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Oregon Charter School News Weekly

A weekly newsletter of Charter School happenings around Oregon and the Nation.

Legislators Still Need to Hear From You

The JCSS is expected to release a new draft of legislative language for the Student Success Act today! Legislators have heard from you, and they're listening. Legislators who are champions of charter schools and champions of equitable access for students are urging the JCSS to protect the inclusion of charter schools in this funding. 

We expect to see charter schools included in today's draft -- but threats to this inclusion remain. There are some who want to exclude some brick & mortar charter schools from the Student Success Act. To include some, but not others, is unfair to the thousands of students who choose a public charter school that meets their education needs. If you haven't yet, make a call to your legislator and remind them: 

  • Charter schools are public schools
  • Students in our state's public charter schools deserve access to new taxpayer revenue for schools

Last Thursday, the Joint Student Success committee rolled out the MCAT as the chosen tax structure to raise $2 billion over the next biennium for early education and k-12 schools. Thursday night's public hearing on the revenue proposal drew a modest crowd to the Capitol as stakeholders across the education system and business community showed up to testify on the proposal. There was broad support for the MCAT proposal mixed with some expected resistance from the business community. Small businesses are supportive of raising revenue to invest in the public school system; however, they are pushing for an increase in the exemption threshold which is currently set at $1 million. Even if the legislature is able to secure funding for the K-12 system, the fate of other budget areas, especially health and human services, are still unknown as we (impatiently) await the May 15th revenue forecast.

ORC3S will continue to work with legislative leadership on the inclusion of charter schools in the Student Success Act, we will be working with the them to develop the details of that inclusion. 

Stay tuned for developments as this bill continues its journey through the legislature. 

 
Educator Resources

Programs, Policy, and Research
 
Events and Workshops
School Opportunities
  • 2019 Social Justice Activist of the Year Awards
    Do you know an outstanding educator whose racial and/or social justice activism has had a positive impact on the lives of their students, school community or fellow educators? Click here to nominate them for NEA’s 2019 Social Justice Activist Award!
     
  • Nike Community Impact Fund 
    Applications are open until June 1 for the Nike Community Impact Fund (NCIF). The NCIF aims to get kids moving, experience and enjoy sports and physical activity, and create stronger communities by awarding funds to nonprofits, community centers, and local schools. Click here to learn more and apply.
     
  • National Teacher Day and Teacher Appreciation Week 
    National Teacher Day and Appreciation Week is just around the corner - May 7 to 12. Show your support and demonstrate your value and admiration for their hard work. For ideas, toolkits, and campaigns, visit National Education Association (NEA)'s Teacher Appreciation Week webpage here.  
Student Resources and Opportunities
  • Calling All Revolutionary Poets
    826 National is accepting student submissions for a Poets in Revolt! poetry anthology, scheduled for publication in fall 2019. To be eligible, students in grade levels 6 through 10 must participate in the Poets in Revolt lesson (click here to view the lesson plan). The deadline is April 26. Click here for more info. 
     
  • Capitol Shadow Day
    The student Capitol shadow opportunity provides students with the unique opportunity to “shadow” the Oregon Coalition of Community Charter Schools (ORC3S) lobbyist, gaining insight into the legislative process and experiencing a day in the life of education advocacy organizations while in session at the Capitol. Selected students will travel to Salem, have the opportunity to meet with their elected representatives, other lobbyists/advocates, and watch Oregon Senate and House floor sessions.Visit this page for more details. 
 
Oregon Schools in the News

Students from Girls Engage Technology (GET) Master Coding
Saturday Academy's Girls Engage Technology (GET) program provides young girls an opportunity to experience programming and engineering and gain confidence in technology. News Channel KGW8 recently featured 10-year-old GET student Diana Jeszensky. In this segment, Diana shares some of what she learned in the program with a platformer demo.  

"With Saturday Academy and coding, I learned a bunch about XY coordinates and basically it just introduced me to programming. I didn't even know how to program before, but now I know a bunch about it," Diana explains. Diana also volunteers at Saturday Academy. "I get to assist other girls who are also learning to program," Diana shares. "I assist them and they help teach me even more."

Watch the segment here and learn more about Saturday Academy and GET here

Central Oregon Schools Look To Grow Emotional Learners
A recent OPB article recognized efforts to foster the social-emotional skills of students at Lava Ridge Elementary. Lava Ridge Elementary is a Bend-La Pine School in Bend, Oregon.

The efforts are spearheaded by Dr. Kendra Coates, director of early education up to third grade at Oregon's High Desert Education Service District. This is part of a region-wide initiative to support teachers and help them better teach SE skills such as self-awareness and relationship-building.

“Part of understanding social-emotional development and behaviors is to understand how we can better design learning environments,” said Coates. Click here to learn about her growth mindset approach, her journey and role as a leader, and more. 
Is your school a member of ORC3S yet? 
We are a coalition of community-based, public charter schools representing all corners of our state. Although, we are all unique in our pedagogy and practice, what unites us is our commitment to educational innovation and to high-quality schools for all students. Our mission is to provide a voice and sustainable support and guidance for the members of our coalition.
Join us now!
Oregon Coalition of Community Charter Schools
www.orc3s.org
13809 SE Division St Ste A
Portland, OR 97236


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