Pennsylvania's Opportunity Gap
The Urgency of Now, a new report from the Schott Foundation for Public Education, finds that 57 percent of Black male students and 59 percent of Latino male students graduated from Pennsylvania schools in four years, compared to 85 percent of White male students. The report cites the dire "pushout' and "lockout" crises hurting students of color and denying them access to a fair and substantive opportunity to learn. For more info, including state and district data, visit blackboysreport.org.
View the report's Pennsylvania press release here.
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.Read more >
Like most states, Pennsylvania's Constitution requires the state to provide students with access to a basic public education. And, like most states, there's a gap between what resources students need to get that promised basic education and what the state is actually funding. In a letter to Gov. Tom Corbett, education advocates from across the state, including several OTL allies, wrote that "the basic educational needs of Pennsylvania's children are not being met."Read more >
On Thursday night, Philadelphia's School Reform Commission (SRC) voted to close 23 schools, many of which have been chronically underfunded and starved of the resources and opportunities they need to serve their students. Hundreds of organizers and public educaiton advocates, including many OTL allies, staged a massive rally to protest the closures. Click through to read a statement from the Philadelphia Student Union.Read more >
On February 27th, the Opportunity to Learn Campaign will be hosting a webinar on racial justice with the Applied Research Center, an OTL ally. The webinar will provide advocates and organizers with valuable tools for framing and combating racial disparities in our nation's education system. Sign up here!Read more >
Education organizers and advocates from 18 cities across the country made a "Journey for Justice" to the nation's capitol this week to make their case in person against school closures. They testified at a hearing before the US Department of Education and even met with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan! They protested that the DOE's policies that favor closing underperforming schools rather than investing in them is doing irreparable harm to students by disrupting their communities and discriminating against schools serving primarily Black and Latino students.Read more >
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