We need to address immediate needs and to right historical wrongs by Mallory Fix Lopez

Posted on April 2, 2020
Categories: Insights with the Board

This crisis is a wake-up call. We should be outraged that our most vulnerable communities and children are at most risk as a result of the coronavirus crisis and school closures, and that the achievement gap will likely widen during this time.

We should be more outraged because, despite the new crisis, this is not a new story. It is a very familiar story – decades of underfunding of our cities and our public education system negatively impacting our children.

And we should all be outraged because if you live in Philadelphia, public education impacts your life.

I thank our educators and our District for doing a lot with a little over the past several unprecedented weeks. Moving forward, I am hoping all Philadelphians can stand together and do even more.

Here’s my commitment during this incredibly difficult time: that the Board and District communicate as effectively as possible. That we are honest, acknowledge mistakes, and do what we can to build trust. That the Board supports the District in every way possible, while holding it accountable for serving our children and families.

At the same time, our city must move forward in a way that shows we are all outraged, that we are all impacted, and that we are all doing everything possible for justice for our children.

We need to both address the immediate needs of the moment and to right historical wrongs like underfunding of our children and our schools – it is the only way we will really get to the other side of this crisis, and it is the only way to do right by our children.