Meeting Minutes: Education Committee – June 15, 2017

In attendance:  Barbara Griffin, Ruthie Fritts, Sue Coomer, Pam Madaio, Mary Fleck

Review the Mission of SIAN

Background: The Sea Islands Action Network was formed by a group of citizens who were motivated to act in response to the election of Donald Trump. Now numbering over 200 members, we are inspired by Indivisible, a nationwide network of groups guided by the following principles:

  • We believe Trump’s agenda is racist, authoritarian, and corrupt, and it must be stopped.
  • We demand that our own local Members of Congress serve as our voice in Washington, DC.
  • We model inclusion, respect and fairness in all of our actions.

Mission:  To provide a forum where concerned citizens can work together to oppose the Trump agenda and influence our elected representatives.

Develop the mission for the Education Committee

  • What is our purpose?
  • What are the issues we want to pursue?
  • Which professional organizations are most relevant?

Based on our discussion we agreed on the following as our mission:

  • Keep current with news related to education including through professional organizations (such as AASA, NEA, Network for Public Education, etc.)
  • Identify actions of the Education Department and legislation related to education that require a call to action.
  • Interact with other SIAN committees on issue that overlap (such as Voting Rights regarding voter education and Health Care regarding Medicaid)
  • Engage in community education activities to inform others of the impact on education of decisions being made at the federal and state level.

Current issues of concern

  • Federal Budget for FY2018 (ESSA Title II and IV, IDEA, etc.)
  • Impact of Medicaid cuts on education and well-being of children
  • Vouchers and privatization
  • Federal school choice policy
  • Loan forgiveness

Next steps

  • Continue to share information and articles on relevant topics with each other (All)
  • Contact the SIAN Health Care Committee to collaborate with them about the impact on Medicaid (Mary and Pam)
  • Contact the SIAN Voting Rights Committee to offer to work with them on educating voters about how an election will impact education (Mary and Pam)
  • Contact the SCEA to learn about their position on issues (Ruthie)
  • Contact Dr. Postelwaite (Superintendent of Charleston Public Schools) to get her point of view on how the Trump agenda will impact her schools (Barbara)
  • Convene another meeting at the end of the summer, or sooner if circumstance warrants.

SIAN Contact: Mary Fleck
SIAN email:





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