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Spotlight Nonprofit: Working towards teaching change to an old school system

LatinaLista — Out of all the school supplies a child needs to be ready for the school year, the backpack is one of the most essential. Unfortunately, it can also be the most costly, not counting calculators or uniforms. Many nonprofits around the country are giving away backpacks to students whose families can’t afford them.

One such nonprofit in New Jersey, Better Education for Kids (B4K), is handing out over 30,000 backpacks — and they’re not stopping there. In each backpack, children will find six pencils, two notebooks and folders, and one glue stick, pencil sharpener and eraser. Just the basics to get started on the right foot this school year.

Yet, B4K knows that it takes more than a backpack with a few supplies in it to ensure children get a good education. The nonprofit is on a mission to ensure that children in New Jersey get that good education by demanding reform of the educational system that align with the group’s core principles.

B4k, an arm of the education reform advocacy group Better Education Institute, is working towards change that is both long overdue and long expected. Among the goals the group wants to accomplish are:

  • Reward and Support Excellence in the Teaching Profession with Improved Evaluations and Merit Pay
  • Grant Tenure Based on Performance and End LIFO (Last In First Out)
  • Empower Parents to Demand Excellence
  • Empower Principals and Hold Them Accountable for Excellence in their Schools
  • Expand Opportunities for Non-traditional Teaching and Principal Candidates
  • Support Expanding Options for Kids in Chronically Underperforming Schools
  • Hold School Board Elections in November Along with the General Election

Though education reform isn’t as high on the list of issues that are being addressed by the presidential candidates, it’s still an issue that needs immediate attention and one which local organizations realize that increasingly it’s up to them to do something to change the educational outcomes for their state’s future breadwinners.

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