Thanks very much to all of you who supported and advocated for Arizona’s public community schools and the one million students they serve! We can be thankful for the success we had this year — much of it do to the grassroots efforts of Save Our Schools AZ, but we know we can’t let our guard down. If we are to get our students fully funded classrooms, our teachers a living wage, and our taxpayers what they are paying for…we must remain vigilant and ensure we stand up both daily, and at the ballot box in November, to ensure our voices are heard and our priorities are respected!
I would really appreciate your reading the rest of this post to learn about an easy way you can “stand up” for our public schools on January 7th at 9am. You don’t even have to get out of your fuzzy slippers, leave your house or open your wallet. All you have to do is help spread the word. Please read on to learn more.
Last spring I was invited out east to participate in a video shoot for the Network for Public Education (NPE). I was part of a group of speakers—parents, students, educators, school board members—who came from all over the country to speak on topics of import to the health of public education and the children we serve: full funding, “accountability,” charters, vouchers, high-stakes testing, teacher deprofessionalization, school closures, and more. The series 8 Powerful Voices in Defense of Public Education emerged from that shoot.
I’m writing to you now because Michael Elliot and Kemala Karmen, the team who created the video for Network for Public Education, asked if I could pass along the following to my friends and allies. PLEASE read their email below to learn how you can help in their nationwide effort to raise awareness and fight back.
Please note I did not include the link to the video yet because we don’t want it to go out until Jan 7th. If you are willing to help, comment on this post or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll be back in touch as we get closer to that date.
Thanks VERY much,
Hello friends of Linda Lyon,
NPE has started to release the videos in the series 8 Powerful Voices in Defense of Public Education, one at a time, via social media. Each features one speaker and is 2-3 minutes long. The first out of the gate was this spot featuring Diane Ravitch. NPE hoped it would get 100,000 views; it got over 800,000 and reached into nearly a million more Facebook feeds. We followed that withthis video of Texas superintendent John Kuhn speaking on the topic of inequity in school funding. To our great pleasure, it too went viral.
Linda’s spot will be the next to go live, and to spread her message that our public schools should not be parceled out to privatizers, we need it to reach a wide audience too.
But we’ll let you in on a secret.
As much as we’d like to say that the videos have blown up just on the merits of our filmmaking and the speakers’ good looks, the truth is that we’ve been pushing them to social media strategically. That is, we have been contacting the already existing allies of each speaker as a video comes out and asking them to be part of this project of getting the ideas out into the wider world. We’re writing now because we’re hoping YOU will join that project and commit to sharing Linda’s video with your networks.
The video is scheduled for release at 9 AM on Sunday January 7, the day after the Save Our Schools AZ rally (it would be great if someone could mention the video at the rally and invite folks in attendance to help push it!), and the day immediately before the opening of the AZ state legislative session. We will make it easy for you to share effectively by providing you with a Social Media Guide containing specific instructions, suggested Tweets and FB copy, etc.
Please reply to this email to let us know (via Linda) that we can count on you and we will then make sure you get the guide. For the previous videos in the series, we did one unified national release. Because the events around vouchers are so timely in AZ, however, we are going to experiment with Linda’s video and do an AZ-specific release on the 7th.
We just learned (thanks to a Facebook post on Save Our Schools AZ!) that a Koch Bros.-affiliated group is going to be spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on a pro-voucher TV campaign. Let’s get out in front of them with this video! We don’t have a penny to spend on ad buys, but if we use our people power on social media, we can get a LOT of eyeballs.