PI General Meeting, Thursday, June 4 from 6:00 to 7:30
Our PI General Meeting (GM) was last Thursday and it was a full agenda with about 60 people attending. We started with a memorial to George Floyd and the death of other unarmed black American men who have been murdered by police officers. Each steering committee member was given the opportunity to read something they had written and 8 of us accepted. Afterwards we had 2 minutes of silence and then went into smaller groups of 6 or 7 so that each attendee could express how the events of the previous 10 days had affected them. Someone from each group was selected as a representative and asked to report back to the larger group. You can see the zoom video of that portion of our meeting on our Facebook page HERE
The second part of our GM was focused on education issues in Arizona. Our speaker was Rosemary Agneessens who is the Community Organizer with the Yavapai County Education Service Agency. She connects district staffs and families to teach about the education issues facing our schools, provide training in advocacy and developing a voice, and to empower others to take on the powerbrokers. Rosemary has been in education for over 50 years and provided us with a wealth of information about the history of funding for our public schools in Arizona and what legislation and other influences have plummeted our state’s school funding into the lowest 10% compared to other states. She concluded with an update on Invest for Ed which is an initiative to add almost a billion dollars to the state’s public education budget and what we can do to support that. Rosemary Agneessens’ presentation “What’s Going On With Education Funding in AZ?” is posted on our PI Facebook page (Bill Court is finishing this today and will send the link.). As an ongoing resource of information, Rosemary emails a newsletter every 2 weeks which is a comprehensive summary of the best articles that she culls from from her research. If you would like to receive her newsletter, you can request it at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Needed: Education Team Leader
Prescott Indivisible has an education team of about 30 members. Julia Watson and LaBeth Pondish were co-chairs and they did a wonderful job keeping us informed on education issues, and organizing and training our members to participate in Request to Speak (RTS). For those of you who are not familiar with RTS, it is an online program which allows us as citizens to let our state legislators know how we feel about a certain bill that is in the legislative process. LaBeth and Julia have both had to resign. We are grateful for their service and now it is time to find a new team leader. Fortunately we have lots of help. Julia Watson has offered to continue to do one-on-one RTS trainings. Abby Brill, who transformed her postcard writing Brill Brigade into an RTS group, will start meeting again on Tuesday mornings when the state legislature is in session. Rosemary Agneessens is also an ally and will collaborate with the new team leader.
Does the prospect of being an agent for effective positive change in our public education system appeal to you? Let me know: email@example.com.
Mavis Brauer, Chair
CALL TO ACTION
Invest in Ed is an initiative that would give our public schools almost a billion dollars in the next fiscal year. More signatures are needed!
DRIVE THROUGH PETITION SIGNING
Sunday, June 14, 1-3 pm
Granite Peak Unitarian Universalist Congregation (GPUUC) parking lot.
Bring your own pen. Signature gatherers will have on masks and gloves.
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