Important

National NAACP Leadership, Charter and Public School Advocates to Discuss Impact of Charters on Underfunded School Districts

ORLANDO, FL – A new NAACP task force studying education quality will hold its third of at least seven national hearings on the impact of charter schools on underfunded school districts. The task force will take input from advocates, teachers, parents, and policy experts on Friday.

The National Task Force for Quality Education, along with Florida State Conference of the NAACP, will host its latest in a series of national public hearings concerning public education quality and the impact of charter schools on underfunded school districts from 2 p.m. – 7p.m. on Friday, Jan 27. “In our communities all around the nation, public education has always been the fountain of opportunity; we, unintentionally let it run dry,” said NAACP CEO and President Cornell William Brooks. “Ensuring that underfunded districts are not disparately impacted by the growth of charters or privatization has always been a priority for the NAACP.”
NAACP Board Chair Roslyn Brock sees these hearings as a continuation of the NAACP’s push for equal opportunity.

“The NAACP historically and today remains in the forefront of the struggle for equal opportunity and advocates for free high-quality, fully funded and equitable public education for all children,” said Chairwoman Brock, Chairman of the National NAACP Board of Directors. “We are dedicated to eliminating the severe racial inequities that continue to plague the education system.”

This event is the third hearing organized by the NAACP’s National Task Force for Quality. The task force was created in October after board members approved a moratorium on expanding public charter school funding until safeguards are in place to provide better transparency regarding accountability, and to prevent cases of fraud and mismanagement.

The hearing for the NAACP Taskforce Florida Hearing on Quality Education and Hosted by Florida State Conference NAACP will be on Friday, January 27, 2017 at the Rosen Centre Hotel, 9780 International Drive, Orlando, FL beginning at 2 p.m.

The first task force hearing was held in early December in New Haven, CT and the second on Jan. 10 in Memphis, TN. Future hearings are planned in Detroit, MI; Los Angeles, CA; New York, NY and New Orleans. Educators, administrators, parents, students, elected officials, and education policy experts from throughout Florida, and NAACP officials from around the nation will participate in the hearing.

“The issue of school funding and accountability are not just Florida or Orlando issues, but issues which affect our communities around the nation. We owe it to our communities to take a deep look at the issues facing public schools as well as the pros and cons of charter schools,” said Adora Obi Nweze, NAACP Task Force member and President of the NAACP’s Florida State Conference.

Invited key participants include:
• Chancellor Herschel Lyons, Florida Department of Education
• Randi Weingarten , President, American Federation of Teachers
• James Hare, President and Chief Technology Officer , Wayne State University Research Park Detroit, Michigan
• Dr Karega Rausch, Vice President , Research and Evaluation NACSA, Chicago, IL
• Hilary Shelton, Senior Vice President, NAACP Washington Bureau
• Victor Goode, Interim Director, NAACP Education Department
• Rev/Dr. Russell Meyer , Executive Director, Florida Council of Churches
• Robert Runcie, Superintendent Broward County Schools, Broward County, FL
• Joanne McCall, President, Florida Education Association ( Affiliate of AFT and NEA)
• Atty. Jodi Siegel, Southern Legal Counsel
• Dr. Rosa Castro Feinberg, Florida League of United Latin American Citizens ( LULAC)
• Brendien Mitchell, Member, NAACP National Board of Directors; President , Youth and College Division FL State Conference
• Jianna Green , Former, Charter and Public School Student
• Chenoah Rucker, President , Marion County Youth Council Ocala, FL
• David L. Watkins, EdS, Director, Equity and Academic Attainment Broward County Schools , Broward County , FL
• Dr. Amanda Wilkerson, Post Doctoral Associate Urban Teacher Initiatives Program Director College of Education and Human Performance University of Central Florida

National NAACP Leadership and other notables include:
• Roslyn Brock, Chairman, NAACP National Board of Directors
• Adora Obi Nweze, Member, NAACP National Board of Directors, President, NAACP Florida State Conference, Member, NAACP Quality Education Taskforce
• Minister Jabari Paul, Member , NAACP Florida Quality Education Hearing Planning Committee
• Kran Riley, Area Director, NAACP FL State Conference
• Atty. David Honig, Special Counsel, NAACP FL State Conference
• Dr. Barbara Jenkins School Superintendent, Orange County Schools
• Bruce Antoine, FL State Representative District 46, Orlando, FL
• Alice Huffman , Member, NAACP National Board of Directors ; President, NAACP California-Hawaii State Conference; Chair, NAACP Quality Education Taskforce
• Leon W. Russell, Vice Chairman, NAACP National Board of Directors
• Presiding- Dr. Shirley B. Johnson, Chair, Education Committee , NAACP FL State Conference; President, NAACP Miami-Dade Branch

“Our goal is bringing people from our community together from both sides, so we can better understand the impact of charters on school funding and be sure that we have a clear say in the ways that decisions about public schools are made,” said Alice Huffman, chairman of the task force and president of the California State Conference of the NAACP.

Visitors who wish to speak at the hearing are asked to pre-register before the session begins. To accommodate the public, individual speakers may be asked to adhere to a time limit or to appoint a representative to speak on behalf of a group.

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