A week after the fifth Annual PublicSchoolOptions.org Family Reunion we are still reflecting on the conversations and ideas that were exchanged between attendees for the largest event in our organization's history. With nearly 90 parent advocates in attendance at this year's event, we are proud of how much our organization has grown in five short years. Thanks to our parent advocates from across the country, school options is increasingly a phrase on the tip of many decision makers' tongues.
A recent blog post on Lori's LOLz Love of Learning, a Colorado-based blog devoted to raising awareness for school options, makes one think about the birth of PublicSchoolOptions.org and where we are today. Five years ago a few parent leaders got together to discuss the need for a national, unified voice, and here we are today, uniting voices from coast-to-coast, ensuring all students are given an equal shot at an education that works.
One aspect that was unique to this year's Family Reunion was the inclusion of past and present online school students. One of the students in attendance was Rachel S., the author of the Lori's LOLz Love of Learning blog post.
Rachel graduated from Colorado Virtual Academy this year and has been telling her story in the halls of the Colorado statehouse for years. This was the first time Rachel had been invited to Family Reunion, and from her post, she found it worth her while! "No matter the age of the coalitions the participants represented, or the amount of times the participants had attended the reunion, I don't believe any were disappointed with the passion and purpose of this reunion."
Giving students like Rachel a soapbox to tell their stories - how online learning has helped them grow into better students and/or achieve their goals - is just one way PublicSchoolOptions.org is working to get the message out about the benefits of school choice. Who can better attest to the quality of an online education than a student who has experienced it first-hand?
We are extremely excited to see students getting involved in promoting their schools, and we hope to hear more student stories at next year's Family Reunion!