March 2011 Issue:
Resources:
By Molly A. Hunter
What kind of society turns against its own school teachers? Denigrating and demoralizing our teachers seems a weird priority. This special edition newsletter features short articles from a principal, a teacher, a group of parents, and a former teacher.
By Anthony Cody
A few decades ago politicians decided that DRUGS were the cause of all of our woes in the cities. Drugs were the cause of crime, and destroyed our neighborhoods. So our political leaders declared a war on drugs. Drugs and crime were symptoms of hopelessness, however, not the cause. Now our politicians and their billionaire sponsors are leading us on another phony moral crusade. But instead of a war on drugs, we have a war on teachers.
By Stan Karp
Far too many people are bashing teachers and public schools. The increasingly polarized education policy debate is not just about whether teachers feel the sting of public criticism or whether school budgets suffer another round of cuts. It's not even about the hot-button issues getting all the attention like merit pay or charter schools.
What's at stake is more basic: Whether the right to a free public education for all children will survive as a fundamental democratic promise in our society, and whether the schools and districts needed to provide it are going to survive as public institutions.
By George Wood
I've been a school principal for 19 years, two of which I spent away from my beloved secondary school in Ohio to start an independent school in Los Angeles. The school in Ohio has a negotiated agreement and a teachers' union; the one in LA did not. I prefer the union and the contract.
By Parents Across America
All over the country, from Wisconsin, to Rhode Island, to New York, a fierce assault has been launched against our teachers -- against their right to negotiate for better working conditions, for seniority protections, and against arbitrary layoffs without due process.
As parents, we understand that experience matters when it comes to effective teaching; (see our fact sheet on this issue). We also realize that in many cases, better working conditions also means better learning conditions for our children.
A remand court in New Jersey ruled on March 22 that school funding cuts left New Jersey's schools unable to provide all children the "thorough and efficient" education required by the state constitution
The supreme courts of Washington and South Dakota will rule on appeals in educational opportunity and adequacy/equity cases. Plaintiffs won in the trial court in Washington, and defendants won in the trial court in South Dakota.
Plaintiffs still await a decision from the South Carolina Supreme Court in the educational opportunity case Abbeville v. State, which was argued before the court over two years ago.
March 28, 2011 -- Northeastern Law School's Program on Human Rights and the Global Economy presents The Right to Education, including remarks on school finance equity by Education Justice's Molly A. Hunter, Boston, MA.
April 17-18, 2011 -- Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Conference, including remarks on education finance equity by Education Law Center's Executive Director, David Sciarra, Winston-Salem State University, Winston-Salem, NC.
April 8, 12, and 21, 2011 -- National education Equity and Excellence Commission will (1) host a session at a Native American conference on education, April 8, to hear from tribal leaders; (2) hold a town hall meeting in Philadelphia, April 12; and (3) host a meeting in San Jose, CA, April 21 at 3:30 PM to receive prepared testimony and hold a town hall meeting from 6 to 8 PM, also in San Jose.
Send announcements of upcoming events for the Education Justice calendar to: info@educationjustice.org

The test of the morality of a society is what it does for its children.

-- Dietrich Bonhoeffer


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State-by-state information on school funding litigation, past and pending, can be found at this web page.


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