Those who follow the blog know I have a special interest in education issues. I also have a passion for getting ordinary people involved in their government. Combining these two interests of mine, I've gotten together with a couple of other moms and launched the Alpine Parent Society.
Our goal is to help facilitate community awareness of and involvement in the governance of Alpine School District. We aim to do it by organizing so that there is always a lay citizen in attendance at Board Meetings and Study Sessions.
ASD does a number of things well, but it has also fallen in line with most of the educational trends of the day, for better or worse. I believe that our District can step out of the long line of school districts following the exact same path to the exact same mediocre workforce-focused destination, and become an exception - a leader in family-honoring, principle-centered, knowledge-based education. I hope our organization can facilitate feedback to the School Board that will help them see a good way to do just that.
Check out the blog for the Alpine Parent Society, where we have our first two reports published. Even though we're calling it a "Parent Society," we welcome any and all residents of the Alpine School District, regardless of parental status. All you need to do to be part of the group is and commit to attend just one or two School Board meeting per year. Email me or post a comment on this blog or the APS blog to let me know you want to join the effort.
Another note I feel I should make is that right now, the group is heavy on those who share my political and policy philosophy, as I and my co-organizers reached out to friends to get it started. But we heartily welcome people of all perspectives and opinions to be part of this organization. One of the big challenges of a grassroots effort like this is that in welcoming everyone who's interested, you get all stripes and styles. The companion challenge is actually assembling a diverse group - when people disagree, they often don't want to be associated.
My goal with the APS is to get all kinds of people with all kinds of opinions to participate, get familiar with their elected officials and administrators, and report things as they see them, the good and the bad. It will help the District and Board get a feel for the variety of views held by their constituents, and hopefully help all of us constituents better understand how governance of the District works, as well as have patient respect for each others' views.
The next Board meeting and Study Session are on September 10. We'd love to have you there!