Concerned citizens at community forums and public meetings often wonder what they can do to help support public education and BH-BL. The answer: Complete one or more of the items on the Advocacy Checklist below. Then encourage your friends and neighbors to do the same!
Choose an issue affecting public education or BH-BL schools and learn about that issue. Attend a school board meeting, read local and statewide education publications, or review the “fact sheets” to get started.
Develop and hone a “laser talk”—a short, focused message—about the issue you chose. A “laser talk” should briefly identify a problem, present a solution, and issue a call to action. It is a very useful tool when you have only a minute or two of someone’s attention and you want to get a point across.
Send a letter or e-mail to local legislators. Call local legislators and schedule face-to-face meetings. Establish a relationship with the aides in legislators’ local offices. Attend and ask questions at town hall meetings hosted by local legislators. Invite a local legislator to be your guest at a BH-BL special event. Ask local legislators to agree to take a leadership role on your selected issue. Contact information for your elected representatives.
Write a letter to a newspaper editor and send your published letter to local legislators. Copy editorials or newspaper articles about your selected issue and send them to local legislators.
Host a discussion about your selected issue at a local business in your community. Organize a letter-writing campaign. Team up with a school leader to speak to a local community group. Participate in a community forum about your selected issue.
Use social media to spread the word about what you are advocating for: Update your Facebook or Twitter status with a key point from your “laser talk.” Share links to relevant news articles or information from the school district website. Invite people to participate in events in your community or online (virtual meetings) that are organized by you, the school district or another advocate. Follow legislators’ social media accounts and feel free to reach out to them using these communication tools.