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‘All in’- Equitable funding for all Connecticut schools

Posted on a wall in my second-grade classroom is a motivational poster that states, “We’re all in this together!” These five powerful words remind my second-grade students the importance of unity, perseverance, and teamwork. This simple catch phrase empowers them to tackle any challenges that they face. It reinforces that they are supported by the adults in their lives and their peers in the classroom. As my students tackle the challenges of the current school year, this mindset affords them the opportunity to be “all in” and invested in their own learning.

Consolidating Connecticut’s colleges is a desperate move — and insane

While neighboring New York has declared free two-year and four-public education, and Massachusetts/Rhode Island maintain their high standards for accessible public education, Connecticut seems to have lost its collective mind this week with the passing of BOR President Mark Ojakian’s plan to consolidate and possibly eliminate the Connecticut Community College system in our state.

Neediest students first to be sacrificed in CSCU consolidation ‘plan’

In recommending a plan to consolidate the state’s 12 community colleges in order to sustain the larger CSCU system, President Mark Ojakian maintains that this latest disruption in Connecticut higher education was never the goal of the consolidation that created CSCU in 2011. However, since it was Ojakian who crafted that original reorganization plan for the Malloy administration, his denial seems somewhat disingenuous and promises to result in similarly disappointing outcomes.

Lawmakers forcing Waterbury charter school’s future into ‘limbo’

As the leaders of Brass City Charter School, the only public charter school in Waterbury, we know firsthand how special our school is to our community. But despite our successes, and even in light of recently being named a School of Distinction by the state, the future of our school and our students is in limbo, and it’s our lawmakers who are the ones keeping us there.

Save Quinebaug Valley Community’s Willimantic location!

Quinebaug Valley Community College has been on Main Street in Willimantic since 1999. While Quinebaug Valley Community College may not be centerfold on Main Street; it is the heart that keeps Main Street thriving. That’s why Quinebaug Valley Community College is an excellent start for someone to begin their college career. Unfortunately, though; there are plans to shut down the Willimantic center after the spring 2017 semester. That should not be allowed to happen.

State’s cities must be at the heart of an economic rebound

Our state’s challenges are real but surmountable. As we confront them, we, as a state, need to consider putting “we before me.” The collective mentality among towns and cities cannot be that spending cuts are necessary as long as they affect only other towns. To truly harbor a desire to see the state experience economic growth and success, everyone must be willing to invest in creating the dynamic cities our 21st-century economy demands, even if those investments come at a near-term cost.

New school funding essential to giving some students a voice

Our state’s funding formula, which was intended to equalize education funding in each district, is irrational and disservices students in our neediest communities. We’ve used an arbitrary baseline for funding and have employed insufficient calculations for poverty and special education. A true school funding fix must include measures that hold all districts accountable so that educators can purposefully and efficiently use state money to advance student achievement and growth.

Lawmakers must correct irrational school funding system

Gov. Dannel Malloy has proposed massive changes in education funding and the legislature is beginning to work on his proposals. While it is extremely unlikely that the governor’s radical proposals will be adopted, the legislature needs to correct the irrational funding system that now exists. Sixty witnesses testified at the Education Committee’s recent hearing on the subject.