Why does AAUW public policy matter to the State College area? Education policy, science and technology careers for women (discussed in a previous column), health and wellness, and fair elections are some of our key concerns. We have groups studying each of these tasks and more, so that we can keep our members and the public aware of what is happening within our community and the state. We support the work of these groups through the proceeds from the Annual Used Book Sale.
The Education Committee, chaired by Carol Hodes (firstname.lastname@example.org), is currently working on issues such as school funding and the myriad questions related to the growth and structure of charter schools, both brick and mortar charters and cyber charters. Cyber charters are currently in the news, as the legislature studies how to make sure their funding is appropriate to their actual activities and their governance gives local districts sufficient input into their finances.
An even more pervasive problem is that of funding the public schools, one the committee revisits each spring as budget time approaches.
The Education Committee continues to explore other areas within the broad field of education and is happy to have new members.
The Women’s Health and Wellness Committee, chaired by Billie Willits (email@example.com), focuses on health issues germane to women. Recently, they have focused on advances in cancer treatment and mental health. However, there is much to study in this area and the committee continues to work on issues that its members find important in promoting women’s health and wellness into maturity.
Voter Education is another focus of the Public Policy Committee. Each election season, the committee reviews the candidates for election from all parties, as well as the issues coming before the people, and offers information on them including websites for the candidates and other sources of information. Committee chairs Mary Dupuis and Dianne Gregg work on this issue.
Finally, we are committed to helping Pennsylvania overcome the gerrymandering that plagues us. Sue Johnston (firstname.lastname@example.org) works with the statewide groups battling this issue.
Community members, as well as AAUW members, are welcome to take part in any of these activities and committees. You can contact the chairs specifically, or Mary Dupuis (email@example.com) or Dianne Gregg (firstname.lastname@example.org) for further information.
Mary Dupuis and Dianne Gregg, Co-chairs, Public Policy Committee, AAUW State College