Thursday, June 23, 2011


The Senate and House Leadership are in the final stretch of budget negotiations.  If you have 2 minutes this morning please contact Senate Majority Leader Pileggi and House Majority Leader Turzai ASK THEM NOT TO INCLUDE CONTROVERSIAL VOUCHER OR CHARTER SCHOOL LEGISLATION IN THE BUDGET DEAL.  If you 2 minutes more please contact the floor leaders also.  If you are registered Republican please consider letting them know that.  (The Democrats are not involved in the budget negotiations.)


Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi
Office: 717-787-4712
Fax: 717-783-7490

Representative Mike Turzai, House Majority Leader
(717) 772-9943 
Fax: (717) 772-2470

Senate Majority Floor Leader Pat Browne
FAX: 717-772-3458

Representative Stan Saylor, House Floor Leader
(717) 783-6426 
Fax: (717) 783-7655



During the past few months we have periodically faxed pertinent articles to all members of the General Assembly.  Some of them actually get read.  Midday Tuesday I got a call from House Ed Committee Majority Chairman Paul Clymer's office asking if I would be available to testify at a Wednesday morning hearing on school choice on behalf of the Keystone State Education Coalition.  Tuesday evening at 6:00 pm I received 246 pages of proposed new voucher and charter school legislation via email.  I cobbled together 20 pages of testimony, printed up 30 copies and hit the road early Wednesday morning looking forward to testifying………



Philadelphia Inquirer,WEDNESDAY, JUNE 22, 2011, By Amy Worden
Storm clouds swirled around a House committee room in the Capitol today after objections were raised about a "lack of sunshining" on a hearing to address the hot button issue of tuition vouchers.  With a packed house looking on, education committee chairman Rep. Paul Clymer (R., Bucks) abruptly canceled the hearing after the ranking Democrat on the committee,  Rep.  James Roebuck (D., Phila.) said the public had not been given proper notice of the meeting.


PSBA Legislative Alert/Take Action/Talking Points

House Ed Committee Abruptly Cancels Hearings on Vouchers, Charters  June 22, 2011

It is unlikely that the hearings will be rescheduled since they are not required in order to consider any piece of legislation.  However, the cancellation of the hearings does not impact the ability of the General Assembly to push voucher and charter school proposals through now,  before the summer break.
The proposals that are expected to move are new plans that are just now being introduced or not yet introduced. This is happening in the face of massive amounts of pressure and dollars being spent by out-of-state interest groups to push vouchers through now while they believe they have the momentum to do so. That means legislators will be asked to approve bills that create a major shift in education policy without appropriate time to study and consider the language or seek constituent input.[capwiz:queue_id]


Posted on Wed, Jun. 22, 2011

John Baer: Taking $$ from both sides

By John Baer , Daily News Political Columnist
AS THE LEGISLATURE focuses on creating a school-voucher law that is - depending on where you sit - either a cure or a Dr. Kevorkian for public education, there's an interesting political backdrop in the picture.  Members of Philly's legislative delegation, a group historically Democratic, pro-public schools and generously underwritten by teachers unions, are taking money from both sides of the debate.


Great OP/ED: Public schools cornerstone of democratic society


Ravitch: Why I am marching on July 30

Washington Post Answer Sheet Blog By Valerie StraussPosted at 02:41 PM ET, 06/22/2011



Public Education Stakeholders can use Education Voters PA website to email and call your local legislators regarding the budget and keeping vouchers out of the budget bill.

Please forward this link to any public education stakeholders


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