With only one in 10 low-income students graduating from college in this country, it is clear that we are not meeting our obligation as a society, and as a nation, to provide equal opportunities for all children. Achievement First has always understood that it is not enough to simply run great schools for the more than 8,100 students we serve. Through advocacy efforts and partnerships, we are committed to more broadly influencing the education landscape in our districts and communities, thereby improving the educational opportunities available for all children.
In Connecticut, we are focused on securing equitable funding for public charter schools, which currently receive approximately 80 percent of the public funding allotted to traditional public schools. We are also partnering with our districts—New Haven, Hartford and Bridgeport—as well as other local organizations, to share knowledge to help close Connecticut’s achievement gap, the largest achievement gap in the nation between low-income and affluent students.
In New York City, where Achievement First schools received an average of more than eight lottery enrollment forms for each available seat, we are committed to providing Brooklyn families with more excellent public school options. As the mayoral race approaches, Achievement First parents, along with other like-minded community leaders and organizations, are working together to advocate for policies that will support high-performing public schools.
In Rhode Island, we are advocating for policies that will grant public charter schools the freedom and autonomy they need to effectively drive student achievement. We are also seeking more equitable reimbursement policies for construction and renovation of public school buildings.