Parents to Discuss Lack of Accountability and Funding Losses in Prince George’s County School System with Donna Edwards

WHAT:  Parents’ Bilingual Roundtable on Education

WHO:  CASA in Action President Gustavo Torres, Prince George’s County Executive Candidate and Former Maryland Congresswoman Donna Edwards, and Prince George’s County Latino parents

WHEN:  Wednesday, May 16, 2018 at 5 PM

WHERE: CASA Multicultural Center (MCC), 8151 15th Ave Langley Park, MD 20783

VISUALS: 

  • Parents and high school students will ask Donna Edwards questions in a roundtable setting. 

  • B-roll opportunities with children reading books in the CASA corner library.

  • High school students will write their dreams on bulletin board during event. 

LANGLEY PARK, MD (MONDAY, MAY 14) – Concerned for their children after recent controversies with educators and administrators, Prince George’s County parents will meet with Donna Edwards to discuss the setbacks, struggles and the future of low-income and immigrant students in Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS).

Multiple Maryland leaders – including Donna Edwards and Ben Jealous – called for the resignation of County public schools CEO Kevin Maxwell, which came months after a string of investigations into child sexual abuse, grade-fixing, and unauthorized pay increases were brought to light.

During the 2016-17 school year, more than 500 employees, mostly teachers, were put on administrative leave for alleged child abuse or neglect. To add insult to injury, Prince George’s County also lost a $6.3 million federal grant for Head Start funding in 2016 – which occurred not only because of the initial allegations of abuse but also due to poor teacher training and central office mismanagement.

“After seeing the constant failures, parents question the moral turpitude and competence of Prince George’s County’s current leadership,” said Gustavo Torres, CASA in Action President. “They are eager to find a champion that will deliver on their promises of a brighter future for their children. The bilingual roundtable will let parents get to know Donna Edwards’ education policy priorities in detail and see how it fits with what they are looking for.”

Parents will ask about the Head Start program, in light of former Congresswoman Edwards’ pledge to regain millions in lost federal grant funding. According to Maryland’s Kindergarten Readiness Assessment, in 2018, Prince George’s County ranked dead last across the state in preparing only 34 percent of youngsters to succeed in school.

As the County moves into the implementation phase of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), parents will ask questions about Ms. Edwards’ plans for parent and community member engagement and school district accountability under her leadership as County Executive.

Parents will also ask about the potential once-in-a-generation increase in statewide education funding that is currently being studied and proposed by the Kirwan Commission for Innovation and Excellence as well as the opportunities for adopting local strategies for school improvement that mirror those best practice recommendations here in Prince George’s County.

Lastly, parents will ask Edwards about the Community School model – a proven, evidence-based approach to providing wraparound services and pathways to the middle class for the nearly 10 percent of Prince George’s families living in poverty.

CASA in Action, a 501(c)(4) organization, is the foremost Latino and immigrant organization in the Mid-Atlantic region and a national leader in supporting immigrant families and ensuring that all individuals have the core supports necessary for full participation in society. CASA in Action and CASA in Action PAC endorse candidates that advance its membership’s priorities and facilitates greater engagement of Latinos and voters of color in elections. With nearly 100,000 members, CASA in Action is an individual membership organization of low-income immigrants.  Donations to CASA in Action are not tax-deductible.

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