Thanks to all who came out to our forum last Wednesday to hear about the issues we are working on this year.
The Fair Tax
RYH is committed to working towards improved funding of our schools. As you know, our schools have been hit with harmful budget cuts this year impacting the majority of district schools and weakening the quality of education provided for many students across Chicago. Another 94 teachers and support staff were laid off on Friday. DNA info LInk The cuts just keep coming.
RYH does not believe that there is one quick fix to solving the budget crisis. All avenues need to be examined. The deficit for next year is close to a billion dollars again and while the city claims that pension reform is the only solution, it will not fix the budget crisis without much needed revenue. RYH has pushed for TIF surplus relief as a stop-gap measure and we are now working to support the Fair Tax Campaign at the state level with A Better Illinois. Over 100 organizations are working on this and we are looking for parent leaders who want to mobilize around the need for a graduated income tax which would bring in much needed revenue for education and other services. The goal of this campaign is to get a referendum on the ballot in November 2014 to change the current flat tax structure in the state Constitution. To achieve this goal, 3/5 of the legislature must vote in May to allow this referendum. Can you help in pass this petition around and share our factsheet?
Check out our Fair Tax Fact Sheet and Share with your contacts!
Sign the petition at a Better Illinois and share with others who want fully funded schools
Standardized Testing and inBloom
Raise Your Hand is part of the More than a Score Coalition to try and bring attention to the overuse and misuse of standardized testing in our district. While CPS made an announcement that there would be a big reduction in testing, we have heard many reports that students are taking the same number of tests as last year with some schools adding quarterly benchmarks that they didn’t have last year.
Additionally, our state is about to sign on to something called inBloom, in which our students' private data including health, disability, grades, discipline records and much more will be collected into a database at the state level. InBloom was created by Rupert Murdoch and is funded by Bill Gates. Most states that agreed to participate in this have since opted out. Illinois is one of only 3 states that remains a participant. We believe that parents, at a minimum, should have the right to opt out of this, but that option does not exist. Sign and Share this inBloom petition!
There will also be a Forum on this issue on 11/21 with national data privacy expert and founder of Class Size Matters, Leonie Haimson. See details here:https://www.facebook.com/events/169178626612226/?ref=br_tf
RYH Standardized Testing Factsheet
Email us if you want to get involved: firstname.lastname@example.org