Friday, March 20, 2009

Stand For Children

Child advocacy groups are pretty predictable creatures. They're all about childhood immunization, child health care, and early childhood education, right? Well, usually.

Not these folks.

Stand for Children is a national 501(c)(3) based in Portland, Oregon. It is a self-proclaimed "citizen voice for children" that torpedoes the traditional concept of what a child advocacy group is and can do. Stand "builds effective local and statewide networks of grassroots advocates" and focuses on "securing adequate funding for public schools and reforming education policies and practices to help children thrive academically, giving them the opportunities they need to become successful, productive citizens."

Stand has taken on an aggressive reform agenda focused on k-12 education and teacher quality, specifically. Stand was instrumental -- along with the Chalkboard Project -- in passing a visionary teacher mentoring law (HB2574) in the state of Oregon in 2007. (For more, read an article by Stand's Dana Hepper on page 7 of the New Teacher Center's Reflections newsletter.) They've achieved many other successes, too.

Stand has state affiliates in Massachusetts, Oregon, Tennessee and Washington state -- and soon in Colorado as well. It is led by Jonah Edelman, co-founder and executive director.

Check them out.

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