APPLETON, Wis. (WBAY) - Just weeks away from the start of the school year and advocates of public education are rallying together for kids.
Teachers, parents, administrators, community members and business owners are meeting in appleton today for the annual Wisconsin Public Education Network summer summit, proving students aren't the only ones learning in schools.
"We have people from all over the state who support public schools, who support each other, learning from each other and helping everyone's advocacy," says Dr. Julie Underwood from the Ribbon Commission on School Funding.
Big supporters of public education, the group is working to make sure every student in wisconsin is offered the best opportunities in the classroom.
Heather DuBois Bourenane is on the summit planning committee. According to her, "We are here today to tap into the energy and celebrate the amazing things that are going on in public schools all over the state and share some of the serious concerns that people have, statewide about funding, about student performance, about what we can do - where we live to make a difference in the lives of kids and communities."
Through guest speakers and breakout sessions, attendees are hearing about the state of public education in Wisconsin. They're networking and gaining tools to continue to improve schools for kids. Leaving with a knowledge of how they can make things better for students from Pre-K through high school.
"I think our children represent the future. Their future is still bright, we just have to actively advocate for them and make sure they remain a priority," says Yolanda Tolson Eveans, a mother from Sun Prairie.
And as the next school year approaches, these advocates want to see additional funding in schools for early education and mental health, as well as a focus on special education students.