May 10: PUSD calls for fundraising & advocacy
The Pleasanton school board met last night from 7-11 pm to work through a full agenda (see PDF). This was the first meeting of the school board since the results of the measure E election were finalized, and so much of the discussion focused on how to close the budget gap given that there will be no parcel tax revenue coming in this summer.
The Patch article about the board meeting highlights the parts of the meeting that were focused on fundraising fairly well, but I feel that the article overlooked the other parts of the meeting that emphasized our need to advocate for an adequate state budget for schools to our legislators in Sacramento.
What do I mean by advocacy?
I advocate for public education by speaking up in my community and to my elected representatives on behalf of kids and schools. I speak up in PTA meetings, at school board meetings, and in conversations with other members of my community. I participate in collective action to draw attention to the realities of life in public schools — whether that collective action is a letter-writing campaign, a rally at the state Capitol, or running for office myself.
I recognize the importance of raising funds to save programs that are on the chopping block right now in Pleasanton… but I also recognize the danger of becoming numb to the continuing decline in state funding for public education, and becoming resigned to having our schools weakened, pared down to the bare bones, just because “the economy has taken a downturn.”
I hope that all Pleasanton residents will participate in PPIE’s CORE campaign to support library and technology services in our schools for next fall, and in other fundraising efforts to support class size reduction (email Christina Hicks at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information). I also hope that the advocates for public education in Pleasanton and in California will continue to speak up and take action collectively so that our kids get the support they need from our legislators.