EARN the People's Vote

Where’s The REAP?

A “live REAP” is one of the reasonable demands that is evolving as part of the Coalition for the People’s Agenda. Therefore, it is imperative that the public not be misled about the existence of this document ahead of the anticipated Board vote on the Student Assignment Plan changes on Sept. 29th. Please contact your board member and remind them that when it comes to the proposed tax increase, they need to #EARNthePeoplesVote.

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Accountability, EARN the People's Vote, Student Assignment, Teachable Moment

Dear JCPS Severs Ties with AROS

When efforts to reconcile differences over support of West End and Black families continued to break down, Dear JCPS was left with no other option than to withdraw from the Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools, Louisville.

Full story.

“Instead, Dear JCPS is honored to be working with the Kentucky Alliance Education Committee on their revival of the People’s Agenda, to include a list of demands for JCPS. Their organization meets Monday’s at 4:30 PM via Zoom,” Adelmann said. “When the dust settles, we want to be standing on the right side of history. AROS Louisville, under its current leadership, is on the wrong side of history. And we wanted to distance ourselves as quickly and vocally as possible.” 

#StandWithBlackJCPSStudents #BlackJCPSStudentsMatter

EARN the People's Vote

We, The People, Object!

Dear JCPS Superintendent Pollio, Board Chair Porter and Board of Education Members:

During this critical moment in the movement for Black lives, not only across our nation but right here in JCPS, it is unacceptable that JCPS Board Meetings continue via Zoom, without an adequate forum for stakeholders to express our concerns publicly.

Since March, the only way for the public to participate in these meetings has been to send written remarks to the board secretary, who then forwards them to board members and records them in the minutes. At a time when our district is taking great strides to ensure technology is distributed equitably so that even our community’s most impacted families have access, why not encourage this same technology to be utilized for participation in public discourse, as well?

On August 6, leaders from four of the undersigned Black-allied, anti-racist organizations sent an “urgent” email to Dr. Pollio, reminding him that Black and West Louisville families represent a very powerful and important voting bloc in Jefferson County. We warned of grave concerns we were hearing from the community about moving forward with the student assignment plan as proposed, without obtaining buy-in from the impacted community for the tax increase necessary to fund these changes. Instead, grassroots organizations and community members continue to be ignored, shut out, manipulated and misled. Efforts to elevate solutions to these concerns have been met with resistance, barriers or flat out ignored.

On August 11, ahead of the August 18 board meeting, all three co-chairs of the Kentucky Alliance emailed a plea to the Board, noting that stakeholders “can only submit written statements” which “are not read out loud at the meeting.” They further requested the public “be allowed to participate by zoom, phone, or by submitting video or audio statements that will be presented during the meeting.”

For nearly six months, Coalition leaders have been trying to warn JCPS decision-makers of the increasing number of grassroots organizations that feel Louisville’s Black and West End voters have zero appetite for a tax increase at this time. We fear district efforts to further advance this agenda without demonstrating a good-faith effort to earn the vote of Black voters and their allies, is likely to backfire, resulting in a failure of this ballot measure.

If you could hear us, we would want you to know that the People’s Agenda is a living document that focuses on nine important social-justice issues, including Education and Youth Empowerment. If we could speak, we would let you know about the Coalition’s reasonable demands around student assignment and other structural and systemic inequities, so the Board could address them by the next board meeting on September 29, ahead of the November 3 vote.

We, the undersigned, object to yet another board meeting taking place with lack of access, especially at a time when the district must  make EVERY EFFORT to ensure impacted stakeholders are part of the decision-making process and their representatives have an ONGOING seat at the table!

On behalf of the Coalition for the People’s Agenda,

Tyra Walker, Shameka Parrish-Wright, Dre Dawson, Co-chairs, The Kentucky Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression
Latasha Harrison, Founder, Louisville PTO
De’Nita Wright, Coalition of West Louisville Neighborhood Associations
Michelle Pennix, Retired JCPS Principal, PrincipledPennix
Dennisha Rivers, Founder of Vision of Life Outreach Ministries
Gay Adelmann, Co-founder, Dear JCPS, Co-founder Save Our Schools Kentucky
Leigh Ann Yost, Leigh Ann The Advocate
Gin Spaulding, JCPS parent, retired JCPS teacher
Ivonne Rovira, JCPS teacher, co-founder JCPS Leads, co-founder Kentucky Educators United
Greg Tichenor, JCPS teacher
and countless other marginalized voices yet to be heard

EARN the People's Vote

JCPS Education Advocates Hold Virtual Teacher Forums

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Education advocacy groups in Jefferson County are meeting behind the scenes with teachers to gather input while crafting a growing list of safety demands for Jefferson County Schools. 

On Monday, Dear JCPS, Save Our Schools, and other advocates participated in a virtual meeting of the KY Alliance Education Committee. The goal is to present a list of demands against racism while also promoting safe COVID-19 measures to the Board of Education in an upcoming meeting. 

Gay Adelmann of Dear JCPS, helped lead the latest meeting Monday. She presented some broad demands featured in the People’s Agenda. Adelmann says this is simply a starting point, and the grassroots Committee will build on these to further localize what they mean for JCPS. These demands include: 

  • No reopening of schools until scientific data supports it; 
  • Police-free schools;
  • An adequate number of counselors, nurses, and community/parent outreach staff in schools; 
  • “Safe conditions” like smaller class sizes, ample PPE, testing, cleaning, and equitable access to online learning; 
  • A moratorium on charter/voucher programs; and
  • Infusion of federal money in public school programs.

Teachers have recently returned to work on planning for the new school year. Some expressed support for these demands, while adding more measures such as anti-racism training. Adelmann expressed concern for ongoing proposals within JCPS, like student assignment changes and the plan for a tax hike. She wants to ensure the student assignment changes planned are equitable for students. 

“Back to school when it’s safe to me means not just safe from COVID, but safe from anything and everything that puts our students at risk, including racist educators, and racist curriculum, and racist and abusive test practices, for example,” said Adelmann. “We have to dismantle and abolish systemic racist policies that have been allowed to persist. This is our moment. This is our chance to do it,” she added.

Original story here: https://spectrumnews1.com/ky/louisville/news/2020/08/12/virtual-teacher-forum

EARN the People's Vote, Teachable Moment

Teachable Moments

Dear JCPS is proud to launch a new private Facebook group called Dear JCPS Teachable Moments. A lengthier explanation of this new program can be found at the end of this week’s episode of Save Our Schools with Dear JCPS.

If you suspect a JCPS employee is exhibiting reckless or culturally biased behaviors that could put students at risk, you can anonymously email screenshots to teachablemoments@dearjcps.com