New parent group: PPS Parent Union

The Parent’s Union is on its way. We will have our first meeting on May 13, 6:30 at 2941 NE Bryant St. Please invite anyone or any group you think wants to be a part of this landmark gathering. Let them know they get to be on the ground floor in the creation of this important and imperative group.

I will present my vision. I have talked to people who are already doing this in other cities and will be sitting at their feet for help. We need all your expert input. I am hopeful this will be a collaborative effort (sure of it). Some of you I have already asked to be the expert on certain issues since you already are.

Actions so far: We have been gathering parent’s and others’ stories of how they have been treated in our schools. Hope one or two will come to tell their story.

Groups who have committed to coming: Cascade Policy Institute, PIRC-Parental Information and Resource Center, Urban League, People Celebrating People, N-NE Black Coalition, Taskforce on the achievement gap social justice committee, Ainsworth UCC, PFLAG-Parents and Families of Lesbian and Gay Children, PTA, Special Ed. PTA, CPPS-Community and Parents for Public Schools, Community Education Partners and GrandParents raising GrandChildren.

Groups on my radar: Stand for Children (Will meet with Portland director and Stand CEO Jonah Edleman at the end of the month),
Foster Parents Association, home school Parents, homeless families, Tag parents (the program at PPS is going to be fragmented),
Special Education Groups, Head start Parents, charter school parents, Multnomah Family and community Services, DCJ, Rethinking Schools, NAYA, IRCO, CIO, APANO, Latino network, Center for Educational Excellence, Resolutions NW. We know there are many organizations, groups and parents. We will compose a list at the meeting.

For the last week I have attended 3 events that focused on Parent Involvement and collective collaboration. The time is right! We do have Parent Power!! It’s time to bring it out of the closet.

Sheila Warren is a community organizer and PPS grandparent.