The current state of the budget crisis in education is many things: frightening, discouraging, anger inducing, sad. But we must communicate the accurate and most recent facts we know about the situation to our concerned parents and communities on a regular basis. I have seen a large number of districts already doing this across the state, and I'm happy to see it for several reasons:
- Misinformation and misunderstandings exist and can run rampant if you don't take the opportunity to address and clarify them.
- Parents need to understand just how dire a situation it is and how it will affect their individual children. This is an opportunity to talk to parents and engaged citizens about how they can advocate for your district (and public schools as a whole) with the legislature.
- An informed community is an engaged one. By clearly telling them what's going on with your finances and what your schools need and are currently lacking, individuals or local businesses may be able to step in and provide services, products, or volunteer in areas of need.
It is going to take all of us pulling together to find innovative solutions, so if you haven't already shared (not just once but on a regular basis) updates on where your district stands, please think about having a regular blog post, Facebook post, community meeting, early-morning coffee talks, or any other ideas you can think of to keep your community informed.
And don't forget: if you have exciting events going on in your district, let us help you get the word out! Just email me the details, and we'll share the great things you are doing.