Three women in a small town in northeast Mississippi are using Parents for Public Schools to push their local schools to improve. Their own children - the motivation for their involvement - will benefit, of course. But many others reap the benefits.
Schoolhouse to Statehouse
For too long, Mississippians have not demanded the type of public education that serves all students. In response, PPS introduced Schoolhouse to Statehouse, an initiative that strengthens public education throughout the state by creating a powerful group of parents who can recognize and support quality leadership both at the school, district and statehouse.
Schoolhouse to Statehouse is a comprehensive program designed to strengthen public education through a three-pronged strategy:
- Organizes parents to partner with public school leaders to make public education stronger. Many parents are are often intimidated or discouraged from being vocal proponents of their children’s education because of their own negative school experiences. When parents graduate from our leadership programs, they are prepared to be educational partners with local school leaders. They understand the terminology of education, the importance of advocating for stronger schools and the best ways to work with administrators and teachers to achieve the shared goal of higher student performance.
- Informs and empowers parents to clamor for responsible educational funding by state legislators. Assisted by the Parents Campaign, PPS provides regular education updates to parents. Parents across the state are informed of their local legislators’ stands on education spending and education reform. Parents also receive a county-by-county breakdown of how potential educational budget cuts will affect their schools. Empowered with up-to-date, accurate knowledge of pressing issues, parents are encouraged to let their individual voices be heard from Schoolhouse to Statehouse.
- Brings parents together to work on common goals. Parents across the state, recruited and trained by full-time coaches, determine the needs of their particular area and – once trained – go to work to reduce barriers to learning at home, at school and in the community. Parents in our network have been elected to school boards, created afterhours reading space, developed peer-to-peer tutoring programs, and raised the funding for science labs that otherwise would not have been built.