This site aims to inform and mobilize Beverly parents to take an active role in all issues related to the funding and operation of the city's schools. It was launched in the spring of 2008, when the city saw its first-ever override attempt fail, followed by the closure of a nearly-new elementary school. Subsequent years have seen further cuts that have led to larger class sizes across the district. While the opening of an impressive new high school and plans to replace the city's aging middle school give us reason to be optimistic, the school community must be ever vigilant in demanding appropriate school funding by city and state governments, and better community communications from the district and School Committee.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Waiting for "Superman"

My name is Julie DeSilva. I have been invited by SBS to post about education issues from time to time.

Recently I attended the Massachusetts premiere of the documentary Waiting for "Superman." Kris Silverstein and Deb Ploszay attended with me. The next day we shared some of our thoughts with the City Council, the School Committee, school administrators, and many concerned Beverly parents.

Following is an email we sent to this group to give more information about the movie, to share some information that was shared with us, and to keep the conversation going about this movie and the state of public education today. I hope you will see the movie and continue the conversation here!
We are happy to have heard from many of you with questions, comments, and information sharing regarding our thoughts after seeing Waiting for "Superman." First, many of you wanted to know where the movie is playing. It will be playing at Hollywood Hits in Danvers starting October 8.

For those of you who don't know, the movie looks at particular children in New York, LA, and DC. Fortunately for our children public education in these cities doesn't look the same here in Beverly. In Beverly the problems are fewer and different but the big problem is the same. The way we fund public education doesn't work and is unsustainable. We want to be clear that we left that movie feeling grateful for the education offered students here in Beverly. We want to see the quality of education preserved and enhanced here, and we want our kind of quality education for all children across the nation!

Attached are three documents:
  • a Public Education Funding brief from the Mass Budget and Policy Center—this is long and exciting reading, but even if you just flip through the figures, you will get the picture
  • a toolkit from the National School Boards Association
  • some talking points specifically created for this movie from the American Association of School Administrators
You should also read about a success story right here in Massachusetts that shows real change can happen through determination, teamwork, and a focus on the basics.

No comments: