December 16, 2010

/ 16 December 2010 / Parents United
December 16, 2010

We’re Kicking Off the 2011 Legislative Session!
Join us for our second annual Legislative Kickoff on Saturday, January 8, 2011 from 9 – 11 am. Take part in sharing what we know about the upcoming legislative session and be part of some crystal ball moments! All wisdom welcome!!  There is no charge for this event but please let us know that you plan to attend.</p>

The 2011 legislative session begins on January 4 and by all accounts it will be a very difficult one: a $6 billion state budget deficit, a new governor and new leadership in both House and Senate. Spend two hours together on January 8 to Learn, Network and Act.

87% of Parents United’s 2011 fund-appeal goal reached!
Fully half of our annual operating funds come from individual donors and without your contributions we simply could not do what we do! We thank all of you who have joined our efforts, telling us with your donations that you value the work we do, that what we do matters, that you want to be part of the work. Help us reach our goal, please donate today!

Early Childhood Survey
Take a minute and complete this survey about the possibility of Minnesota having an Office of Early Learning. The feedback will be used for a report to the incoming governor and new legislature and they are seeking parent comments – especially from parents of diverse and at risk backgrounds. The survey will be live until Friday, December 17 and will take you about five minutes to fill out.

College for all – a terrific new resource
Our Parents United Leadership Summit in April was all about the new vision for our schools we are hearing so much about –“College for all.” We asked the question, What does that mean and is Minnesota ready for this?

Our speaker, Kent Pekel of the U of M’s College Readiness Consortium, did a remarkable job framing the issue and now his presentation is in video form. It is a terrific resource and can be watched in its entirety or in shorter segments. Take a look under Visioning Resources!

Ads on school lockers and in gyms and….
Selling advertising space in schools – schools which children are required to attend – should give us pause. The idea of schools paid for by the tax-paying public assumes those schools will reflect what that public believes should be taught. If advertisers are paying for schools are they, too, allowed to weigh in on what those schools teach our children? Is this really the legacy we want to hand our children? Let’s be clear, schools that are heading in this direction are doing so not for “extras” but to pay the bills.

What Can I do?</span>

  1. This is a terrific time for you to get to know your legislators. Whether they are old friends or new acquaintances, they represent you and WANT to know what you think. Write, email, call or visit with them. Host a coffee with a few friends and invite your legislator. Ask how they see the new session shaking out and share your thoughts with them.
  2. Arrange a Legislators-in-the-Schools Tour – especially if you are building a relationship with a newly elected legislator.
  3. Make sure you are signed on to receive the Parents United weekly legislative updates! Invite a few friends to join you in receiving these Updates!

Stay tuned and hold on – it is going to be quite the session!

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Mary Cecconi, Executive Director (
Parents United for Public Schools
1667 Snelling Avenue N., St. Paul, MN 55108



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