Public Schools Week Shows the Promise and Potential of Public Schools

New videos from the Learning First Alliance show six exemplary public schools across the country that are making a difference for students and their communities

Alexandria, VA (March 25, 2019) -- The Learning First Alliance (LFA) and thousands of partner groups and educators across the country are hosting Public Schools Week 2019, with events planned from March 25-29 to highlight the successes public schools have achieved and the hope for continued progress.

Across the country, public school leaders are engaging their communities, sponsoring contests with teachers and writing letters to lawmakers to show the great things that are happening in their schools as well as the need for more resources to fully meet their students’ potential. And leaders of the 12 LFA member organizations are speaking out on the importance of public education through a series of vlogs available on LFA’s YouTube channel.

A new series of videos by the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) and LFA chronicles six remarkably different public schools across the country that are serving their diverse populations of students. All these schools prepare students for college, careers and life while serving as the centerpiece of their communities.

Viewers get a glimpse into Durkee Elementary in Houston Independent School District, which has worked with a wide array of community partners to transform its leadership under the community schools model. Durkee Elementary supports its students and staff as well as the impoverished neighborhood it serves.

Another video chronicles the Ekalaka, Mont. school district, which educates 112 students to their fullest potential while serving as the heart of its rural community.

And in South Florida, Parkway Middle School offers a wide array of curricular opportunities for public school students in South Florida, including music composition classes, EMT training, and pre-law courses.

“This week we will celebrate thousands of exemplary public schools across the country that are the foundation of their students’ success, the communities they serve and our nation’s future,” said Nathan R. Monell, CAE, executive director of the National PTA and 2018-19 chair of the Learning First Alliance, a coalition of 12 national education organizations representing more than 10 million parents, teachers, administrators, specialists, school board members and teacher educators. “Public schools educate 90 percent of our nation’s students and are providing talented professionals for jobs in the corporate and public sectors as well as the military. It’s vitally important that we have a strong system of public schools across the United States.”

The events are designed in part to dispel myths and assumptions about public schools.

“We firmly believe that public education in America today is the best that it has ever been,” said Dan Domenech, executive director of AASA, the School Superintendents Association. “That’s not to say we don’t want to be better, equity is a major issue that we are confronting today.”

Public Schools Week also celebrates the wide range of educators and school professionals who help every student meet their highest potential, both directly and indirectly, including teachers, principals, school counselors, school nurses, school board members, coaches, bus drivers, administrators and other workers.

For more information, go to #PublicSchoolProud will be a national campaign that continues to showcase great things happening within public schools throughout the year.

Read the full release.

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