Thanks to you and your neighbors, this morning I delivered 1,213 petition signatures in support of the Quality Choice Plan to Superintendent Johnson, Mayor Menino and the External Advisory Committee.
The Quality Choice Plan is an alternative proposal for groundbreaking student assignment reform that I presented two weeks ago with State Representatives Linda Dorcena Forry, Russell Holmes, Ed Coppinger, Nick Collins, and Councilor Matt O'Malley. The Quality Choice Plan grew out of countless meetings with parents across the City, and I am so proud to be a part of this effort with you.
If you haven’t yet done so, please join your neighbors in showing that you support the Quality Choice Plan by signing the petition today.
If you already signed the petition, thank you! Please help us spread the word by posting this link to Facebook, or emailing the link to your friends and family who live in Boston: www.qualitychoiceplan.com.
If you’re willing to help collect signatures by hand, please reply to this email and I’ll send you the materials you need.
YOUR STUDENT ASSIGNMENT STORIES
I also want to take a moment to share a few stories with you from supporters of the Quality Choice Plan. All of these stories are shared with permission, and show the breadth of support from across Boston.
“My children attend the Curley K-8, a quality school in our neighborhood. Because of our proximity to the school, they will not be affected by any student assignment plan currently under consideration. This is so because we are geographically lucky. Luck, however, should not play a roll in any child's educational experience. Proximity to a school does not guarantee consistent access to quality under any of the five BPS School Choice plans. The Quality Choice Plan does. I respectfully ask that you consider this plan, because no child should need luck to get a quality education.” – A parent from Jamaica Plain.
"My husband and I want to build a community around a school, so I like that this plan guarantees a seat at one of the four neighborhood schools. It takes the guesswork out of choosing a school. The lottery is anxiety provoking, so knowing that there is one of four is great. In addition, having arts, music, enrichment in every school is fantastic- it offers kids a stimulating environment." – A parent from Lower Mills.
“I am an Allston-Brighton resident and my daughter has been entered in the BPS lottery twice. We have been lucky both times to get a coveted spot. First as K0 in the Baldwin ELC and now as K2 in the Mary Lyon K-8. Both instances of the lottery have been nervewracking for me, as I am a single parent with limited resources and not going to public schools was not an option. Our friends in the community have not been as fortunate. Some were waitlisted. Others didn't get a spot until K2 and some enrolled in private school because the K2 spot they got wasn't in the school they wanted. It doesn't make sense to not have a spot in a school near home. I have been following the BPS proposals and this one makes the most sense. [The Quality Choice Plan] has a clear plan for improving public schools across all neighborhoods and is not just lines redrawn on the map. Although the latest news is that we will be grandfathered into our school, a relief to be sure, I am supporting this plan so parents have a real choice and are able to send their kids to a school close to home. The lottery should not be a negative experience and a source of conflict. I like that the Quality Choice plan seeks to improve equity by increasing the inclusion and dual language schools and increase funding by attracting more students to enroll in public schools in Boston.” – A parent from Allston.
“We have a young family and are currently considering if, how, and when to leave Boston due to the unpredictability of the school selection process. These kind of changes would make staying much more compelling. For the record, most of my childhood I attended and then graduated from Boston Public Schools. Please seriously consider this proposal.” – A parent from Melville Park.
Do you have your own student assignment story? If so, please share it at www.qualitychoiceplan.com.
Thank you for your feedback and advice during the Student Assignment Reform process. This issue is so important to me and I truly value everything we’ve been able to accomplish so far. I will keep fighting, but I’d love your help – please e-mail me if you can join us by collecting petition signatures.
John R. Connolly
Boston City Councilor At-Large