Candidates Give No Airtime to #1 Issue Among Voters
[Boston, October 8, 2021] We — the members of ACT Boston — call on our two mayoral finalists, City Councilors Michelle Wu and Annissa Essaibi-George, to engage in a live public discussion of their plans and priorities for improving Boston’s deeply inequitable public education system. Recently, our coalition and its 19 member organizations — which represent thousands of students, families, and educators — were disappointed to learn that no public forums dedicated to discussing preK-12 education in our city prior to the election have been planned.
Education was ranked as the #1 issue on mayoral voters’ minds in the most recent public poll. The Mayor will oversee a $1.3 billion annual education budget — a third of the city’s budget — as well as the spending of an additional $430 million in federal education recovery funding over her term. More than 50,000 school-age children attend Boston Public Schools, and there are tens of thousands of additional students in Boston currently enrolled in public charter schools, METCO, or private schools, and early education outside BPS. These children and their families and caregivers deserve to hear more details from these candidates on how Boston’s next mayor will make education a priority.
It is urgent that Boston’s next mayor is willing to engage in an in-depth public discussion of preK-12 education issues in our city. Stakeholders and voters need to be able to ask questions about their vision, plans, and priorities before the November election. This issue cannot be ignored.
We implore both candidates to participate in a public forum that our coalition will co-sponsor prior to the November 2nd election. It would be done in partnership with a major media partner and would be live-streamed so Boston families, students, and voters can hear where each candidate stands on this critical issue.
About ACT Boston:
All Children Thrive (ACT Boston) is a non-partisan coalition of non-profit and community-based organizations raising awareness of educational inequities in Boston and holding city leadership accountable for equitable opportunities and outcomes for all of Boston’s children. Learn more at actboston.org.
Our member organizations include: Boston Opportunity Agenda, Boston Plan for Excellence, Boston Schools Fund, Boston SpEdPAC, East Boston Social Centers, EdNavigator, EdVestors, Generation Citizen, Hyde Square Task Force, Latinos for Education, OneGoal, SchoolFacts Boston, Smart Start BPS, The Education Trust, The Steppingstone Foundation, The Teachers’ Lounge, Union Capital Boston, United Way of Massachusetts Bay & Merrimack Valley, and West End House.
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- The Boston Globe, 10/8/21: Why won’t Wu and Essaibi George face off on public education?