My involvement with C3S began a year ago as a parent advocate. Through active participation at my child’s school, I learned about the inequities between charter and district schools in New York. I also learned about the rampant misinformation being spread about charter schools. These two factors lit a fire in me, urging me to volunteer my time to help battle the discrimination against independent charter schools. My hope is that all independent charter schools will be afforded the resources and support to make real changes in how we approach public education so that they can work towards innovation, finding new ways to serve the often marginalized populations in our city, and become valuable community partners. My daughter’s school achieves this; it’s where I want her to be, and I am continually glad I had that choice.
My activism in the fight for equity and against harmful charter schools myths has lead to a role at C3S engaging parents from schools across the city. I’m lucky enough to get a first-hand look at the rich variety of independent charter school models in NYC that consistently serve students who need the most support. I speak to the parents at these schools and encourage them to advocate for their children and become active community members, giving them the tools to participate in the democratic process locally and beyond. As charter school parents, we have so much in common, despite our different backgrounds and the different neighborhoods we live in. We all chose to be a part of this movement. We made a choice to advocate for our children and be involved in their schooling. I’m fortunate to have the opportunity to connect with them. This is why I value C3S and the work we’re doing.
by Amanda Lefer, Family and Community Outreach Associate at C3S