Letters to lawmakers

Reality must trump rhetoric when it comes to our schools

An Open Letter to Mr. Albert Berriz and his campaign committee, the Citizens for a Responsible Washtenaw

“…I have called publicly on my fellow members of the Ann Arbor community to get involved in the difficult choices that face our schools, and to educate ourselves about what our schools do and why. But I do not believe that we will find magical ways to reduce spending without significantly reducing the services offered by our schools. This is the very choice which the Washtenaw Schools Millage was designed to avoid. But now that we must come face to face with these hard choices, I call upon you, your company and your campaign committee to stop promoting wishful thinking and start facing up to the painful decisions which face our schools and our community.”

Lawmakers respond: Gov. Jennifer Granholm

Also in response to our original letter about school funding, Gov. Granholm sent this call to action to everyone who supports our efforts (a PDF version of the original letter is attached below).

April 6, 2007

Ann Arbor Parents For Schools
Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Dear Ann Arbor Parents for Schools members:

Thank you for sharing your thoughts regarding funding for Ann Arbor Public Schools. I have made it clear that I do not intend to slash school funding in Michigan this year and that I believe we should increase our investment in K-12 schools to keep Michigan competitive.

Lawmakers respond: Rep. Rebekah Warren (D-Ann Arbor)

In response to our original letter about school funding, Rep. Rebekah Warren (who represents most of Ann Arbor in the state House) sent the following thoughtful reply (a PDF of her original letter is attached below).

March 27, 2007

Mr. Steven J. Norton
Ann Arbor Parents for Schools
Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Dear Mr. Norton,

Thank you for sending along this additional information about the Aim Arbor Parents for Schools group and giving me an opportunity to read your introductory letter. It was a pleasure to meet you the other night at the Town Hall meeting and to hear about this absolutely crucial undertaking.

Speak out now to stop late cuts this year!

We sent our letter to Chmn. Cushingberry, other members of the House Appropriations Committee, Reps. Ebli (Monroe) and Warren (Ann Arbor), and Sens. Brater and Richardville, on April 5th. A copy of the final letter in PDF form is attached to the posting. Read our letter on the Michigan Parents for Schools site:

Our letter to the Governor and Legislature

Below is the letter we sent to Governor Granholm and to our local representatives, Senator Liz Brater and Representative Rebekah Warren, on 16 March. If you would like to get involved and participate in our efforts, please send us a message at aaparentsforschools@gmail.com or use the “Join our email list” link to receive group news and web site updates. Or, feel free to borrow the letter and use it as a framework for your own letter to your elected representatives. Thanks!