California DFER Launches Today Under Steve Barr!

Blogs, Letters & Testimonials

July 28, 2014

California Democrats for Education Reform launches today under Steve Barr, founder of Green Dot Public Schools. Read more about their plan for building strong schools in the state below:

Building Strong Public School Systems by Working Together

California Democrats for Education Reform believes that the education of our children is a shared responsibility. As Democrats we need support for parents, teachers, and school leaders by promoting public policy that provides adequate resources, encourages collaboration, and joint accountability for the success of our public schools.

This statewide effort aims to promote progressive changes in support of strong school systems through political and community organizing. The organization is committed to listening to teachers, parents, and community leaders, in an effort to build consensus around common sense education reform.

Californians have the capacity to make our schools the best in the world. We have bright shining examples of great public schools that can be replicated in communities across the state – and we should scale up those best practices, but we lack the political consensus to make common sense reform a reality.

California Democrats for Education Reform believes that the vast majority of Democrats of all stripes want the same thing, but need to recommit to collaboration and partnership around school reform. To that end, the first phase of our organizing effort has THREE goals:

  1. Travel the state listening to teachers, parents, union leaders, community leaders, business leaders, and our elected leaders.
    • What do Californians think is working in their local schools?
    • What should be replicated in other schools across the state?
    • Where are our local schools coming up short?
    • What should we tell our State leaders about making our schools better?
  2. Assemble and challenge a workgroup of education experts, union leaders, reform leaders, parents, civic and business leaders, community leaders, and legislators to form recommendations for common sense education reforms that fit in 21st century schools.
  3. Build organizing capacity and political support around the need to work together to implement reform that improves our schools and builds solidarity in the Democratic Party around school reform.

The task ahead is creating the political consensus necessary to implement these reforms and best practices.

California Democrats for Education Reform launched in July of 2014. Steve Barr, Chair of California Democrats for Education Reform, is among the most accomplished school reformers in the country – best known for founding Green Dot Public Schools, one of the nation’s most successful charter school networks, while embracing teacher unionism. Partnering with Steve is Joe Boyd, a former union organizer with over two decades of experience and a talented team of community organizers and teachers.

For more information on upcoming events, visit the California Democrats for Education Reform Facebook page at