Join us at Tuesday’s legislative forum in BurtonsvillePosted: November 18, 2013
East County elected representatives will be available for a public forum Tuesday night at Paint Branch High School in Burtonsville. One Montgomery will be there, advocating school equity as a means for creating a stronger community. Stand up with us.
Several elected officials will be there, including state Senator Karen Montgomery, Delegates Anne Kaiser, Eric Luedtke, and Craig Zucker, County Councilmember and Education Committee chair Valerie Ervin; and Mike Durso of the Board of Education. Larry Edmonds, Northeast Consortium Vice President of the Montgomery County Council of PTAs will be there as well.
While the format has not been announced, we expect time for audience questions and comments. Come ready with something to say. Here are some ideas (bring your own):
1. Why is it acceptable that NEC kids score so much lower than West County kids, year after year after year?
2. Why is it okay that students have such wildly different educational experiences, even within the same school?
3. What is MCPS doing about underperformance in high-poverty schools? Just the Innovation School pilot? How exactly is that going to help us?
4. People over here are starting to use words like “blight.” Does blight cause our schools to do worse? Or do our schools cause blight?
5. It is Board policy to provide more resources to high-poverty schools. Where are the resources?
6. Many NEC and DCC schools receive a subsidy for smaller K-2 class sizes. How much money is that, per school? Is the subsidy paid from taxpayer money, or just Title 1 money?
7. Why doesn’t MCPS subsidize smaller class sizes in Grades 3-5 and 6-8? Or do you have something better to do with the money?
8. What is MCPS doing to see that our high-poverty students have the most experienced teachers with a track record of success? It looks like the most experienced elementary teachers teach where the need is least.
9. Does MCPS have test score targets and a schedule for bringing our schools up to an equitable level of performance?
10. The White Oak Science Gateway seems like an excellent development for the County as a whole. How will it affect the demographic composition of our schools, and our students’ academic success? Has any thought even been given to this?
11. The Delegation seems to have the idea that “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” How can our East County representatives possibly have that idea with respect to East County schools? And in Senator Montgomery and Delegate Kaiser, we have two of the most powerful education representatives in the Legislature. What’s going on?
12. Do you advocate meeting the needs of the East County, or do you discount these needs in favor of others’ interests or some conception of whole County good? If you discount, how do you strike a balance, and who will represent our needs?
The forum will run from 7 to 9pm at Paint Branch High School, 14121 Old Columbia Pike in Burtonsville. Meet us outside at 6:45 and wear a sign or nametag in our orange and blue colors proclaiming “One Montgomery.” You might add a slogan, like “Strong Schools=Strong Communities” or “Equity in Education is a Civil Right.” (We’ll try to bring some extras.)
Our East County neighbors and students need you! We’ll see you on Tuesday.