Community Institute for Education - Stories


Does the issue of education reform seem so overwhelming that you don’t know where to start?

That’s how one participant felt as they started their journey with CPJ’s newly-launched Community Institute for Education in Pittsburgh, PA earlier this month. 

The Institute draws together a group of people from all walks of life, taking what often seem like overwhelming obstacles in education and figures out how we, in our various roles and responsibilities, can shape policy towards a more just education system for everyone.   

Wondering how this happens? 

I invite you to follow this group’s journey over the next few months as one of the participants, Jennifer Pelling, chronicles our learning and engagement through stories like the one below.



"The process of getting to know another human being has two levels--surface and story--and first impressions take less than 30 seconds to form."

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"East Ramapo, New York is a town with an education battle and a story that seems more fit for cable television than for teachers and classrooms."

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"Later, my answer seemed obvious, but it wasn’t the same as my gut response. The question was so important that our facilitator wrote it on the board: Who is primarily responsible for a child’s education?"

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" If you ask my first-grader to recite the pledge of allegiance, there will be something in the middle about a republic for-wishes-she-stands, a series of syllables approximating the word ‘indivisible,’ and seating directions as a grand finale."

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"Political. What a waste of time. [...] And then, some four hours later, a school principal with a story challenged both my definition and my cynicism."

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"And that was how I came to be at the May meeting followed by pizza and wings, wondering why we were even there."

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