The local education reform group Coalition for Common Sense in Education, or CCSE, has modified its name to reflect its renewed purpose in the battle to more justifiably reform our foundering public education system. The Coalition for Justice in Education (CJE) believes the new moniker more closely echoes the efforts of other local organizations in promoting the equitable design and distribution of resources that impact ‘a variety of school-related areas,’ according to a statement by CJE Chairperson, Dan Drmacich. According to Mr. Drmacich, the name change ‘more symbolically and effectively communicates our emphasis on fairness & equity for all students.’ Additionally, Drmacich pronounces that such a change is representative of the group’s more intensive focus on matters pertaining to the ‘U.S. Constitution, common cultural values and research.’
The CJE was one of several local organizations that produced a community-wide education summit, held Friday and Saturday, March 11 and 12, at the Rochester Plaza Hotel. Approximately 250 people reportedly attended the summit, which occupied a significant portion of the second floor of the complex, with seminars that were facilitated by both locally and nationally recognized education authorities. These discussion groups provided opportunities for community members of all stripes to both deliberate and expand on what are considered the hallmarks, or working principles, that were originally developed by the Community Education Task Force (CETF), which was another sponsor of the summit. Eight concurrent seminars were conducted during both the morning and afternoon sessions, both deliberating and expanding on what are also considered the ‘Eight Principles for Change.’ Former City of Rochester Mayor Bill Johnson, who is vying to once again be the city’s mayor, was one of the keynote speakers for the kickoff session on Friday evening.
For additional information regarding the CJE, please refer to its Facebook page. The group plans to launch its own website within the next month. Drmacich has also conveyed that a series of upcoming forums are being sponsored by the CJE, including a talk-back community event involving Senators Joe Robach and George Maziarz, who serve on the State Senate Education Committee.
All CJE meetings are held at the Rochester City School District’s School Without Walls, with the next scheduled gathering set for Wednesday, April 6, at 4pm.
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