(February 22, 2012) All across the country, states have cut funding for public education. In some cases, the cuts are due to the recession and reduced resources in those states overall. In other cases, inequitable and poorly structured education finance systems have led to insufficient funds for educating students. Aurelio M. Montemayor, M.Ed.,andLaurie Posner, MPA,profile an IDRA initiative in
called Fair Funding Now! that is mobilizing statewide grassroots leadership to present the case for equitable, appropriate school funding and to develop local, regional and statewide strategies for securing equity for all children. They also describe some online tools the initiative is using that can serve as a model for groups in other states. Send comments to
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* Aurelio shares the backstory to the Fair Funding Now! initiative.
* Laurie describes the IDRA Texas School Funding Map online interactive tool, and reads some of the stories that families, teachers, and community members have submitted about how they have been affected personally by the state’s funding cuts.
* Aurelio talks about the danger of not equipping citizens and communities with information about the “draconian cuts” made by the legislature.
* Aurelio and Laurie discuss the equity gap between the poorest and richest school districts in
, and lament that the funding cuts actually exacerbated those pre-equisting inequities.
* Aurelio explains the “domino effect” that school layoffs can have on the entire community, and he encourages listeners and the public to make use of social media and online tools to distribute and share information.
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