Karran Harper Royal is ranked #25 of 59

I am a public school parent and education advocate determined to help parents have a voice in education policy making.
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My political story

Public education today is political. As I work to improve public education I have come to realize that I must get political. It's no longer enough to just vote. I decided that I needed to become a candidate for political office. Last year I ran for my local school board. I learned a lot of lessons from that experience. Although I was not successful at the ballot box, I was successful in building an all volunteer team of committed people who were reinvigorated in the political process. It was after my loss that I realized how important it is to help people realize the importance of their voice in the political process.

Why I deserve a Netroots Nation Scholarship

I deserve a Netroots Nation scholarship because after heeding the call at last years Netroots Nation conference, I used what I learned to take action and inspire others to get political. That was only the beginning. Attending Netroots nation again this year will give me the opportunity to learn more so that I can be an even better candidate, campaigner and organizer the next time I run for a political office.

What first inspired me to get involved

I was inspired to get involved to get involved in politics when i heard Van Jones encourage us to run for office at Netroots Nation.

The blog post I am most proud of

I created a blog called Education Talk New Orleans to help tell the story of education reform gone wrong in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. I am most proud of my blog post entitled Sen. Mary. Landrieu Wrong on Sci Academy. In this post I explain the truth about this new charter school's loss of students and the screwing of their test scores.

More about my political involvement

I am active in various civic and community organizations. After Hurricane Katrina I served on the boards of my neighborhood organization (oak Park Civic Association) and a broader community organization (Gentilly Civic Improvement Association). On both of these organizations, I was the education chairperson. With these organizations I led the charge to write a proposal to get one of the first of 5 new schools built in my neighborhood after the destruction of all of our neighborhood schools after hurricane Katrina. Of 18 proposals submitted, our proposal was selected for the school in our city council district. Later, as a volunteer, I built a steering committee that put together the programming for that new school building. I am the founder of Parents Across America New Orleans, I serve on the new Oreans Education Equity Roundtable, the Coalition for Community Schools and the Louisiana Coalition for Public Education. I also organize trips to our state legislature to help public school parents tell their stories to affect legislation.

How I've gotten others involved

I have engaged others through blogging, grassroots organizing and social media around issues related too public education through the various organizations where I volunteer.

Why I think participation in the netroots is important

Participation in Netroots is important because I learn the strategies that help me organize on the ground and online more effectively. I am also able to network with others from across the country.

My Twitter manifesto on online activism

Online activism connects me to others who the share my message with their followers thereby expanding my reach.

If I could design a bumper sticker it would say:

Closing schools is NOT a school improvement strategy!

My wild idea for a cool new action

The wildest idea I've ever had for a campaign was to buy large (4x8) banners and strap them to my car and park my car in various places around town because I could not afford billboards during my campaign for school board. I only had two banners, but my reach was multiplied because my banners were moveable and billboards are static.

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