“Education is a human right with immense power to transform. On its foundation rest the cornerstones of freedom, democracy and sustainable human development.” – Kofi Annan
On Wednesday, May 8, a large number of teachers across Oregon will be walking out of classrooms in an organized action calling for the state to fully fund education. Here in the Portland area, a significant portion of those classrooms are served by The Right Brain Initiative, a program of RACC, as well as classrooms led by arts specialists funded in part by dollars from the Arts Tax, facilitated by RACC. While RACC is not a recipient of state educational funding, we do work with 11 school districts to help provide a holistic, quality education for over 40,000 students.
Via Right Brain and various arts education and community outreach efforts, RACC endeavors to shape a community that ensures a rich education in and through the arts for every K-12 student in the Portland metro area. Ultimately, this is a hope that extends beyond the borders of our programmatic reach as we believe in quality education for all, particularly in this state we are proud to serve. While we are committed to our ongoing work partnering with districts to increase student engagement and achievement, we are also practically aware that it requires money to achieve these goals.
We urge the state to seriously consider comprehensive funding for education that secures the future of Oregon students and thus the future of our state and our citizenry. Every single day our team and the wider RACC community sees our children full of energy, wisdom, potential, and hope. Given the opportunity, they will surely change the world. A significant, renewed investment in K-12 education in Oregon is an investment in these children, and in our collective future. RACC is proud to stand alongside our students, and we look to our legislators to join us in ensuring a rich, transformative educational experience for every child.
Oregon lawmakers are expected to vote on the Student Success Act in the next couple of weeks. If you believe that schools should be able to afford to give students small class sizes and programs, like arts and physical education, tell your lawmakers to invest in students.