POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. -- Daily Voice accepts signed letters to the editor. Send letters to firstname.lastname@example.org.
To the editor:
I recently attended an advocacy day in Albany sponsored by the Alliance for Quality Education. As a teacher in the Poughkeepsie City School District for 11 years, along with being active in local and state politics, it was important for me to urge our elected officials to stand up for kids.
I was able to meet with state Sen. Sue Serino, her chief of staff and the Senate Education Committee Council while in Albany. During this meeting, I shared my beliefs about the problems plaguing public schools and a call to civic engagement.
It is my belief that there is a campaign to defund and privatize our schools. The narrative that has been created by wealthy hedge fund managers and billionaires is that public schools, teachers and administrators are failing. Therefore, they need to be punished and the schools privatized.
However, this is a distraction from the real issues that are plaguing too many of our state’s children. The root causes of the problems confronting public education are a shameful child poverty rate, a broken criminal justice system that sends an alarming rate of our children to jail instead of college and a system of de facto segregation.
State legislators who support punishing schools, especially, our state senator, Sue Serino, do not reflect the interests, concerns or desires of the people they represent. Your voting record does not include all families. It does not include adequate, equitable and sustainable funding for schools. It does not include the support and reforms educators need to do their jobs. It does not consider the legacy of race and class inequality that afflict our students every day.
Our students cannot afford for these issues to be ignored. As our state enters another election cycle it’s imperative that we elect legislators who support public education. We need adequate funding and real solutions to help all students succeed, not laws that punish teachers and administrators and leave students without the proper resources to fulfill their potential.
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