Take Action

The following recommendations are the result of input from Senator Lew Frederick, Laurie Wimmer, Betsy Salter, PAA Oregon members, and members of the  Education Caucus of the Democratic Party of Oregon.

Send an E-mail Postcard to the Legislature

It's as easy as 1-2-3-4-5. Send a postcard to state legislators to let them know your thoughts on education bills that will impact Oregon's schools and children. In fact, It only takes a minute or two. With so many decisions being made at the statehouse, it often seems like parents have little to say about important decisions that affect their children. Follow these easy steps to let your legislators know what you think. 

  1. Open your email program.

  2. Copy and paste the postcard image (Pass or Do Not Pass)  into a new message. The image will instantly let officials know where you stand on the issue.

  3. Write a note expressing your concerns. Include the bill number in the subject line and  a "Do Pass" or "Do not Pass" statement. Ex. Pass SB353-1.

  4. Copy and paste email addresses of pertinent  lawmakers listed below. SB bill go to the Senators. HB bills go to House Representatives. (Copy the entire list at once.)

  5. Sign and Send 

Send a postcard or letter to this address:

900 Court Street NE, Salem, OR  97301

House Speaker Representative

Tina Kotek rep.tinakotek@state.or.us or 503-986-1200

 

Senate President Senator

Peter Courtney sen.petercourtney@state.or.us or 503-986-1600

Do Not Pass SB 437  Establishes Education Savings Accounts

This bill will is a cleverly disguised school choice option. It proposes to give parents direct access to funding by setting up Education Savings Accounts to pay for private school tuition or homeschooling. It would weaken public schools. It is modeled on ALEC legislation.

The bill is supported by Cascade Policy Institute, a phony think tank funded by the Koch billionaires. Read more about it and find out how to take action here.

Do Pass SB746 -- State Superintendent of Public Instruction should be an elected position

This bill will return the State Superintendent of Public Instruction to an elected position.

Currently the Governor serves as the State SPI and appoints a Deputy Superintendent of K-12 Public Instruction. This resulted in a parallel state education system with the Chief Education Office in the Governor's Office. We need a State Superintendent of Public Instuction who is accountable to the people they serve. Please write to the Senate Education Committee to urge them to approve SB 746 with a "do pass" recommendation.

Do Not Pass SB182  Establishes Educator Advancement Council

Prescribes duties of council, including duties related to regional educator networks and professional development of early childhood educators. Changes name of Network of Quality Teaching and Learning Fund to Educator Advancement Fund. Appropriates moneys in fund to council instead of Department of Education. Authorizes Higher Education Coordinating Commission to award moneys to culturally and linguistically diverse teacher candidates to use at approved educator preparation providers. The Governor's budget proposes to fund the Council at $37.5M. Chalkboard Project is championing SB182.  

 

Tell legislators let's stick with the system we have and put the $37.5M towards reducing the number of teachers who are going to lose their jobs because the Legislature failed to raise revenue to maintain current service levels. Please write to the Ways & Means Committee to encourage them to disapprove HB 3015 with a "do not pass" recommendation.

Do Not Pass HB2246 Establishes Task Force on the High School Graduation and College and Career Readiness Act.

 It is intended to implement M 98 as written. It does not provide any flexibility for most districts on how they can spend M 98 funds. It requires funds be spent on audits and ODE interventions based on school and district failure to achieve "outcomes."

Tell legislators that Oregon has  a substantial budget shortfall this biennium. I am astounded that supporters of M 98 continue to say with a straight face that their specific high school graduation, CTE and college prep programs must be funded despite the cuts our K-12 public schools are being forced to absorb due to the budget shortfall. This bill transfers funding from K-12 to higher ed. HB 2246 does not provide school district and high school administrators the flexibility they need to spend M 98 funds to best serve their respective students and families. HB 2246 also wastes precious school funding on creating a new state bureaucracy to oversee, monitor, and audit M 98 funding.  HB 2246 is currently in Ways & Means. Please tell them do not pass HB 2246.

Do Pass HB3015 -- Replace SBAC with an alternative nationally recognized standardized test

This bill would authorize schools to replace SBAC with an alternative nationally recognized standardized test. The example used is ACT or SAT in High School, but in verbal testimony Rep. Doherty says that the intent is to allow similar authority for grades 3 - 8 as well. I would encourage anyone interested to listen/watch the testimony by Rep. Doherty and Rep. Buehler which starts at about 1 hour 18 minutes. Please write to the House Education Committee to encourage them to approve HB 3015 with a "do pass" recommendation.

BUT . . . Continue to contact your legislators.

From: Lew Frederick <lew@lewfrederick.org>

Date: April 20, 2017 2:28:30 PM PDT

To: "betsysalter@comcast.net" <betsysalter@comcast.net>

Subject: Re: Mult Dem Education Study Group Resolution

 

The resolution is okay, as far as I am concerned, and it gives a direct connection to a means of looking at the issue using the bill number. 

Though I must say that it is technically “dead” as far as it becoming legislation. I am hearing that the Secretary of State’s office still has some interest in determining the effectiveness and the costs of the tests. So there may be another path outside of the Chambers. 

 

Thank you.

Do Pass SB353-1 -- Let schools decide how to spend funds, not corporations

This bill amends M 98 to allow school districts and schools to have the flexibility for how they use M 98 funds. M 98 (sponsored by Stand for Children) is very prescriptive in how its funds can be used. Given anticipated staffing cuts due to the $1.6 B budget shortfall it is imperative that if there are any M 98 funds allocated, that school districts and schools have the flexibility to apply those funds to start, maintain, or expand the graduation support, CTE and/or college prep programs and services that will best serve their students and families. Hopefully, SB 353-1 will also avoid the need to create and staff a new ODE program in order to distribute, monitor and report on how M 98 funds are being spent. Please write to the Senate Education Committee to urge them to approve SB 353-1 with a "do pass" recommendation.

The Senate Education Committee failed to move SB 353-1 forward yesterday so it is "dead" for this legislative session.
 

BUT . . . Continue to contact your legislators. Tell them Oregon cannot afford M 98.
 
"Since SB 353-1 failed to move forward, and in light of the severe budget cuts our school districts are facing, funding for M 98 should be eliminated."
 
Personalize to reflect that you are an Oregon parent, student, teacher, grandparent, concerned citizen...
 
Provide name and address so they can confirm we are who we say we are. Apparently the realtors who opposed HB 2006 (reduced Mortgage Interest Deduction for high income earners) used addresses of houses for sale to claim to be constituents when they sent in testimony.

Do Pass SB649 -- State Board of Education should be composed of educators

This bill will reconstitute the State Board of Education to be composed primarily of educators. The current board is appointed by the Governor to represent Congressional Districts and they don't have to have any experience or knowledge in Oregon's public education system. Please write to the Senate Education Committee to urge them to approve SB 649 with a "do pass" recommendation.

Do Not Pass SB915-- Increases funding school districts must pay charter schools

This bill modifies the percentage of amounts school districts must pay from State School Fund to charter schools that are not virtual charter schools. Increases the percentage of the school district’s General Purpose Grant that must be paid to charter schools. Please write to the House Education Committee to encourage them to disapprove HB 3015 with a "do not pass" recommendation.

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