Standing Together for Strong Community Schools

Tennesseans invested in local public education.


Join Us. We Are Ready to Advocate for Public Education in 2014.

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The Tennessee General Assembly is back in session for 2014 and education legislation is front and center affecting all Tennesseans. We are back and ready to get to work educating legislators, parents, and citizens across the state about the dire consequences of legislation, pushed by special interest groups, that will negatively impact our public schools, teachers and tax dollars. We will also be sharing legislation that will help public education and return the parent and teacher voice to decision making. We have been quietly building our state network over the last half of 2013 and are looking to begin a new initiative. More and more people across Tennessee are speaking out against mismanaged, underfunded reform mandates.

So to renew our focus and bring commitment to a larger group of state-wide activists we have joined under a non-profit called Tennesseans Reclaiming Educational Excellence or TREE. We hope you will continue to support our effort to speak for public school parents, teachers and advocates. Please follow TREE as we work with the General Assembly to help educate on the perspective of the real impact on public school reform.

TREE has a broader focus beyond the state authorizer and voucher bills that ST4SCS focused on last year. Read about that focus HERE. We will also be sharing our email list with TREE and this ST4SCS site will stand as a reference point. We will begin putting our volunteer energy into TREE’s message. We look forward to working with TREE and all Tennesseans to be a voice that is “ROOTED IN FIGHTING FOR STRONG, EQUITABLE PUBLIC EDUCATION AND IS COMMITTED TO GROWING CHILD-CENTERED EDUCATION POLICY.”

Thank you for supporting us and encouraging us to grow our effort.

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Call to Action: New Charter Authorizer Amendment

Tomorrow, Tuesday, the House Education Committee could vote on the State Charter Authorizer bill. It is amended as an appointed panel to approve all charter appeals from ANY CITY STATE-WIDE. Your cities fund a majority of the cost of educating a student. Nashville alone pays 2/3rd of the cost for charter schools. A state authorizer could approve a school your city does not want AND maintain control of that school but not fully fund it. Elected school boards will have NO control over charters they are forced to fund. Call Speaker Beth Harwell’s office Tuesday morning and tell her NO State Authorizer and NO to “State Charter Panel” bill House Ammendment 702! (615) 741-0709


Mark your Calendar!

If you can, please attend the House Education Committee meeting at Legislative Plaza, room 16 at 12 PM on Tuesday, 3/5. They will be hearing the charter authorizer bill and voucher bill (with a likely amendment to expand the program) and we need as many people there as possible. We had a great turnout at the Education Committee meeting on February 19th–let’s try to pack the room out this time! Our voices are being heard–this is not a lost cause, so we must keep fighting. And please keep contacting the Committee Members and signing our petitions. (See posts below for links.) Hope to see you on Tuesday!


Urgent Call to Action! Call Beth Harwell.

URGENT CALL TO ACTION! The state charter authorizer bill (HB0702) is scheduled to be voted on during the full House Education Committee at 12 PM on Tuesday, February 19th which is TOMORROW!!!!. The best chance we have of defeating this measure is stopping it in committee, so we need your help:

1) This is Rep. Beth Harwell’s bill–she just asked Rep. White to sponsor it. Today is a Holiday so the Legislators will not be in their offices but you can call Tuesday morning before the House Education Committee meeting to tell her that you are against a state charter authorizer. (Her phone number is 615-741-0709.) If you happen to be one of her constituents, be sure to to let whomever you speak to know. (You can also email her at speaker.beth.harwell@capitol.tn.gov, but phone calls will likely have more of an impact right now. Let’s keep her phone ringing off the hook!)

2) Attend the committee hearing on Tuesday, 2/19 at noon. It will be in House Hearing Room 16 at Legislative Plaza in Nashville. We will be passing out stickers so you can be visually identified as opponents of the charter authorizer law. Let’s pack out the room! (By the way, thanks to all of your emails and phone calls, we are on the agenda to speak before the full committee during this meeting!)

3) Call and/or email the members of the full House Education Committee and tell them you are against the bill. There emails are as follows: Rep.Harry.Brooks@capitol.tn.gov, Rep.John.DeBerry@capitol.tn.gov, Rep.Joe.Pitts@capitol.tn.gov, Rep.Harold.Love@capitol.tn.gov, Rep.John.Forgety@capitol.tn.gov, Rep.Roger.Kane@capitol.tn.gov, Rep.Debra.Moody@capitol.tn.gov, Rep.Dawn.White@capitol.tn.gov, Rep.Mark.White@capitol.tn.gov, rep.kevin.brooks@capitol.tn.gov, rep.jim.coley@capitol.tn.gov, rep.lois.deberry@capitol.tn.gov, rep.bill.dunn@capitol.tn.gov, rep.ron.lollar@capitol.tn.gov, rep.ryan.williams@capitol.tn.gov. You can find their phone numbers at the following link: http://www.capitol.tn.gov/house/committees/education.html

They are hearing us–so keep speaking up! Thanks to each of you for your support. Upward. Onward. Together!