From Derrell Bradford <[email protected]>
Subject Believing in Better Bears Fruit
Date June 16, 2021 11:29 AM
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A new leader for DelawareCAN. Major victories across the 50CAN network.

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Dear John,

A year on from one of the most difficult summers in modern memory there are green chutes of renewal. The 50CAN network has worked to navigate the pandemic, with new policy and out-of-the-box advocacy, to make sure that the effects of disrupted learning can be remedied for the country’s students. None of us knew that WiFi on wheels in Hawaii or Zoom meetings with state legislators and school board members in Colorado would create an environment where families and communities came together to ensure children were educated. But we believed something better was possible, and indeed it was.

This summer I am hopeful for many reasons, but especially for three promising pieces of news that build upon the momentum of the last year.

A New Leader for the First State

I want to introduce you all to the newest member of the 50CAN family, Britney Mumford, who has just assumed the role of Executive Director of DelawareCAN.

If there is one lesson that we’ve learned above all others from the pandemic, it’s that local communities have the power to create their own solutions and make change through their own grassroots momentum. As a native Delawarean who is a veteran of political campaigns and skilled at a variety of grassroots organizing tactics, Britney is the perfect leader for this moment.

I am excited to see her work to improve the educational experience of every Delaware student in the coming months. You can learn more about Britney in her own words here ([link removed]) .

It Always Seems Impossible Until it’s Done

Longtime watchers of the Nutmeg State know that overhauling key aspects of Connecticut’s school funding formula--with its 11 different approaches based not on student need but on the kind of school a student attends--has been an elusive, near impossible goal over the past twenty years.

At least it was, until last week, with the legislative session seeing a historic set of changes that put students on a fairer footing regardless of the kind of public school they attend, including charters. Subira Gordon, ConnCAN’s executive director, sat down with our EVP Jonathan Nikkila to discuss her work ([link removed]) and that of her coalition partners on this incredibly important policy victory.

[link removed]
50CAN Executive Vice President Jonathan Nikkila interviews ConnCAN Executive Director Subira Gordon

A Clear View for Colorado Families

With billions of dollars coming from Washington, D.C. to states for education as a result of the pandemic, transparency is a top priority. At 50CAN we believe a parent’s right to know how this money is being spent on their child is fundamental.

And Transform Education Now (TEN) is leading on this important issue, helping to enact HB1259 ([link removed]) which ensures that school district plans to spend this money are available to the public. As part of a broad coalition that included partners like DFER Colorado, they also helped pass HB1234 ([link removed]) , which allocates $5 million for tutoring efforts across the state.

These are substantial efforts to combat more than a year’s worth of disrupted learning and we hope they lay the groundwork for future policies that help more families match with the education that best works for them.

At 50CAN we believe in better because our campaigns, and the families and communities with which they partner, have shown us they have the knowledge, determination, and spirit necessary to improve education so every child can become the best version of themselves. For that reason I look forward to summer, and all that it can make possible for the country’s children.


Derrell Bradford
President of 50CAN

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