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John Cheatham TSBA Stand Up for Public Education Tennessee School Boards Association’s campaign, Stand Up for Public Schools, focuses on the importance of keeping public education from becoming a tool of any single group or person.  The campaign seeks to enlist the support of community members from across the state of Tennessee  to ensure that the future of public education remains in the hands of the community, which it serves. Local school boards keep the public in charge of public schools. In any given county, city or special school district the local board of education is the “voice of the people.” To keep that voice strong we must continue to  TSBA Stand Up for Public Education Public Schools!


What is Stand Up for Public Schools?

TSBA Stand Up for Public Education School Boards Association along with the National School Boards Association launched a nationwide campaign, Stand Up for Public Schools, in February 2014 to increase awareness of the importance of public schools. Historically, communities have supported local, lay school boards to make certain that local schools serve the community effectively and equally.

The campaign focus is on maintaining the collective belief that public education should not be allowed to become a tool of any single group or person and that education exists to serve all people equally. Support for a strong system of public education is crucial. It is the backbone of our democracy and has made our nation a leader in the world.

Tennessee’s Constitution states:  “The General Assembly shall provide for the maintenance, support and eligibility standards of a system of free public schools.”  This means:

  • A tuition-free education for all students.
  • The promise of equal educational opportunities no matter race, religion or ability.
  • A commitment to high standards and high expectations for all students.
  • A system of governance that ensures public accountability.
  • A benefit to society by teaching democratic principles and common values.

“Only the public schools are legally required to accept and retain all students, no matter their race, no matter their religion, no matter their educational attainment, social class, family income, special needs, or personal characteristics. Only the public schools must guarantee that—within a legally enforceable range— the amount spent on each student will be equal from school to school within communities and across the state where those students reside.”
– Center for Public Education

Because education is such a determining factor in the future of individuals, governments, businesses and organizations of all kinds, its control has never been a simple matter.

 Why Are Local Public Schools Necessary?

  • “Public schools broke the link between accidents of birth and access to education that determined the social order for centuries. Public schools unleashed the creative intelligence of tens of millions of children both privileged and disenfranchised,” said speaker and public education advocate Jamie Vollmer. ” America is the first country on the planet to aggressively pursue publicly funded, equal educational opportunities for all and the return on our investment has been glorious”
  • “Creativity and innovation have stimulated a record of success, not burdensome government regulations, paperwork and mandates,” said NSBA Executive Director, Thomas Gentzel. “Despite the vastly different environment in which the education system now operates, a lesson learned nearly two centuries ago still applies: Schools are community assets, and their leadership is best entrusted to elected school boards who are directly accountable to the people they serve.”

 Why Are Local School Boards Necessary?

  • Voters elect their fellow citizens to serve on school boards and those boards make basic policy decisions about the schools’ direction and costs. Additionally, Tennessee law requires that those decisions must be made in open public meetings that give individual citizens an opportunity to participate.
  • School boards allow representatives of the community to become well-informed and govern the schools in the best interest of the community.
  • Through the operation of the local board of education, the control of education is kept close to the people of the community.  Local school boards keep the public schools in the possession of the public.
  • In any given county, city or special school district the local board is the “voice of the people.”

What Can You Do?

The main goal of the Stand Up for Public Schools campaign is to provide local boards of education and community members with the tools and resources needed to begin a dialogue about keeping the control of public education within the local community. The campaign seeks to enlist the support of all citizens from across this great state to ensure that the future of public education remains in the hands of the community, which it serves.These resources can be found by visiting the “Take Action” tab on the standupfortnpublicschools.net website.

About TSBA

The Tennessee School Boards Association, a statewide, nonprofit organization, is a federation of the state’s local school boards. The mission of the Tennessee School Boards Association is to assist school boards in effectively governing school districts. Through the years, TSBA has helped school boards and their members reach their highest potential through association programs, meetings and services. TSBA also provides school board members a collective voice in matters of legislation and public education concerns. To learn more about TSBA,

National Campaign

Why Stand Up For Public Education?

From NSBA President David A. Pickler:

Well-funded and well-organized critics are undermining public schools and working to eliminate school board governance as we know it. But the conversation is beginning to change – and YOU are part of this shift. In local communities across America, public schools are the ‘great equalizer’ able to empower every child to fulfill his or her potential, regardless of race, gender, socioeconomic circumstance, or religious affiliation. Many Americans today understand the myths of ‘choice’ and are choosing public education.

If you are prepared to stand up for public education, join our 90,000 school board leaders, 13,500 public school districts, 50 million public school children, and more than 100 million public education family members to leverage the power and significance of our collective voice. Supporting access to a world-class public education makes sense for our nation’s future: When you stand up for public schools, you ensure that every child in America – regardless of ZIP code – gains the chance of college and career opportunity. 

Who Should Stand Up For Public Schools?

The answer is simple: YOU!

Motivated people from all walks of life should support public education. Whether you are a parent, a political leader, a small business owner, a local or state decision maker, or a member of your community who believes in the American dream, when you take a stand for America’s public schools you help every child achieve world-class standards and a brighter future.


Tennessee School Boards Association’s About

Stand Up 4 Public Schools

National School Boards Association

Gatesville ISD standing up!#tasbsli #standupforpubliceducation

A photo posted by Amy Hays (@aggie94_amy) on