“Our public schools remain America’s bedrock promise to guarantee an education to every child.” —Jeff Bryant
About Jeff Bryant
Jeff Bryant is chief correspondent and writing fellow for Our Schools. His award-winning commentary and reporting routinely appear in prominent online news outlets, and he frequently speaks about public education policy at national events and on local and national media outlets. He is also cofounder and director of the Education Opportunity Network, a strategy and messaging center for progressive education policy, and is managing editor and lead fellow of the Public School Shakedown, the education project of the Progressive magazine. The leadership he brings to communicating the value of public schools in the American experience is grounded in decades of work as a marketing and communications consultant for clients who ranged from prestigious nonprofit organizations to Fortune 500 companies.
About Ed Politics
About Our Schools
Americans have long believed in a guarantee to great public schools that would provide opportunities for individual advancement and promote the common good. Yet this simple, but powerful ideal has long battled with forces that seek to undermine public education by starving schools of resources, denying services to certain populations of students, undermining the wisdom and dignity of teachers, and subjecting the system to exploitation from those who wish to privatize and profit from a basic human right. Our Schools is an advocacy journalism project that reports from the frontlines of where this fight is currently white-hot and intensely relevant to the nation. Our Schools reports how students, parents, teachers, and community members are fighting back and often winning for the schools our children deserve, especially in underserved communities of color. In its reporting, Our Schools seeks out and amplifies authentic voices in the debate, spotlights agents and actors undermining public education, and elevates to national prominence stories of local school communities engaged in the struggle.
The goals of Our Schools are strongly political and aim to have maximum impact on legislation and elections at local, state, and national levels. By having an ongoing stream of reports picked up in a wide range of publications and circulated in social media outlets and pro-public education membership email lists and labor union newsletters, Our Schools employs the powers of advocacy journalism to:
- Rewrite the national narrative of public education as a “failed” national institution in need of “reform” imposed by top-down mandates.
- Expose actors and agencies with education policy agendas that have more to do with politics and profit-making than with genuine school improvement.
- Spur policymakers and politicians to enact measures that increase opportunity, equity, and access to high-quality education.
- Take down laws and policies that result in increased racial segregation of schools, harsh “no excuses” discipline practices that marginalize students of color, and the stifling of parent and teacher voices in the system.
- Awaken citizens and policy leaders to the dangers posed by charter schools, voucher programs, and other forms of school privatization.
- Change political discourse about education policy to embrace a progressive agenda for public schools as integral to racial, gender, and economic justice.
- Move the national education policy agenda toward a more positive vision of public schools as essential institutions for individual advancement and the common good.