VOICES FOR EDUCATION
Inproving Arizona’s Public Schools
The need for public education improvement in Arizona is great. Arizona’s 272 school districts serve the needs of over 900.000 students in Kindergarten through 12th grade. Our class sizes are the second highest in the nation. We have the country’s highest high school dropout rate. And Arizon consistently ranks at the bottom in per-pupil spending.
Voices for Education is working to improve this system, and we need everyone’s help.
Voices for Education is an organization made up of parents, educators and community members working together to improve the educational outcomes of Arizona’s children.
Voices for education his three goals:
. Reduce class sizes in grades k-3 to no more than 18 students
. Increase parent engagement in public schools
. Increase funding of public schools statewide
We carry out these goals though three main activities: developing parent leaders, researching and undertaking public policy analysis and building public awareness.
Developing Parent Leaders
Voices for Education give parents the information, tools and skills they need to become effective advocates in their children’s school and school district.
Our Parent Leadership Institues reach out to parent activists who want to work to improve education for all Arizona’s children. The intensive one-day orientation and training followed by weekly meetings for eight weeks covers understanding school policy making, analyzing school budgets, the benefits of smaller clases, increasing parent engagement, understanding standards and assessment, promoting reading, plus action strategies for carry out change.
Voices for Edujcation also offers half-day workshops on school site councils, educating parents about this local decision-making body and encouraging their participation in their school’s site council.
Analyzing Public Policy
Voices for Education believes that education policy should be grounded in credible research and analysis. For example, our research demonstrates that k-3 students in small classes (under 18) have improved math and reading skills, out perform their peers in larger classes, and are more likely to graduate from high school. Voices has analyzed how other states have reduced class sizes, summarized research studies, and investigated legislation. This work has been used by state legislators, school districts and parents as they work to reduce class sizes and increase funding.
Copies of our reports on class size and other education issues are available on our website: www.voicesforeducation.org:
. Smaller Classes, Brighter Futures: The Benefits of Reducing Class Size in Arizona
. Making Connections: Facing the Dropout Crisis in Arizona
. Money Matters: A School Budget Primer
. Arizona School Trust Lands: Our Children’s Legacy, Our Responsibility (Video also)
Building Public Awareness
Voices for Education works to ensure firm public support for schools by raising awareness of the importance of a strong public education system and the ways to improve public education in Arizona. We work with the media, providing information for stories on education issues. We host community forums on educational reform and provide speakers to civic and community groups.
Voices for Education also provides timely messages to members of the public who are concerned about public education issues. We track education bills in the Arizona Legislature, and send e-mail elerts when elected officials should be contacted about pending bills.
Plese contact us if you or your organization would like further information about public education issues in Arizona.
How to Help
All donations to Voices for Education are fully tax-deductible. Check with your employer about matching gifts. Voices for Education is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
How to Contact Us
Voices for Education maintains a website at: www.voicesforeducation.org
Telephone Tucson: 520-324-0881 Phoenix: 602-271-1911
Mail: Voices for Education P.O. Box 44200 Tucson, Az 85733