Salem – Since launching in January 2019, Oregonians for Student Success has helped students, parents, school board members, and education advocates connect with their legislators over 11,000 times, and in a variety of ways. The campaign, founded by the Oregon School Boards Association, has worked to shorten the distance between Oregonians and their lawmakers, making it easier for constituents to connect with their elected leaders in the Legislature.
By providing tools for more accessible and efficient engagement, Oregonians for Student Success has generated over 10,700 digital contacts between constituents and their legislators through May 1, including emails urging a “yes” vote and testimony submitted in support of The Student Success Act. Hearing from constituents has a real impact on legislators: over 500 advocates submitted testimony in support of the Act to the Joint Committee on Student Success, which passed the bill out of committee on April 29, and over 6,000 emails were directed at the Oregon House, which passed the Student Success Act on May 1.
In addition to online engagement, Oregonians for Student Success hosted 10 Education Funding Town Halls, allowing advocates to connect with their legislators right in their community, and interact with others fighting for education funding. By bringing advocates together and inviting legislators to these events at schools and education districts around the state, Oregonians for Student Success reached into the community to engage advocates in their neighborhoods.
Over the course of six weeks toward the beginning of the 2019 Legislative Session, Oregonians for Student Success hosted six advocacy days, where over 100 school board members, school administrators, teachers, parents, and students participated in more than 80 meetings with legislators. Many took time off work, or off of school, to travel to Salem and make sure legislators heard loud and clear that we can’t delay funding our schools any longer. Attendees spoke with legislators, including those on the Joint Committee for Student Success, and shared their experiences and personal stories in classrooms, as parents, or as decision-makers when it came to budget cuts. These stories had an impact and were critical to shaping and informing the final version of the Student Success Act.
Built on a desire to connect Oregonians concerned about schools and students with their lawmakers, and ensure their engagement throughout the legislative process, Oregonians for Student Success is driving and empowering advocates to take meaningful action. After nearly 30 years, Oregon is poised to pass landmark legislation for school funding — and there are thousands of tireless advocates who made their voices heard so the Student Success Act could become a reality. Thank you!