December 15, 2011

Advocacy makes a difference on vouchers and charter school expansion

In response to a last minute effort to pass vouchers and expand charter schools, parents, teachers, support professionals, and community leaders took immediate action.  In just the last four weeks, advocates spoke out by sending legislators more than 140,000 postcards saying “We are the 2/3 of Pennsylvanians opposed to tuition vouchers,” along with more than 50,000 emails, phone calls, and letters.

The General Assembly listened.

On December 14, the state House of Representatives abandoned efforts to pass Gov. Corbett's tuition voucher plan, hearing the concerns of two-thirds of Pennsylvanians who oppose this bad policy. 

Shortly after, state representatives voted down a charter expansion bill by a vote of 105-90.

This is a significant victory for our public schools and the students who learn there.

Pennsylvania's public schools are increasing class sizes and cutting programs because of unprecedented state budget cuts. Vouchers and charter school expansion would have made school districts’ bad funding situation even worse.

More challenges lie ahead in 2012, and we will continue to focus on investing in public schools and restoring the governor's unprecedented public school funding cuts.

We will urge the General Assembly to focus on strategies proven to work, including early childhood education, safe and secure schools, and individualized attention through smaller class sizes and programs like tutoring, and community supports.  We will continue to oppose vouchers and unaccountable charter schools.

Learn more about PSEA’s Solutions That Work, our Association’s blueprint for real school reforms, at

Thank you to all who speak up for Pennsylvania public schools and our students’ future.




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