Donate Videos Media Requests About Us Contact Us Home Livestream YouTube Instagram Twitter Facebook LogoHome Search

News, Press, and Recommended Reading

August 26, 2013

We Encourage “the Village” to Head Back to School This Week to Ensure Students’ Success



Rev Jesse Jackson Sr. PUSH for Excellence and Rainbow PUSH Coalition Encourage “the Village” to Head Back to School

This Week to Ensure Students’ Success Chicago, IL (August 26, 2013)

Chicago, IL (August 26, 2013) –Today is the first day of school for most public school students across the US. We know that it takes a village to raise and educate a child. Therefore, the village must prepare to take our children back to school this week.  School attendance is important. Truancy leads to delinquency. Delinquent children feed the cradle to the prison pipeline. 

Children from poor families do worse than kids from middle-class and wealthy families; children do better if their mother has a college degree; and, overall, children of all ethnicities and races do better in schools with less than 25 percent of the student population coming from low-income families.

The percentage of children ages 6 to 18 whose parents’ highest level of educational attainment was less than high school completion helps tell the achievement gap story. The average percentage was 11 percent for males and females, but 31 percent of Hispanic children had parents who had not completed high school, 11 percent of black kids, 10 percent of Asian males and 9 percent of Asian females.

Twenty-two percent of the school-age population, or 11.8 million children 5 to 17, spoke a language other than English at home; 2.7 million spoke English with difficulty. The breakdown: 16 percent for Hispanics, 16 percent for Asians, 7 percent for Native Alaskans, 5 percent for Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders; 2 percent for American Indians, and 1 percent for black students and 1 percent for white pupils.


It is important that parents take their children to school the first week of school. Students who miss school the first week of school cause problems for the school and for themselves. It is important that every child is prepared and starts school on time. Most school budgets are based on attendance the first two months of the new school year. Every day a student is absent, the school district loses revenue and the student loses an investment in education. We must take our children back to school as a community. Parents who can should take their children to school every day this week. Politicians and ministers should meet with the schools in their legislative districts the first week of school. Ministers are urged to visit the schools close to their churches this week and welcome the students back.


The safest route to school should include a parent and a child walking together. We urge every parent, grandparent, and guardian to make sure that every child goes to school this week. PUSH For Excellence and Rainbow PUSH Coalition will be visiting the schools in a PUSH For Excellence school community each day this week to encourage attendance. Ministers are urged to call every parent in their congregation to make sure that all students attended school every day this week.


We want our students to be prepared with school supplies and book bags. Parents and students should call PUSH for Excellence and Rainbow PUSH Coalition at 773-256-2762 or 773-256-2700 to register for a book bag. Supplies will be distributed Saturday morning, August 31, 2013.  All parents and students should arrive by 9:00 a.m. at 930 E. 50thStreet, Chicago, Illinois.


Rev. Jesse L. Jackson Sr., Founder and President of Rainbow Coalition reminds parents that “Your children need your presence more than your presents” and students that “If they can conceive it and believe it, they can achieve it. They must know it is not their aptitude but their attitude that will determine their altitude.


PUSH For Excellence and Rainbow PUSH Coalition staff representatives will be contacting our parents and visiting parents at schools in Chicago trying to reach our goal of 10,000 parents making a commitment to become involved in their child’s education by implementing the PUSH For Excellence and Rainbow PUSH Coalition Seven Point Parent Pledge and the Five Point Student Pledge. 


We invite ministers and parents who are interested in receiving copies of the pledges to go to or call Rev. Janette C Wilson at 773-256-2731, Michelle Chambers at 773-256-2762 or Jason Robinson at 773-256- 2761 to request copies. 


Parents Pledge


I Will…


1.     Take my child to school

2.     Meet my child’s teacher

3.     Exchange phone numbers with my child’s teacher

4.     Turn off the TV three hours a night so my child may study

5.     Pick up my child’s report card each grading period

6.     Take my child to a place of worship once a week

7.     Fight for equal adequate funding for public education


Student’s Pledge


I Will…


1.     Attend school daily and strive for excellence in all that I do;

2.     Respect the authority of my parents and teachers;

3.     Study three hours each night without interruptions from anything or anyone;

4.     Read each day; and

5.     Complete all classroom and homework assignments.


“I pledge the share the burden of my generation, to help stop brothers and sisters from killing brothers and sisters. I will choose hope over dope and life over death."


Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a multi-racial, multi-issue, progressive, international organization that was formed in December 1996 by the Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. through merging of two organizations he founded Operation PUSH  People United to Serve Humanity (estab. 1971) and the Rainbow Coalition (estab. 1984). With headquarters in Chicago and offices in Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, New York and Oakland, the organization works to make the American Dream a reality for all citizens while advocating for peace and justice around the world. RPC is dedicated to improving the lives of all people by serving as a voice for the voiceless. Its mission is to protect, defend and gain civil rights by leveling the economic and educational playing fields while promoting peace and justice around the world.