See letter below from ConnCAN on their efforts with the State.
I’ve been asking a lot of you these past weeks. Since launching our ‘Mind the Gaps’ campaign almost two months ago, I’ve been asking you to write your legislators, attend legislative hearings, visit our campaign website and spread the word among friends and family.
You responded – and because of that, we’ve made real progress. As we head into the latter part of the legislative session, I wanted to take a moment to update you on the state of our campaign and thank you for your work.
Over 1,000 Connecticut citizens have written their elected officials to ask them to ‘Mind the Gaps’ in student achievement by enacting three fiscally responsible, commonsense, results-oriented education reforms in the 2009 legislative session.
In late February, over 400 advocates attended the appropriations hearing in Hartford, wearing bright blue Mind the Gaps t-shirts and asking our legislators to avoid the tragedy of half-completed, high-performing public charter schools.
In March, advocates from across the state testified at two hearings on three important bills that were raised by the General Assembly’s Education Committee for data transparency in schools and teacher quality.
1) An Act Concerning Longitudinal Studies Of Student Achievement (H.B. 6491) would require that the Connecticut State Department of Education allow nonprofits and universities to use education data the state collects to improve instruction and help parents make smart choices.
2) An Act Concerning Teacher Certification (H.B. 6666) would remove the roadblocks keeping excellent teachers out of Connecticut classrooms by changing the law that prevents great candidates from teaching without a specific college major. Instead, this bill would give them the option to prove their subject knowledge by passing a rigorous exam.
3) An Act Establishing A Resident Teacher Certificate (H.B. 6654) would establish a one-year resident teacher certificate so that Teach for America can continue to provide its teachers the long-term professional development and support that has proven so effective in helping raise student achievement.
Next week, on April 2, charter school advocates will converge on the steps of the State Capitol for one last push to ensure our voices are heard as legislators make their final funding choices. And on April 6th, the Education Committee will reach its final deadline to pass these three bills on to the General Assembly as a whole.
If you haven’t done so yet, please take two minutes right now to send a letter to your legislator about these critical issues so that we can ensure that every child in Connecticut has access to a great public school.
Thank you for being an advocate for Connecticut kids.
Chief Executive Officer
P.S. Don’t forget to visit our campaign website – www.pleasemindthegaps.org – for more information, videos, and to keep track of our progress.
About ConnCAN — The Connecticut Coalition for Achievement Now (ConnCAN) is an advocacy organization building a new movement of concerned Connecticut citizens working to create fundamental change in our education system. To learn more visit: www.conncan.org.