Image for post
Image for post

*****
If you are a School Committee member and would like to add your name to this letter, please fill out this form:
https://forms.gle/x1zzWU9xGoZRL4Ui9
*****

TO:

Governor Charlie Baker
Education Secretary James Peyser
DESE Commissioner Jeffrey Riley
Senate President Karen Spilka
House Speaker Robert DeLeo
Senate Committee on Ways and Means Chair Michael Rodrigues
House Committee on Ways and Means Chair Aaron Michlewitz
Joint Education Committee Co-Chair Jason Lewis
Joint Education Committee Co-Chair Alice Peisch
Gateway Cities Caucus Co-Chair Eric Lesser
Gateway Cities Caucus Co-Chair Antonio Cabral

RE: Low-Income Count and Student Opportunity Act FY21 Funding

Earlier this year, a group of over 150 School Committee members, City Councilors, Superintendents and educator union presidents from across the 26 Gateway Cities sent a letter asking lawmakers to fully fund our schools for FY21. Today, as School Committee members from across the state, we are reiterating the call for fully-funding the first-year implementation of the Student Opportunity Act (SOA), and also demanding that the Legislature fix the low-income count in the foundation formula so our students can receive the resources they need to have a free appropriate public education. …

Front of the Massachusetts State House on a sunny day.
Front of the Massachusetts State House on a sunny day.
Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/cmhpictures/11541656803

June 23, 2020

TO:
Governor Charlie Baker
Education Secretary James Peyser
Education Commissioner Jeffrey Riley
Senate President Karen Spilka
House Speaker Robert DeLeo
Senate Committee on Ways and Means Chair Michael Rodrigues
House Committee on Ways and Means Chair Aaron Michlewitz
Joint Education Committee Co-Chair Jason Lewis
Joint Education Committee Co-Chair Alice Peisch
Gateway Cities Caucus Co-Chair Eric Lesser
Gateway Cities Caucus Co-Chair Antonio Cabral

RE: Chapter 70 Funding for Gateway Cities in FY21

Last year, educational equity in Massachusetts received its biggest win in decades with the passage of the Student Opportunity Act (SOA). Our 26 Gateway Cities have been severely underfunded for years, to the tune of several billions of dollars, and one of the main reasons for passing the SOA was to right this wrong. This year, our Gateway Cities were due to receive a desperately-needed additional $217.5 million, more than 70% of the new aid, but due to the $4–7 billion revenue shortfall we expect due to the COVID-19 pandemic, that funding is now at risk. Unless we take drastic action, the promises our Legislature made to our children in the Education Reform Act of 1993 and reaffirmed in the Student Opportunity Act will remain unfulfilled once again. …

Image for post
Image for post

Editor’s Note: If you would like to support Chelsea’s community through this challenging time, you can donate to the One Chelsea Fund, which was established by Chelsea community leaders, together with City Manager Tom Ambrosino, in partnership with The United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley, to help families and individuals who are severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

CHELSEA, Mass. — My wife and I moved to Chelsea to we could start our family in a predominantly Latinx community. Chelsea is more than 60% Latinx and almost half immigrant, many of whom are undocumented. …

Image for post
Image for post

By Roberto A. Jiménez Rivera

Long before beginning our home-buying process, my wife Sarah and I decided that we wanted to start our family in a predominantly Latinx community. Thinking of our future children, we wanted to foster a connection to my Puerto Rican heritage, allow them to develop strong Latinx identities, and enable them to become fully fluent in Spanish.

It almost seemed like destiny when we found Chelsea, MA. Close to our jobs, not (yet) gentrified, relatively affordable, and with a public school system that is 86.6% Latinx, Chelsea seemed like an ideal place to raise our future children and develop long-term community relationships. …

Image for post
Image for post
University of Michigan Law Quad — CC Image courtesy of Elizabeth on Flickr

During high school, my dream was to leave Puerto Rico and go to college in one of the fifty states. Having done well in school, I felt ready to tackle this — the biggest challenge I could think of at the time. My parents encouraged me to pursue this dream but had no idea how to go about it or whether we could afford it. The guidance counselor at my small-town Catholic school had little experience with the traditional U.S. college admissions process, so over many months I scoured the internet trying to determine where and how to apply, and most importantly, how to pay for it. Somehow, I made it to the University of Michigan, and became the first person in my family to enroll in a university on the U.S. …

About

Roberto Jimenez

Chelsea School Committee Member

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store