Philadelphia Schools have opened this week with unprecedented problems because of budget cuts and lay-offs. One way we can fight back is by documenting these problems, filinng formal complaints and bringing pressure to bear on those responsbile to provide our schools with the resources they need. The conditions in the schools violate the Pennsylvania Constitution which says that the state must have a “thorough and efficient system of public education.” The state school code has specific requirements that schools provide instruction in various subjects and support services like counselling. If presented with complaints the Secretary of Education has a responsibility to act.
Parents United and the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia have launched a campaign to educate parents around their rights and systematically collect complaints. A tool kit is available from the Parents United web site that includes information on how to file a complaint inlcuding the forms.
PCAPS supports this initiative. Teachers, students, and community members as well as parents can file complaints. This opens up another important front in the struggle to reverse these devastating budget cuts.