No Vacation for Northeast Region Charter School Parents

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August 23, 2013 On July 27, six Families That Can parents with a passion for advocacy got together for the first time to launch a leadership team. They will be working to engage parents from every charter school in their respective school districts.

130826_WestSacParents.jpg (Feature: Large Thumbnail)These parents came from Blue Oak and Inspire in Chico Unified, Golden Valley Charter School of Sacramento in San Juan Unified and Sacramento Charter High School in Sacramento City Unified. This group will reach out to parents to host events to increase parent participation at their schools, mobilize parents to advocate for charter school issues and build overall community awareness to dispel the common charter school myths. The Chico families have already launched the Chico Charter Families Alliance and are providing a strong example of what is possible in school districts across the region. Families That Can is providing support to parents who want to form local parent alliances.

At the kick-off meeting, parents heard from a panel of school board members who provided advocacy tips. Jeff Cuneo, Board President of the Sacramento City Unified School District, Ryan Herche, Clerk of the Natomas Unified Board and Linda Hovey of the Chico Unified School District Board, spent an hour in an open dialogue with the parents, sharing their perspectives on what makes an effective advocate. They strongly emphasized the need for parents to form coalitions to increase their visibility and power. Board members also agreed that parents are much more effective advocates if they propose solutions rather than just point out problems. The school board members were very candid about the ways parent advocacy influences their decisions. The parent leaders will be reaching out to more elected officials through face-to-face meetings and school visits over the coming year.

The Parent Leadership Team is looking to grow. Engaged and passionate parents are always welcome and encouraged to join this regional team. You can connect parents directly to Rachel Minnick, Director of Family and Community Engagement for the Northeast and Central Valley region. We look forward to growing a strong team of parent leaders across the region!