Attend Advocacy Day on May 8 and Celebrate National Charter Schools Week

April 17, 2013

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National Charter Schools Week, held May 5-11, 2013, is an opportunity for charter supporters, leaders, teachers, parents and students to continue to raise public awareness, organize local activities and outreach, and focus on advocacy issues impacting charters. Our priorities are to fight for fair funding for charter schools, facilities funding, and to protect charter autonomy. While we are fortunate to have a governor who believes charter schools are an important choice, there are 120 legislators who consider bills before they reach his desk.

It is important that legislators know about charter schools, are familiar with charter schools in their district, and hear how charter schools are making a real difference for students - especially those with the greatest challenges.

The CCSA government affairs team looks after the interests of our members and ensures that charter leaders are engaged at key points - when a bill will be considered by the legislature or as policy is being created by the state Department of Education. At the State Capitol, critical decisions are made by people who may know very little about charter schools. Sharing your perspective with state legislators illustrates how proposed legislation would impact your school, and the students and families you serve. This simple action makes a big difference in which bills become laws - and now is the time to do it!

Join us at the State Capitol for the 20th Anniversary Advocacy Day, during National Charter Schools Week. Meet your local assemblymember and senator; hear from the chair of the Assembly Education Committee; and enjoy lunch with charter school leaders on the west steps of the State Capitol lawn.

In addition to advocating for charter friendly policy, Advocacy Day is an opportunity to create a memorable impression that is more meaningful than numbers on spreadsheets. In the late hours of a legislative session, our hope is that legislators recall the stories shared by charter leaders and parents about schools making a real difference - uplifting struggling students and helping each student to be their best.

To this end, it is vital that charter leaders, board members, teachers and parents tell their story. Messages from Granada Hills' Brian Bauer and Summit Public Schools' Diane Tavenner explain why your help is so important to the future of charter schools.

To make it easier to take part, CCSA staff will schedule appointments for your school delegation. In addition to charter leaders, board members and parents are also welcome. No matter who participates, CCSA is offering training on-site and before the event via optional webinars to help your team be prepared and confident advocates.

The meetings provide a chance to share how legislation would impact both your school and the students you serve. Not only will your visit with your legislator occur during National Charter Schools Week, it is just days before the budget debate heats up. This event is FREE for participants. Register today! The deadline to register is Friday, April 19.

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