Representation Matters, Urgent Action Needed

Chicago Public Schools, Civic Action, Legislation | 05/18/2021

Tommorrow Snyder
Regional Organizing Director

There’s a superpower that we as a City have not tapped into enough. It’s the power of representation.

When our children see leaders who look like them, it uplifts their self-esteem. It shows them they have a role in shaping the future of this great but challenged city.

That’s why I care deeply about who serves on the Chicago Board of Education and whether they are elected or appointed.

I am a proud, Black single mother of an amazing high school student. My work at Stand takes me to southside schools like O’Keeffe, where I served as president of the local school council. And to Arthur Ashe Elementary, where I found myself one day being the only Black person in a group visiting a classroom.

A student with hair like mine (except she had beautiful purple highlights) came up and said, “I like your braids! You must be important to be here with all these white people.”

You can stand up for the power of representation by shaping who will lead Chicago Public Schools for generations to come. On Wednesday, May 19, at 2:30 pm, the Senate Executive Committee will vote on House Bill 2908. This bill is not the solution to the representation problems at CPS and will not ensure the board represents the diversity of Chicago. I ask that you oppose this bill.

Your opposition to House Bill 2908 will tell Springfield that the Chicago Board of Education must represent the diversity of our City. I like a lot about this bill, and we need elected seats on the Board, but lawmakers need to keep negotiating and do better by our children.

The system hasn’t made it easy to oppose bills. It takes about four minutes to file a “witness slip” but we cannot be deterred. Please join me.

  1. Click this link.
  2. Complete Section I. For title, you might say parent, concerned citizen, voter, education advocate, etc.
  3. In Section III, select “Opponent.”
  4. In Section IV, select “Record of Appearance.”
  5. Check “I agree to the ILGA Terms of Agreement.”
  6. Select “Create(Slip).”

If you need help, email us at ILinfo@stand.org.

We need you to oppose House Bill 2908 by 2:30 pm Central on Wednesday, May 19. But do it right now, while you can.

Children need to see people who look like them in roles of influence so they can know that one day, they too could be that teacher, artist, or community leader, including a Board of Education member.

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