637 petitions

Update posted 2 days ago

Petition to Anaheim Union High School District Board of Trustees, Liliana Carrillo

Please reinstate Ms. Harvey's teaching position.

On April 16, 2017, Cypress High School’s choral program learned that their new director, Ms. Melanie Harvey, was to be laid off due to budget cuts proceeding the end of the 2016-2017 school year. The district has ensured that the choral program will remain intact, but our director, Ms. Harvey, has lost her job. Ms. Harvey is the single greatest thing that has ever happened to this program and we students believe that with the support of our community, the AUHSD Board of Trustees will hopefully acknowledge Ms. Harvey’s impact on our lives and education, and how essential she is to the program. With your participation in this petition, you are contributing to the fight to keep strong arts programs in the education system. We must emphasize the importance of music education and the fine arts as it is generally overlooked. Every signature helps us let our voice be heard. Thank you for your time and support for students, the arts, and a dedicated teacher. Thank you for using your voice to help a teacher that has allowed her students to find theirs. BACKGROUND Ms. Harvey is a first-year teacher at Cypress High School, and was vulnerable to the budget cuts due to her low seniority, but has grown the choral program to new heights. Ms. Harvey is the hardest working and most influential person we have ever had the honor to have as an instructor. Her impact on the Cypress choral program includes, but is not limited to: The number of students signed up for the upcoming school year (2017-18) has doubled in comparison to the current school year (2016-17). Ms. Harvey combines show choir and concert choir into the curriculum, giving students a strong background to classical music education, and a show choir (singing and dancing) experience. She is also dedicated to making sure students are proficient in music theory. Ms. Harvey offered to teach a separate music class to the Special Education students at Cypress High School, but since she has been terminated that class is no longer for sure being taught. Whoever replaces her has the decision to take it or not, and it is a difficult class to teach for some teachers. Ms. Harvey was actually excited and eager to teach and give this opportunity to the Special Education students. Ms. Harvey organized and directed four choir shows the past school year, as well as taking the advanced group, High Voltage, to four show choir competitions, and to one choral festival along with the beginning level group, Shockwaves.  Ms. Harvey organizes after school and weekend rehearsals, taking time out of her own personal life for the students. Ms. Harvey teaches not only music, but life lessons and morals. She teaches integrity, teamwork skills, and confidence. The budget cuts by the State of California left Cypress High School without an on campus drama/theatre class, and threatened the existence of the dance program. They also completely cut the floral program. Students feel as if their arts programs are slowly diminishing. (As shown through the hashtag #savechsarts on Instagram) The arts is a calling to many students who are passionate about what they create. It is something that they can rely on for stability and communal support every single day when they walk into a choir, drama, or dance classroom. Cypress has had a different choir director every single year for the past three years. This has hindered the choral program from growing and stabilizing. If the teaching position is changed once again for the 2017-2018 school year, the program will repeat the cycle of having to reform and rebuild. Ms. Harvey was hired from outside of the district specifically for our class because there was no one else qualified for the position she took. If she leaves, then who will teach us? This causes emotional stress on the students, but also puts Ms. Harvey out of work. Every student deserves a strong music education. Ms. Harvey has provided Cypress High School with that, and could continue to impact more students’ lives with your support.  

Brandon Garcia
1,474 supporters
Update posted 5 days ago

Petition to Michael Mulgrew (President of the United Federation of Teachers), Bill de Blasio, Carmen Fariña, Laura Feijoo, Yuet Chu, Alexandra Estrella

Save Central Park East 1 Elementary School!

Central Park East 1 is an elementary school in East Harlem with a forty-year history of progressive, child-centered education.  During recent years of endless education reforms, the school has grappled with how to balance its commitment to equity and progressive pedagogy with increasingly politicized demands for data and high-stakes testing. Its opt-out rate last year was 81%. In a city of all too many segregated schools, Central Park East 1 is uniquely integrated and diverse.  Over the last nine months, Principal Monika Garg and Superintendent Alexandra Estrella have ignored the outreach and concerns of large groups of parents and the School Leadership Team (SLT), disregarded longstanding democratic policies and practices of our community, launched investigations of tenured teachers, and subjected young children to interviews by the principal and an unknown man--believed to be Deputy Superintendent Thomas McBryde and/or an officer from from the city’s special investigations unit.  These interviews of children were conducted without notifying parents and without a rationale for their necessity. No precautions were taken to ensure children’s psychological and emotional safety.  These actions, some of the most egregious in a very long list, reveal a disturbing pattern of administrative mistreatment of our community.   It is for the above reasons that we request that Mayor Bill de Blasio and Chancellor Carmen Farina take the following actions: 1) Remove the current school leader, Ms. Monika Garg, from her post; 2) Provide external oversight, transparency, and authentic community engagement in a process to hire a new principal (referred to as the C-30), including a temporary interim acting school leader if necessary; and 3) Establish a separate district to better support the unique needs of progressive schools.  -------- Note: When signing, please use the personal message text box to tell us your relationship to CPE1: current parent, alumni, friend, etc.  Thank you. 

Save CPE1
2,973 supporters
Update posted 6 days ago

Petition to Jerome Webster, John Kasich, Kathleen S. Tighe, Rob Portman, Sherrod Brown

Stop Terra State Community College's unethical behaviors!

Terra State Community College has unethically practiced lying to their students to collect FAFSA & out of pocket student money; while I was trying to enroll to further my education there, I was a person this happened to. This is something everyone needs to be aware of, so they won't do this to future students! After signing up for classes at TSCC, I was forced to withdrawal after finding out from the financial aid department that I was not going to be eligible for aid. The woman working the financial aid center proceeded to tell me I was still in period to drop classes and I would not be penalized for the rest of the semester’s tuition. So essentially she explained that the drop period was the same thing as the refund period, misleading and outright lying to me. She even went as far to pull up their calendar to point out I had a few days left to “drop my classes without being penalized financially, with the exception of not receiving my original first months payment to the school”. Seeing as this was her job, to give me the best advice for my situation, I did what she advised and dropped from my classes because I knew I would not have enough money to pay out of pocket. Returning the next semester, with my FAFSA already approved, I was told I could not register for classes because my school account was on a hold. I was then instructed to file an appeal to the school. I did so, twice. Come to find out, ironically enough, my first appeal was never filed. Somehow the school “lost it”. Literally months went by without getting any return response from Terra Community College. No response from either appeal I filed, and of course nothing back from any of the phone calls I made up to the institution asking for answers. Trying to get anything back from the school I then contacted Jerome Webster. After explaining the situation, I guess Doctor Webster had decided that it wasn't worth his time and immediately passed it off to Cory Stine: Vice President of Institutional Advancement. I was contacted by Mr. Stine one time in total, when I was unavailable at work. He left me a message with his contact information and I was never able to get into contact with him. Every time I called his secretary would say that Mr. Stine was unavailable or that he was going to be out of the office for extended periods of time. I left countless messages trying to receive a return phone call, but it never came. The last time I had called Mr. Stine's office was the day I was told he would be back from a two week absence and when I called that day I was informed he would be unavailable for another week. Finally, I decided this was unacceptable and I wanted to speak with someone that day! I did receive a phone call, from Terra's financial aid department. Once again I explained the situation and the woman on the other end of the phone laughed. She went on to say that “it was impossible that had happened and that I should have known that my financial aid wasn't going to go through, I should have thought about not being able to afford classes that before enrolling at their institution, and this was now your (my) problem”. It’s not only frustrating to not only be belittled by someone whose literal job is to advise students financially, but to also be called a liar. That's absolutely unacceptable. A few more months went by. Obviously I was unable to continue my education at Terra, so I selected another institution to follow through with my studies. When transferring to my current institution, Ohio Business College required information from Terra to complete my new financial aid. Again, hesitant to even talk to anyone at Terra, I called up to the school. Speaking to someone, who I believe was part of the records department, I was told that I could not have access to any of my school information; violating my FERPA rights. For a second time, I emailed Terra's president Doctor Webster. This time he pawned me off on Heath Martin Dean of Students and Enrollment. While he did provide me with the correct documentation and a phone conference to discuss the events of what had happened, he failed to resolve ‘my problem’ that was caused by Terra's faculty. Speaking with Mr. Martin, he essentially summed up for me that it's acceptable for their employees to lie and swindle students, having no reasoning as to why it was ok that their financial aid department either 1. Lied to me or 2. Did not have the sufficient knowledge to accurately guide students in making important financial decisions. Therefore, this leaves TSCC at fault because regardless of how you look at it their faculty was not correctly doing their job. He then continued on to tell me he had signed documentation from an orientation in which I never attended. Wanting a copy of this information, and knowing I’m in a tight financial situation being a single unemployed mother, he maliciously told me that I would have to pay for any of the paperwork I had filed with the school. I was set up by this school to be swindled out of my money. When a student goes to a financial aid department at a school, they should be able to confidently trust what they are being told. This was not the case at Terra State Community College. To try and settle this once and for all I filed with the Department of Education. They dismissed my case, and I learned quite a few shocking things. 1. I was eligible for aid that semester. I was lead to believe that I would not have any funds to be dispersed by TSCC's financial aid the day I withdrew from my classes.  2. Because the TSCC financial aid worker was not educated for their job, they mislead me to believe that the drop period was what the school considers to be a refund period. When I unenrolled for classes they described the drop period as "a period where the student would not be held accountable for the remaining tuition. Although, would not receive the first month's payment towards classes back". In addition, many people have now come forward to say very similar instances have occurred. I have also heard several corresponding stories ultimately coming to the same conclusion of a student wrongly being charged because of a mistake made on TSCC's behalf. I beg you to hear my story. Help me stop what this school is doing; it's wrong. A school should help try to better it's students, not treat them like disposable pieces of garbage. TSCC needs to be held accountable & responsible for their actions. They need to acknowledge all of these students they have wronged and not only apologize but make things right by keeping their word. Respect, honesty, and integrity are core values I take very seriously. For TSCC to be an institution that claims to have values of "relationships, learning, integrity, and innovation", they should really re-evaluate calling a group of people trying to better their education "liars" when they are indeed actually the ones at fault. Thank you so much for your time!

Kristen Todd
109 supporters
Update posted 2 weeks ago

Petition to We the students of LPS can get rid of these dress codes by all coming together, Students

Getting rid of dress codes at LPS

I want to solve the issue of dress codes at my school Leadership, they limit a unique community and a good student environment. I will write my essay that I did on it below.   Dress codes are seen in our schools today, including LPS at the moment.  Dress codes as maybe not expected, are completely a problem, and as a student at a school with a dress code, I can confirm this myself. Dress codes limit one's self-expression and uniqueness.  Furthermore, dress codes make it so students are unable to be unique and they make people look the same.  It makes us all the same typical, boring student. Of course, I can understand the teacher's point of view and the reward system on Fridays, but at the same time, kids need to know that they can have the choice to be themselves and be unique. Dress codes usually have sexist connotations or, making men seem like perverts and that women should be covered. I think that this mindset is a problem for not only this school but at any other. Students shouldn’t be concerning over what to wear and if it’s dress code approved, because that can make students late or even when they get to school be dress coded and arrive even later because having to change clothing.I understand that school is a professional setting and that we should wear collared shirts, but is what wearing what we like keeping us from learning?  The answer is no, of course not, but it can be best for students to wear something they are comfortable with during school hours so they can feel more confident. If this school is really supposed to prepare us for college, a place where there are no dress codes what so ever why are we wearing them now? Not all jobs require one to wear a dress code that is extremely strict. The teachers have a less strict dress code than students, that I have noticed. A school is a place where students should be treated equally in my perspective. Creativity and uniqueness are what we came here to the school with that can be taken away from us by not having the liberty to dress how we desire. What we wear is a form of uniqueness. We all wear unique clothing on Fridays, as a cosplayer myself I feel that being creative is what makes things so fun. Wearing what we desire can make students happier and eager to learn more. Our adults from the school should listen to us more. They should pay more attention to what we desire. We want certain things that can make us each ourselves. Making friends can be easier.  For instance, people may say “I know that cartoon, I love your shirt.”  This can start a conversation and possibly a new friendship. People say that maybe seeing more expensive clothing can lead to bullying, in my opinion, bullying can happen in any scenario so clothing should not be of matter. Many families don’t have a lot of money and can’t afford to buy school uniforms and collared shirts. That is also a huge issue it would benefit families more.   One of my peers, Alondra Campos, said: “My family would find it more useful to not waste money on uniforms when that money can be used on more important things.” Uniforms can be very expensive for some families. Do I personally believe LPS should change their policy about dress codes and uniforms? Absolutely. In conclusion, uniforms and dress codes are a problem, either it can limit a student's creativity, increase money problems, and it is time-consuming. Dress codes can make children think more about their clothing rather than the test they may have that day. The major excuse is that dress codes help you prepare for the future, while anyone can dress professionally, they don’t teach high schoolers how to wear a tie or a suit. Of course, I believe teachers should pay more attention to what will make students high school experience more pleasant, that is reasonable.

147 supporters