Faith-based community organization may seek to boycott schools

Posted: August 15, 2013

IF STATE AND CITY political leaders aren't able to secure $180 million in funding for the School District of Philadelphia, then a group of local congregations may seek to boycott schools when they open Sept. 9, the coalition announced earlier this week.

POWER, Philadelphians Organized to Witness, Empower & Rebuild, a faith-based community organization representing 41 congregations, is calling on the state and city to provide a "safe and quality environment on the first day of school," said a spokesman for the group, Bishop Dwayne Royster.

"We know Superintendent Hite originally requested $180 million in funding, but that amount has dwindled to $50 million, which he says he can open the schools with, but barely," said Royster, a pastor with the Living Water United Church of Christ.

The group is calling for $180 million to be given to the district "immediately with no strings attached" as well as an equitable funding formula for the state so that all children have access to quality education, he said.

It would be "irresponsible" to send a child to a school that was unsafe and lacked quality, he said. POWER will make its decision on a possible boycott by Friday, which also is the district's deadline to determine whether it will open schools on time.


On Twitter: @ReginaMedina

Online: ph.ly/DNEducation

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