This parent has a concern about signing petitions and what it can lead to. I would recommend a word of caution also when signing petitions written by the League of Education Voters and Stand for Children. They can use those signatures to validate their organizations whose aim is the privatization of our schools in the state of Washington.


This post has been written by a parent who is a member of Parents Across America, Tacoma:

 Petitions created by StudentsFirst are turning up with alarming frequency on two progressive (and influential) petition sites, and Care2. What’s insidious is how innocuous the petitions seem at first glance, saying things like “support great teachers” or “get more funding for education.” Only a closer look at the fine print reveals that these petitions are sponsored by StudentsFirst–and that “funding” is all about merit pay and “supporting great teachers” is usually about being able to fire teachers. Unfortunately, many of us are in a hurry, presume that petitions on these sites reflect our values, and trustingly sign on in support. What I find particularly alarming is that Michelle Rhee is making use of these sites to continuously get her organization’s name out in front of progressives. And her relentless appearance there could lead people to associate her organization with a progressive stand on education issues.Of course, these sites should be extremely wary of any attempts at censorship. But what’s objectionable about the StudentsFirst petitions is the frequency with which they appear and the dis-ingenuousness of the wording. Also alarming is the fact that actually seems to be pushing StudentsFirst petitions: When you sign a petition, you’re immediately provided three more to sign, and frequently one of these offerings is from Michelle Rhee.

To read more and take action on this issue, check out the piece in Daily Kos by Aaron Krager, who was nearly duped into signing one of the StudentsFirst petitions, Why you should be against Michelle Rhee.

And here are links to petitions started by Aaron Krager on Care2 and respectively asking them to “stop tricking progressives into signing Michelle Rhee’s union-busting petitions”:

Felicity Devlin

Parents Across America, Tacoma