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Email: gscschools@gmail.com
Phone: 609-394-2828 (office)
             732-618-5755 (cell)

Mailing Address:
Garden State Coalition of Schools
Elisabeth Ginsburg, Executive Director
160 West State Street
Trenton, New Jersey 08608

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GSCS Membership Inquiry letter ('09-'10) and Information

About Us: Garden State Coalition of Schools

What Does GSCS Believe?

• A permanent commitment to improving education without diminishing quality

• A broad perspective that reflects the concerns of educators, lay leadership and communities and parents

• Focused advocacy with expertise in school funding

• A primary focus on the inter-related issues of academic achievement, educational practices and school finance

• Continuing school programs that have led to high student achievement Who Belongs to GSCS?

• GSCS is a statewide organization, its members spanning New Jersey from Camden County to Bergen County

• Once considered primarily suburban, GSCS members have quintupled since 1992 and now include districts with a range of financial resources.

• Member districts represent approximately 400,000 public school children.

• Participants are a unique mix of parents, board of education members and superintendents who bring a broad perspective to GSCS initiatives.

How Is the Coalition Organized?

• A 24-district Board of Trustees meets monthly. The Parent Network Coordinator is a voting member of the Board.

• GSCS has only one full time staff person and is funded solely through member district dues.

• Member districts join through a Board of Education resolution.

What Makes GSCS Effective?

• GSCS is led by a highly motivated, volunteer membership and is grass roots in its decision-making.

• GSCS is tightly organized and able to gather and analyze information and make recommendations in a short time frame.

• GSCS is the only statewide educational organization that serves parents, school administrators Board of Education members.

• GSCS reaches out to work with education partners throughout NJ.

• GSCS maintains a presence in Trenton and is able to mobilize its statewide membership, bringing local educators, parents, and state legislators and policymakers together quickly.

• GSCS is a leading advocate for public support of public education for all children, not just those in one socio-economic group.

(New Member Inquiry letter/generic)- Garden State Coalition of Schools 204 West State Street, Trenton NJ 08608 609 394 2828; 732 681 5755 (cell); gscs2000@gmail.com www.gscschools.org

On behalf of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, it is my pleasure to welcome the interest of your school district in becoming a member of our statewide association. Please extend a warm hello to your Board of Education and its President as well. We hope to work with your Board of Education and community as GSCS brings the voice of suburban school districts to our lawmakers in Trenton and the people of New Jersey.

GSCS is a member-driven, grass-roots organization that is directed by its 24 Trustee Districts. This Executive Board helps the organization decide policy and direction. All member districts are encouraged to send representatives to the Executive Board meetings, for member input and feedback contribute greatly to helping GSCS present our common denominator concerns to Trenton.

The GSCS meetings calendar can be found at our website www.gscschools.org under the ‘Board Information link’ on the sidebar. GSCS meetings, whether the General Membership or the monthly Board of Trustees meetings, are a valuable source of information and interaction for GSCS leadership and members. Many look forward to the meetings as a chance to network and gather critical information concerning state actions and political news.

GSCS is the only education focused advocacy group in New Jersey that represents Board of Education members, superintendents, administrators, and parents and community members. As such, GSCS is seen in Trenton as grassroots and focused on community concerns.

Dues for the 2009-2010 remain the same as those for 2008-2009 at $1850. The dues are prorated to the month a district strikes its resolution to join GSCS. For further information, please see the GSCS "New Member Form" found on the GSCS website, under the 'Members' link.

I have included a summary of GSCS achievements over the past 17 years, which you may want to share with your Board of Education members. Please remind your community to visit our web site regularly (www.gscschools.org) for up-to-the-minute NJ education news.

Again, we appreciate your district’s willingness to consider being a member of GSCS. We welcome the opportunity to work with you.

If you have questions or need further information, please feel free to contact me at gscs2000@gmail.com or 732 / 618-5755 [cell].

Cordially,

(Lynne) Lynne Strickland, GSCS Executive Director

cc: Jim O’Neill, GSCS President 2009-2010 _ GARDEN STATE COALITION OF SCHOOLS FOUNDERS’ MISSION STATEMENT 1992

The purpose of the Garden State Coalition of Schools (GSCS) is to promote educational practices, reasonable state regulations and state laws which further high quality education for all children. GSCS’ primary focus is on the interrelated issues of academic achievement education practices and school finance.

GSCS support efforts towards more equitable education opportunities for all school children. Wise public policy includes a permanent commitment to both quality and equity. GSCS believes that equity should be achieved by improving education and not by diminishing quality and eliminative school programs which have led to high student achievement


Garden State Coalition of Schools
160 W. State Street, Trenton New Jersey 08608
609-394-2828