Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Washington DC School Choice comes to Louisville

The BIPPS press release...

As a single mother of three children, nationally known activist Virginia Walden Ford led an overwhelmingly successful grassroots movement to bring school choice to Washington, D.C.

Ford brings her message that “parents deserve a choice so kids can have a chance” to Louisville this Friday. She will speak at a rally on Friday at 7 p.m. in the multipurpose facility at Midwest Church of Christ, 2115 Garland Ave., between S 22nd St. and Dr. W.J. Hodge St. – just off Dixie Highway on Garland Ave.

“One parent can make a difference – I’m living proof of this,” Ford said. “Sometimes parents don’t feel like they have a right to speak out on behalf of their children. But we’re Americans; we have a right to stand up and speak out on behalf of the issues that affect our families.”

Along with sharing her personal story about how being able to remove her son, William, from a violent inner-city school in the nation’s capital and enroll him in a better school “saved and changed his life,” Ford will challenge parents, legislators and activists to give a voice to poor children trapped in failing schools by allowing charter schools.

Rep. Brad Montell, R-Shelbyville, who recently pre-filed BR 79 for the 2010 session, will be on hand to discuss his proposal. Montell’s bill would allow a variety of entities, including universities and local governments, to sponsor “public school academies.”

These public schools would be free of many of the stifling bureaucratic regulations imposed on the current system, including restrictions by the teachers unions that prevent students from receiving the education they need.

A recent study by Stanford economist Caroline Hoxby found that charter school students in New York City outperformed their peers in traditional public schools.

Ford is executive director of D.C. Parents for School Choice, founding member and national board member of the Black Alliance for Educational Options and was among 130 black students who followed the famed “Little Rock Nine” to desegregate the Little Rock High School in the 1960s.


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