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California’s charter schools fight back at 26th Annual Conference

March 15, 2019

Chants and cheers stating “When charter schools are under attack, what do we do? Stand up, fight back!” and “Hey, hey, CTA! You can’t take my school away!” echoed throughout the city of Sacramento this week as close to 8,000 charter school students, families, advocates and supporters marched to the Stand for All Students Rally at the State Capitol Building on Wednesday, March 13, 2019 as part of the 26th Annual California Charter Schools Conference from March 11-14, 2019.  

The Rally and Conference coincided with a complete rebranding of the California Charter Schools Association (CCSA) and the welcoming of historic changes in CCSA’s leadership during a pivotal point in California education landscape. As Diana Lambert of EdSource stated in a story from Thursday, March 14, “the rebranding and motto — Stand For All Students — is meant to help the association get the message out that they stand for the success of all students, in charter and regular public schools, along with more funding for all schools.”

A hallmark of the Conference was the Stand for All Students Rally, where over 6,000 charter school students, families and advocates convened to fight for their future and their right to a quality education. The event was dubbed by Dr. Steve Perry, Founder & Head of Capital Preparatory Schools, who attended the event and delivered a speech kicking off the march to the Rally, as the largest rally on the State Capitol’s lawn. CCSA also unveiled their legislative priorities and policy agenda during the event, which calls on legislators to fully fund and defend great schools and deliver for all students throughout the state.  Learn more about CCSA’s legislative priorities here.

Throughout the Conference, attendees witnessed visionary keynote speeches from new CCSA President and CEO, Myrna Castrejón, and new CCSA Board President, Margaret Fortune, as well as uplifting and motivating speeches from Arne Duncan, U.S. Secretary of Education Secretary during the Obama administration; Dr. Steve Perry, Founder & Head of Capital Preparatory Schools; and Doug Lemov, Managing Director of Teach Like a Champion.

California’s charter schools showed the strength and unifying power behind the movement this week. As education continues to be a central focus in Sacramento, CCSA and hundreds of thousands of charter school supporters in the state’s 1,323 charter schools are just getting started in telling their story.

To learn more about the 26th Annual Conference, visit: