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CA Parents Go “Back to School” for Their Kids

October 19, 2007

Oakland, CA - More than 100 parents from different Bay Area school districts are meeting this weekend to discuss why African American and Latino students are scoring lower than other races on the state's standardized tests. Michelle Matos, with the Parent Leadership Action Network (PLAN), says parents want to know why their kids aren't getting the education they need.

"We come from different backgrounds and there are real differences amongst African American and Latino culture and yet there are similarities in terms of the lack of access that kids have."

Statewide test scores released earlier this year showed the performance of African American and Latino students lagged behind white and Asian students, regardless of family income levels. At the forum, PLAN will be asking parents to sign postcards demanding State School Superintendent Jack O'Connell meet with the group by January 1, 2008. So far, O'Connell has declined to attend the forum.

Dawn Love has a 12-year-old daughter in the Hayward Unified School District. She plans to attend the weekend forum, and wishes more parents would get involved.

"My child's education is the future, and I want to make sure she gets an education like I did when I was growing up. She's in a generation now where this is really important."

The forum takes place Saturday morning at the First Unitarian Church of Oakland. To learn more, visit www.parentactionnet.org.

Deborah Smith/Craig Eicher, Public News Service - CA