Petition to Wisconsin State Senate, Wisconsin State House, Scott Walker
Stand with Undocumented Students: Allow In-State Tuition for Dreamers in Wisconsin
My name is Selina Armenta and I am a fall class of 2017 UW-Madison graduate. At UW-Madison I majored in Legal Studies and minored in both Criminal Justice and Chican@ Latin@ Studies. I have been passionate about the law and helping my community for a long time and that is why I aspire to eventually go to law school and become an attorney. I immigrated to the United States from Mexico at the age three. Since then, I have been raised in Madison, Wisconsin, so naturally, attending UW-Madison was always a dream of mine. I was fortunate enough to receive a full-tuition scholarship to UW-Madison and it is for that reason that I was able to obtain a college education at one of the top public universities in the world. You see, I am undocumented and come from a low income background. Without that full-tuition scholarship, a four year university like UW-Madison was not an option. Wisconsin is what some call a “locked out state.” This means that in Wisconsin, undocumented students are forced to pay out-of-state tuition at public colleges and universities, despite the fact that many of us have been Wisconsin residents for most of our lives. From 2009 to 2011, under Governor Doyle, qualified undocumented students were eligible for in-state tuition, Governor Walker revoked that eligibility in 2011. Since then, multiple bills have been introduced by Wisconsin legislature, that would extend in-state tuition to qualifying undocumented students, but have failed to pass. Due to the high cost of out-of-state tuition and the current anti-immigrant climate, my goal of attending law school has been put on hold. Thousands of undocumented students are losing hope of being able to obtain a college education. Like myself, these students only want the opportunity to obtain a college degree in order to give back to this state that we know as home. Currently, there are 7,600 undocumented young people registered under DACA who are denied in-state tuition in Wisconsin. 18 other states already allow undocumented students the chance at an affordable college education and it’s time Wisconsin joins them. Add your name to call on Wisconsin legislators to pass tuition equity legislation introduced by Representative JoCasta Zamarripa, in support of young undocumented Wisconsinites who want the opportunity to pursue a college degree.
Petition to Don Beyer, Arlington School Board Members, APS Staff, Superintendent Murphy, Arlington County Board Members
Nottingham Elementary School Should Continue to be a Neighborhood School!
Nottingham Elementary School should continue to be a neighborhood school and be removed as a potential site for an option school. Nottingham should continue to be a neighborhood school for the following reasons: It has the second highest percentages of walkers at 82%. Why would a school that has a very large number of walkers be considered as an option site? It has two general education buses and one special education bus serving the school. How would the influx of 8-12 additional buses, which are typically associated with an option school, impact the infrastructure surrounding the school? The NW quadrant of the county historically, currently and projected to continue growing with all elementary schools either approaching or over 100% of capacity. Why would you consider removing needed neighborhood seats? Nottingham is tucked away in an upper corner of the county and inside a neighborhood making traveling to and from other parts of the county cumbersome with potentially very long bus rides. Option schools should be centrally located to allow equal access from all parts of the county. During the work session, APS staff reiterated that Nottingham is very close to other schools and would make it “challenging to draw boundaries in the fall.” This appears to be the sole reason for listing Nottingham as a potential option school site. This reason is NOT acceptable. We are asking APS to remove Nottingham Elementary School as a potential candidate for an option site. Nottingham Elementary School is, and will continue to be, a highly walkable and needed neighborhood elementary school.
Petition to Adam Schwab
Cibolo Green Elementary: 15 Minute Recess is Insufficient
We the parents, guardians, and caregivers of past, present, and future students at Cibolo Green Elementary implore the school's administration to increase the amount of recess allotted to students on a daily basis to at least 30 cumulative minutes per day. Currently, our Champions only receive 15 minutes of recess per day. This is woefully insufficient time for some of the youngest members of our community. Next year the district is increasing the length of the school day by 15 minutes. We must do better by these children and provide them more recess than 15 minutes in what is to become a 7 hour and 15 minute school day. We respectfully request that the additional 15 minutes be allocated to an increase in the length of recess for every student. Already, several elementary schools within our district exceed our children's 15 minutes for recess. Two 15-minute recesses: Hidden Forest, Colonial Hills, Vineyard Ranch (with the second of their recesses being 20 minutes) One 27-minute recess: Clear Spring One 30-minute recess: Bulverde Creek, Tuscany Heights One 15-minute and one 30-minute recess: Las Lomas One 60-minute lunch and recess combination: Wilderness Oak, Regency Place Peer-reviewed academic research as well as recommendations by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) all indicate that an increase in recess has many benefits and does not negatively impact academics. In fact, per the AAP, "ironically, minimizing or eliminating recess may be counterproductive to academic achievement, as a growing body of evidence suggests that recess promotes not only physical health and social development but also cognitive performance. Although recess and physical education both promote activity and a healthy lifestyle, it is only supervised but unstructured recess that offers children the opportunity to actually play creatively. In this sense, then, pediatricians’ support of recess is an extension of the AAP’s policy statement supporting free play as a fundamental component of a child’s normal growth and development. On the basis of an abundance of scientific studies, withholding recess for [...] academic reasons would seem to be counterproductive to the intended outcomes and may have unintended consequences in relation to a child’s acquisition of important life skills." Further reading and evidence supporting our position can be found at the following: The Crucial Role of Recess in School, policy statement by the AAP Recess Makes Kids Smarter, Scholastic, by Caralee Adams Texas Christian University's LIINK Project Want Kids to Listen More, Fidget Less? Try More Recess...This School Did, The Today Show
Petition to Susan Eggman, Jose Medina, Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher, Freddie Rodriguez
Preserve Homeschooling in California
Who are the homeschoolers?We Are You! Just like you we support and participate in our communities, we just choose to educate our children at home. Stand with us and oppose this discriminatory legislation! California Homeschool Network, a statewide homeschooling organization, is submitting this petition because California homeschoolers are facing two serious legislative threats. History of the ProblemAll parents want what’s best for their children. For some California families, what’s best is homeschooling. On February 16, 2018, AB 2756 was introduced by Assembly Members Jose Medina, Susan Eggman, and Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher and co-authored by Assemblymember Freddie Rodriguez. On the same day Assemblymember Susan Eggman introduced AB 2926. These hastily written bills are an overreaction to the recent arrests of a California couple accused of seriously abusing their 13 children. Both bills would change California education code and restrict homeschooling in California. Thousands of good homeschooling families are being lumped with one bad family and presumed guilty, and that is wrong! First Small VictoryWhen AB 2756 was introduced, it required annual Fire Marshal inspections of the private homes of homeschooling families! Thousands of homeschoolers strongly objected, and that part was removed from the bill! AB 2756 – A Privacy InvasionIf passed, the education code would be changed to require the nature of a private school to be listed on the Private School Affidavit. The purpose is to single out homeschoolers for data collection. Additional data collection of only one type of private school is unnecessary and profiles a single group. Profiling leads to discrimination. AB 2926 - Additional Requirements for HomeschoolersAB 2926 would establish an advisory committee to make recommendations on “imposing on a home school additional requirements”! The committee would be tasked to consider the following three items and could include additional homeschool requirements: 1.“Health and safety inspections” Inspections of private individuals, solely due to their educational choice, is discriminatory, an invasion of privacy, and potentially a violation of fourth amendment rights. There is no empirical evidence to show that homeschool students are at any greater risk for abuse than public school students. 2.“Additional, specific curriculum standards”The majority of homeschool families do not use public school curriculum, therefore curriculum standards are not only unnecessary, but unwise, considering the significantly higher academic achievement of homeschooled students.Homeschool students typically score 15 to 30 percentile points above public-school students on standardized academic achievement tests. A 2015 study found African American homeschool students scored 23 to 42 percentile points above African American public school students. And what would happen to those who use a highly successful method known as unschooling? This would seriously impair a parent’s right to decide on the best curriculum for each child. 3.“Certification or credentialing of teachers.”High achievement scores are consistent regardless of the parent’s level of education or whether they possess a teaching credential. One 2010 study found homeschool students of parents without teaching credentials scored higher on achievement tests than homeschool students whose parents possessed teaching credentials. California currently does not require private school teachers to be credentialed. Students from states with the greatest level of regulation do not have higher achievement scores, nor do they have higher college acceptance rates than states with few regulations on homeschooling. Homeschoolers are a diverse group. Homeschoolers represent all political, religious, ethnic and socio-economic groups. A 2013 study found that 32% of homeschool students are Black, Asian, Hispanic, and other ethnicities. In other words, California homeschoolers are as diverse as California itself. Homeschooling in California is not broken. There is no evidence to suggest that any changes or additions to homeschooling laws are necessary. Both AB2756 and AB2926 violate individual liberties, and are a waste of legislators’ time and taxpayer dollars. We respectfully ask that these bills be withdrawn.
Petition to FCC, United States Supreme Court, Federal Trade Commission, Ajit Pai
Protect Net Neutrality from the Trump Administration
The internet has helped to boost the economy, create an amazing tool for educators, and provides an outlet for communication with people all over the world. However, the simple policy that keeps the internet a strangely level-playing field (and the internet itself) is under fire from both the Trump administration and service providers like Comcast, AT&T, and Verizon. Sign this petition to call on the FCC to protect net neutrality under the Trump administration. Net neutrality regulations are set to stop ISPs like the big cable and phone companies from favoring/crippling certain websites and services for their own benefit and monetary gain. These rulings could be reversed as Republicans look to deregulate private industries. As a junior in high school, I can appreciate the need to be able to complete homework, communicate, and access streaming media like Netflix without an ISP slowing down my traffic. In the 21st century, internet is like running water, electricity, or transportation. Those without neutral access to it are at a major disadvantage. If net neutrality goes away, the internet will become distorted, and your access to certain content will be based upon your ISP's financial interests and what you're willing to pay, like cable television, hurting the consumer. Let's stop the telecom lobbyists who buy their influence, and the private companies who already control so much of our media before it is too late.
Petition to Kelli Linville, April Barker, Gene Knutson, Daniel Hammill, Whatcom County Council, Bellingham City Council, Michael Lilliquist, Pinky Vargas, Terry Bornemann, Roxanne Murphy
Bellingham Publicly Owned Fiber Optic Network
Publicly Owned Fiber Optic Internet Bellingham is hurting. Like many other cities nationwide we have high unemployment, low wages, and a host of economic, social and environmental problems. This inexpensive solution would help us address all of them, and maintain net-neutrality by creating a public, net-neutral option. In fact over 450 other cities have already implemented solutions like this, but our leaders are reluctant to even give our citizens access to the resources they've already paid for, much less prepare our city for the future. As other cities embrace high-speed fiber broadband, Bellingham is getting left far behind. Our city has underutilized public fiber resources and several net-neutral local Internet Service Providers eager to deploy high speed broadband, like they have in Mount Vernon, yet this is held back by rules and regulations that have not kept pace with technology. Fiber would: Create an opportunity for a public access component to make ultra high speed internet broadly accessible in public spaces, provide higher quality low-income connections to those in need, and guarantee a level of internet access to all. Give Bellingham a strong standing among Washington cities, and create valuable infrastructure that we could continue to build on in the long-term. Create jobs: Fiber would draw companies to the city, provide jobs for construction and maintenance, create new internet service providers and other innovative businesses that are made possible by ultra-fast broadband. Reduce Our Impact on the Environment: Fiber would reduce the need for travel to take place for meetings. It is also very durable and usually requires less maintenance than old infrastructure wiring, like copper wiring. Increase property values: Wiring for fiber-optics has been shown to increase property value approximately 1% Provide a network our government could leverage to deliver data from current and future ‘smart grid’ sensors including those used for parking management, resource monitoring, air quality, muni and other needs. Over the long term smarter management could save the city money and increase our tax base without increasing taxes by reducing unemployment and creating good jobs. This petition asks for the city to give the public access to the broadband resources we've already paid for, expand our critical publicly owned broadband infrastructure, establish a Dig Once Policy for Bellingham and Whatcom County, allow multiple providers into multi-unit dwellings, and provide high quality internet access to all residents that truly address our Digital Divide issues.
Petition to Earl Campbell, Mary Cordray, Evva Anderson, Joseph Dunkle, Geri Kinton, JoAnn Orischak, Christina Gwozdz, David Striebinger, Bill Payne, Cynthia Gregory
Dr. Jeffrey Moss should resign as the Superintendent of Beaufort County Schools
Dr. Jeffrey Moss needs to resign as the Superintendent of Schools for Beaufort County, South Carolina. Dr. Moss displayed a tremendous lack of judgment in changing the guidelines on nepotism for school district employees. He showed a similar impairment in judgment by hiring his wife as both a contractor and an employee. The people of Beaufort County deserve better than this type of behavior from our public employees. Dr. Moss has created a conflict of interest that places everyone associated with the school district in an uncomfortable position. Everyone involved, including the children, needs to understand that we do not accept nepotism, insider dealing or crony capitalism as an acceptable way to conduct ourselves. Public trust is our most precious commodity. Dr. Moss has lost the trust of the public. If Dr. Moss refuses to resign, he should be terminated by the Board of Education.
Petition to Beaufort County School Superintendent Dr. Jeff Moss
Jeff Moss: Give back your $33,000 bonus to the Beaufort County School District
As a result of his covertly altering the nepotism rule before his wife was hired to a top-level $90,000 a year job, Dr. Jeffrey Moss entered into a plea deal with the State Ethics Commission. He pleaded guilty to two ethics violations, was publicly reprimanded by the State Ethics Commission and ordered to pay a $3,000 fine. His actions were comically described as “inadvertent and unintentional”. Despite these transgressions, the majority on the School Board rated his performance as “proficient” by a 7 to 2 vote and rewarded him with a $33,000 bonus. There’s no way that should have happened. Moss needs to do the right thing and give back his bonus to the School District. This money could be put to better use in the classrooms. His unethical behavior should not be rewarded. What kind of message does that send to our students? Act in an unethical manner and be awarded a big payout. This makes no sense, and it is just plain wrong.