GROW statement at Waunakee School District Annual Meeting

Waunakee Community School District Annual Meeting
October 19, 2015

The Grassroots Organization of Waunakee would like to ask everyone present to take a moment to appreciate the significance of what we—the community, the teachers, the parents, the school board members and staff—are doing here.
Try to think of something we do as a friends and neighbors in a community that comes close to the value and significance of public education. We cannot.
Even setting aside the obvious value to each child as he or she learns academic and social skills and about the world around them, the value of what we do through our public schools is incalculable. 
Public schools serve as the beating heart of each neighborhood, bringing many families together in common cause. They provide a meeting place for all in the community, regardless of income, ethnicity, political leanings, religious affiliation, or disability. No institution other than the public school performs that critical function of growing a cohesive community from our diversity. Public schools provide benefits to people without children, as they raise the overall level of skills, competence, and cohesiveness in a community.
While public education provides shared benefits, it also represents a shared responsibility. Public education means that local teachers, locally elected school boards and local citizens who participate in school operation and governance direct, oversee and uphold the academic standards, the values and methods of operation employed in our local schools.
And, of course, public education represents a shared investment. We willingly and wisely pay significant taxes to ensure our community is well-educated. But we know that this stream of revenue continuously exerts a powerful attraction for wealth-driven interests. We know there are many who want to privatize schools so they can reroute our tax dollars to private profits instead of using them exclusively for public good.
We stand behind public education, paid for by the people of this community, governed by people of this community, delivered by people of this community, and for the benefit of this community. We thank the school board, the teachers, the staff, and all the involved parents. We will always stand with you in the interests of public education.

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