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Rally for Public Education is Sunday at Kelly-Strayhorn in East Liberty

Gov. Tom Corbett will speak Tuesday about his proposed budget. Educational policy center offers phone conference Wednesday.

There are two efforts under way this week regarding public education—one to discuss and the other to protest the proposed education budget that Gov. Tom Corbett will announce during his annual budget address Tuesday (today) in the state House Chamber, beginning at 11:30 a.m.

The first of those efforts is a telephone conference call being held by the Education Policy and Leadership Center in Harrisburg to discuss the budget issues on Wednesday, Feb. 6, at 11 a.m. Wednesday.

The second is the Rally for Public Education, set for 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10, at the Kelly Strayhorn Theater, 5941 Penn Ave., East Liberty. The rally is organized by Yinzercation, the Pittsburgh-area grassroots movement of volunteer parents, students, teachers and community members fighting for public schools.

Budget Conference Call

The Education Policy and Leadership Center will host a statewide conference call for members of the PA Education Advocacy Network, the PA School Funding Campaign, the PA Arts Education Network and others to discuss the Pennsylvania education budget proposed by Corbett.

Ron Cowell, president of the independent, non-partisan and not-for-profit organization based in Harrisburg, was formerly the state representative for the 34th District, which included Forest Hills, Edgewood, Wilkins, Wilkinsburg, Chalfant, Churchill and parts of Swissvale and Swisshelm Park.

Cowell served as a member of the state House of Representatives for 24 years until 1998. While in the Legislature, he served as the majority or minority chair of the House Committee on Education for 12 years. He also served for 12 years as a member of the Pennsylvania State Board of Education and for 20 years as a board member of the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA).

To participate in this conference, call toll-free 1-866-843-8301. The pass code (conference number) is 5920751287.

Rally for Public Education

Hundreds of volunteer parents, students, teachers and concerned community members in the grassroots movement for public schools will converge at the Rally for Public Education on Sunday at 3 p.m. in East Liberty.

Participants will respond to Corbett's new budget proposal and issue a call to action to support public schools. The rally will feature Anne Feeney, Vanessa German, the Squirrel Hillbillies, a community conversation with Dr. Tim Slekar (head of the education department at Penn State Altoona) and a special free showing of the new pro-public education documentary, "Brooklyn Castle," under special arrangement with the producers.

To see details about the rally, see the attached PDF or click here. For those who can't attend, Yinzercation also has a SignOn.org petition that calls adequate, equitable and sustainable public education funding "so that all the children of Pennsylvania, not just the rich or privileged, receive the same high quality education."

What do you think of Gov. Corbett's proposal? Do you plan to attend either of the above events. Let us know in the comments section.

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