Funding for school diversity planning: We helped NCSD with a national sign-on letter urging Congress to appropriate funds for the Fostering Diversity grants program (as also recommended in the President’s 2023 budget) along with other school diversity-related funding, including an increase in the Magnet Schools Assistance Program. The letter included an impressive range of signing organizations, demonstrating broad support for school integration. We were also pleased to see an internal Senate “Dear Colleague” letter calling for funding of the Fostering Diversity program, led by Senator Chris Murphy (CT) and joined by Senators Booker, Sanders, and Durbin. Also last week, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona underscored the Department’s support for school integration in testimony to the House Education and Labor Committee, and in response to questions from Committee Chair Bobby Scott.
PHAs, School Districts, and AFFH: We were invited to participate last month in the Council of Large Public Housing Authorities’ (CLPHA) annual “Housing Is” conference, which highlights the important connections between housing, education and health. Our panel illustrated ways that housing authorities can work with school districts and use school data to inform their Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing plans. I was joined on the panel by Andrew Greenlee from the University of Illinois-Champlain, Cashauna Hill from the Louisiana Fair Housing Action Center, and Natalie Spievack, a graduate student with the Center for Cities and Schools at UC-Berkeley. Our one-hour panel presentation is recorded here, and our powerpoint slides (without sound) are here.
Other news and resources
Big step forward for voucher families in Illinois and Tampa: The Illinois Governor has signed the statewide source of income (SOI) law passed by the General Assembly in April, protecting families with Housing Choice Vouchers (and other sources of legal income) from discrimination, making Illinois the 20th state to pass some form of SOI protection. See the new law here. Congratulations also to Tampa, which becomes the 8th jurisdiction in Florida to ban SOI discrimination.
The Redress Movement is hiring their first Executive Director. The Redress Movement, founded last year, “is an emerging racial justice organization that aims to organize racially and ethnically diverse local movements in communities throughout the U.S. It will help residents to build and wield collective power needed to redress residential segregation of their own and neighboring communities.” See the job posting here.