Jonathan Cetel is the founding executive director of PennCAN. He lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

All progress begins with a single step. Our work at PennCAN is no exception.

Last winter, we stepped forward to call for change when we saw Pennsylvania kids losing too many great educators through seniority-based layoffs. Our goal: keep effective teachers in the classroom, even when school districts face tough financial times.

After months of drafting legislation, building a coalition and identifying sponsors in the House and Senate, we took another big step today when Rep. Tim Krieger and Rep. Vanessa Brown introduced the “Protecting Excellent Teachers Act”—a bill that would ensure personnel decisions are based on a teacher’s performance, not simply the length of time a teacher has been in the classroom.

The next step is seeing this bill through passage—and I’d love for you to take that step with us by investing in our work. Please donate $5, $10, $15 or $25 today to help us protect great teachers.

At a press conference, I joined elected officials, a business leader and a laid-off teacher to say: “We believe that with the right policies, dramatic change is possible. We aim to remove the barriers holding schools back so that the herculean task of building an achievement-gap busting school can become just a little easier.”

In the coming months, PennCAN will work to remove those barriers by producing original research on rewarding teachers, spreading the word about what’s at stake and rallying concerned citizens throughout Pennsylvania to speak up on behalf of educators and kids.

But we can’t do it without you. Please help us keep the momentum to protect great teachers by donating to our campaign today.


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