Rally to Demand Full Funding, Local Control!
At the Union League at 4pm on Monday, June 9th
The following post originally appeared on the Philadelphia Student Union (PSU) website and is reposted here with permission. PSU is an OTL Campaign ally.
Jackson Elementary parents give statement to
the press. Photo via Philly.com