Wednesday, January 7, 2015

5 Lessons from Selma the Movie

Ahead of the national release, I had the opportunity to view Selma the Movie at a local screening hosted by State Delegate, Michael Futrell (my husband). Within the first 5 minutes of the movie, I was moved to tears to see how far we have come as a nation and how far we have to go. I was reminded of the true power of the people in advancing agendas that benefit ALL Americans.

This blog describes five (5) Lessons from Selma the Movie that I hope all parents consider.

Register and VOTE

The first is simply registering and voting in all elections, especially local elections. Local elections not only influence who will make it to the federal and state ballots, BUT they determine whom the voices at the table will be for local matters important to all parents such as school governance (public and private). Elections are the starting line when it comes to all issues. As parents, we must be at that starting line in order to influence the decisions that directly affect our children.

Attend at least one school board meeting every year

The second is to attend at least one school board meeting every school year. Not only are the polls important to register your voice, parents must also register their voices at the local school board meetings. It would be ideal if parents could attend every board meeting but in reality that may be tough for most parents, there for I encourage you to review the public agendas and check for topics that are of most interest to you and attend.

Voice your opinion on the School Board and the City/County Budget

The third is to voice your opinion during budget discussions for the School Board and your City/County Board of supervisors. All governing bodies that use public funds are required by law to submit proposed operating budgets for public comment. Most Boards do this during a regularly scheduled board meeting. As a parent you can take advantage of these meetings to share your comments or you can simply write or call your representative during the budget “season”.

Volunteer and Join the PTA

The fourth is to support educators by volunteering or joining the PTA. Support our teachers. Support those who work daily to provide love, support, and guidance to your children. You have a lot offer and schools can benefit from a wide array of experiences that parents of students can offer.

Advocate for ALL kids

The final is to advocate for what is best for ALL kids - not just your own. While the lessons above are important to advancing our interests as parents for our children. I encourage you to consider advocating for “Other’s People Kids” too in your advocacy.  Many issues that do not directly affect our kitchen tables may affect students whose parents may not be in a position of advocacy. 

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