RESOLVED, that this 137th Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Newarkadopt asa high priority of our strategy on Domestic Poverty, a policy and plan of actionfor saving the Public Education system; and, be it further
RESOLVED, that the office of the Bishop of the Diocese is requested to write to the Mayors and Councils of all municipalities in the Diocese that provide public schools, the State Legislature of the State of New Jersey, the U.S. Senators of the State of New Jersey, the Governor of the State of New Jersey and the President of the United States, on the value and importance of an excellent public education system where the priority is on all children learning; and, be it further
RESOLVED, that every congregation of the Diocese of Newark is urged to launch a writing campaign urging local officials and legislators, both State and Federal, to develop policies and strategies that ensure adequate funding for excellent and equal education for all children.
More than ever in an era of globalization and expanded media, our country needs a vision of public education that produces in all communities, students whose literacy, numeracy and critical thinking skills enable them to become both economically autonomous and responsible citizens. In order for the United States to have a learned and skilled society of citizens, a publicly supported school system is a necessity; therefore the importance of public education in America should rank second only to protecting our country from outside armed attacks. In the long run, it is Public Education which greatly influences how we: relate to others, treat ourselves, compete in global markers, conserve and build the Nation’s and the world environment. Public Education helps to mold the very soul of the American people.
The purpose of the Millennium Development Goals which were affirmed by the Episcopal Church and which led the Presiding Bishop to develop a Domestic Poverty Agenda is to make a real difference in people’s lives so that they can have a decent standard of living. Education has always been the key in America to breaking the chains of poverty, and for historically disadvantaged low income citizens and immigrants it has been achieved through the public education system. Currently the system is segregated and many of our children are marked for prison before they have an opportunity to achieve any part of the American dream.
Resource information is available at several websites:
- NJEA proposal for educational reform - http://www.njea.org/news/2010-12-07/njea-unveils-reform-proposals
- Report on the Importance of Quality Education in NJ Public Schools - http://www.nj.gov/governor/news/reports/pdf/20100720_np_schools.pdf
- NJ Left Behind - http://njleftbehind.blogspot.com/
Submitted by: The Reverend Canon Dr. Sandye A. Wilson, Rector; Ms. Patrice M. Henderson, Lay Deputy, The Church of St. Andrew & Holy Communion; The Union of Black Episcopalians – Newark Chapter, Aubrey Thompson, President