The Political Action Committee of the MEA is chaired by Tom Lynch and Shane Rozamus.
This committee interviews candidates for local offices and makes recommendations to the Executive Board. Committee meetings are held at various times throughout the year, depending on political season. Please refer to the calendar for meeting dates and times.
The PAC often holds fundraising activities throughout the year to build our political action account. This account is used to contribute to candidates who stand with MEA on education issues, and who MEA recommends. Dues dollars do not go toward Political Action.
Think Education: The MEA asks for all members to contribute $5 each year to build the PAC fund. For every $5 donated, the members name goes into a box used for multiple raffles throughout the year.
Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools (AROS) News:
“Stunning” – Jan Resseger
“Get out of the line to buy school supplies and get in line to demand the state fully fund public schools.” – Andre Perry
Confronting the Education Debt – a new report from the Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools – identifies over $580 billion in authorized federal funding to support public schools, particularly in Black, Brown and low-income communities, that has not been appropriated over the last 13 years alone.
Confronting the Education Debt identifies five policy choices, made by elected officials at all levels of government, that contribute to the under-funding of our public schools:
1. * Federal under-funding of Title I and IDEA;
2. * State and local school funding formulas that inherently cause inequities in school funding;
3. * Tax codes and corporate subsidies that help the rich get richer, while draining public budgets of much-needed funds;
4. * Rising investments in corrections and police—including investments that disproportionately criminalize Black and Brown students and contribute to the School-to-Prison Pipeline;
5. * Privatization, including charter schools and voucher programs.
The report was released yesterday (September 12th) at an event held in conjunction with the Congressional Black Caucus Annual Legislative Conference at the D.C. Convention Center. It was a spirited event that included speakers from labor and community organizations. We were thrilled to hear from Virginial Congressman Bobby Scott, who has been a stalwart supporter of public education and has introduced bills each year calling for billions in new funding for public schools. Also speaking were Advancement Project director Judith Brown Dianis, Alliance for Education Justice director Jonathan Stith, AFT President Randi Weingarten, Center for Popular Democracy’s Jennifer Epps-Addison, SEIU’s Executive Vice President Heather Conroy, NEA President Lily Eskelsen Garcia, Schott Foundation President John Jackson, Coalition for Community Schools Director Jose Munoz, Journey for Justice representative Zakiyah Ansari and Denisha Jones with the Badass Teachers Association.
The report is getting some attention. The Young Turks published a story about the report, along with two videos (see them here, and here) that are gaining tens of thousands of views and hundreds of shares. The report was also covered in the Hechinger Report, and by bloggers Jan Resseger, Jeremy Mohlerand Jeff Bryant.
The next steps are to continue driving out the report and pressing the narrative that public schools in Black and Brown communities are broke on purpose!!
(Photos from top: Representative Bobby Scott, AROS Director Keron Blair, Advancement Project Director Judith Brown Dianis)
“This report and its findings should outrage and push every parent, community member and educator to get informed, active and engaged in the education justice movement, especially with the midterm elections just around the corner.” – Zakiyah Ansari
The Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools is calling on Congress, as well as state and local legislative bodies, to make a new commitment to fund the schools all our students deserve. These steps would get us started:
1. * Fully fund Title I and IDEA;
2. * Dedicate federal, state and local funding to the creation of 25,000 Sustainable Community Schools;
3. * Establish a new focus on equity at the U.S. Department of Education;
4. * Make the wealthy, and large corporations pay their fair share of taxes;
5. * Divest from the school-to-prison pipeline;
6. * Place an immediate moratorium on the Federal Charter Schools Program, which funds new charter start-ups regardless of need or invitation from the communities affected.
Together, we can confront the Education Debt. The time to start is now. Download the full report and additional resources from: http://educationdebt.reclaimourschools.org This website includes some organizing tools, a social media toolkit, quotes from other education justice activists and organizers, and more. Please help us drive this message out. Share this e-blast with your friends!