When it comes to education news and policy we are used to hearing about the involvement of a union. However, typically the unions only represent the teachers. A new organization wants to change that.
The National Parents Union is aiming to be exactly what its name implies, an organization that elevates the voice, and interests of parents and by extension, their children into the national conversation. Per the organization’s website:
“NPU unites parents of color, low-income parents, special needs parents, single mothers and fathers, grandparents, formerly incarcerated parents and parents in recovery with traditionally represented parent voices to join a vibrant coalition that disrupts the traditional role of parent voice in policy space. It develops a new narrative that is inclusive of families from a wide variety of perspectives.”
The organization is being started by two Latina mothers, Alma Marquez, and Keri Rodrigues. They are uniquely qualified and experienced to lead such an organization due to their experience with Green Dot Public Schools and Service Employees International Union (SEIU) respectively.
The National Parents Union will likely face opposition from the established teachers’ unions on certain issues. A fact that Marquez maintains highlights the very need for the organization. Via: Fox News
“They will go to bat for their members, but not for kids,” she said. “They are opposed to things that would benefit children. That’s why the National Parents Union is so powerful and so important because we need to counterbalance the narrative.
“Walking out on kids during a strike for example, in schools that have zero percent proficiency is appalling,” Marquez continued. “And those people should be ashamed of themselves. There are schools in L.A. with zero percent proficiency in math and English, and those teachers were striking. What is wrong with this picture?”
The National Parents Union is not the first or only attempt to organize parents around education. There are other organizations with similar goals and even names. However, the National Parents Union is one of the few seeking to operate “in the same manner” as the comparable teacher organizations, but from the parent’s point of view.
The organization’s immediate goal is to push important education issues to the surface in the 2020 election.
Read more here.