Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Tennessee Clergy for Educational Choice to Hold Press Conference Supporting Parental Choice

Coalition will present collected petitions supporting educational choice to the governor and legislature

Press Release, NASHVILLE, TENN. (Feb. 19, 2015) - The Tennessee Clergy for Educational Choice will host a press conference at the State Capitol in Nashville on Thursday, February 26 to present the governor and legislature collected petitions from Tennesseans that support educational choice. Pastors in the Memphis Chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference initiated the petition drive in November 2014 to give families more power and options when it comes to their children’s education.

What: Tennessee Clergy Press Conference Supporting Parental School Choice
Where: State Capitol, Room LP30
When: Thursday, February 26, 8:00 AM
Who: The Tennessee Clergy for Educational Choice, a coalition of 29 clergy members who support empowering parents through educational choice and represent approximately 50,000 congregants. The coalition strongly supports the passage of educational choice legislation that puts children first and foremost like the Tennessee Choice and Opportunity Scholarship Act.
Pastor Dwight Montgomery of the Memphis Chapter of the SCLC wrote an educational choice petition letter which can be found here:

Members of the Tennessee Clergy for Educational Choice:

Rev. Dr. James Adams,  TN Regular Baptist Convention, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. J.C. Bacchus,  St. Mark Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. Brain Bartlett, Lake Grove Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. Bassil Brooks, Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church,  (Shelby County)
Bishop E. Lynn Brown, Memphis Baptist Ministerial Association CME, New Mt. Zion Church,(Shelby County)
Rev. Wendell Coward, Greater Mt Zion Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. Coleman Crawford, Grace Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Dr. Jacqueline Crockett, Word of Deliverance Faith Ministries, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. Leonard Dawson, Cane Creek Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. James Delaney, St. John Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. Maurice Dickerson, Chairman of Education Committee Memphis Baptist Ministerial Association, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. C.S. Greer, Vice-President, Memphis Baptist Ministerial Association, Hopewell Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. Frank Harris, Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. R. B. Holmes, Jr., Bethel Missionary Baptist Church, (National)
Rev. Dr. Roosevelt T. Joyner, Koinonia Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Elder JE Lewis, Pastor, Memphis Baptist Ministerial Association, (Shelby County)
Rev. H. K. Matthews, Civil Rights Pioneer, (National)
Rev. Dr. Marvin Mercer, President, TN Baptist Missionary Edu. Convention, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. Dwight Montgomery, Annesdale Cherokee Missionary Baptist Church, Pres., Memphis Chapter SCLC
(Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. J. L. Payne, Greater Mt. Moriah Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. Stacy Spencer, New Direction Christian Church, (Shelby County)
Bishop Ed Stephens, Jr., Golden Gate Cathedral, (Shelby County)
Rev. Nelson B Stokes, Breath of Life SDA Church,  (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. C.W. Tutton, Ellis Grove Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Dr. Eunice Warfield Superintendent (SDA), South Central Conference,  (Davidson County)
Dr. Kenneth T. Whalum, Jr.,The New Olivet Baptist Church, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. Luther Williams, President, Memphis Baptist Ministerial Association New Mt. Zion Church, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. John Wilkins,  Hunters Chapel Church, (Shelby County)
Rev. Dr. Walter Womack, Faithful Baptist Church, (Shelby County)

My Comment: It is worth noting that The Southern Christian Leadership Conference, is an African-American civil right organization and the church leaders who are part of Tennessee Clergy for Educational Choice are Black ministers. School choice is an issue that has been championed most ofter by conservatives and generally opposed by teachers unions and other liberals.  Many liberals would prefer to see Blacks remain in failing schools rather than let Black parents have choice to send their child to a better school. I do not expect this crack in the liberal coalition to lead to a political realignment immediately, but it is encouraging. School choice is the civil right battle of our time. A welfare check traps a person in poverty, but giving a child a good education liberates a person from poverty. Time and time again charter schools have shown that Black children from low-income homes can excel if given the right educational environment where expectations are high.

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