Tag: Education

Appleseed responds to 2018 State of the State address

***For Immediate Release*** January 10, 2018   Contact, Jeff Sheldon Communications Director, Nebraska Appleseed Office: (402) 438-8853 Mobile: (402) 840-7289 Email: jsheldon@neappleseed.org   Appleseed Executive Director Rebecca Gould responds to State of the State address Further revenue cuts will worsen budget shortfall, focus must be on investing in healthy communities and educated workforce   LINCOLN — Wednesday, Nebraska Appleseed Executive… Read more →

Legislative Update – January 23, 2017

Last week marked the final day of bill introduction in the 2017 Nebraska Legislative session. Several bills we consider top priorities were introduced, and we’ll be testifying at several committee hearings this week. Health coverage for hard-working Nebraskans Last week, Sen. Adam Morfeld introduced LB 441, a bill that would allow nearly 100,000 uninsured Nebraskans with low incomes to get… Read more →

New report calls for study of Nebraska’s for-profit Colleges

For Immediate Release                           December 28, 2015   Contact, James Goddard Economic Justice Director, Nebraska Appleseed (402) 570-9462 (cell) jgoddard@neappleseed.org   New report calls for study of Nebraska’s for-profit colleges High student debt, default rates, and limited performance measures warrant Legislative inquiry   LINCOLN — A new report released today by Nebraska Appleseed reveals concerning outcomes for Nebraska’s for-profit colleges… Read more →

Recent Education Reforms Protect Youth in Foster Care  

December has been a big month in the federal government for education policy reform to help support young people with foster care experience as well as other at-risk youth. The passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and the introduction of the Higher Education Access and Success for Homeless and Foster Youth Act will bring positive changes and protections… Read more →

RELEASE – New report recommends increasing access to education programs in Nebraska prisons

For Immediate Release                           December 2, 2015   Contact, Jeff Sheldon Communications Director, Nebraska Appleseed (402) 438-8853 (office) (402) 840-7289 (cell) jsheldon@neappleseed.org   New report recommends increasing access to education programs in Nebraska prisons Increased access to education will reduce recidivism, lead to new job opportunities after incarceration   LINCOLN — Education is essential not just for the individual who… Read more →

New Report shows increased workforce need for Adult Basic Education

Contact, Jeff Sheldon Communications Director, Nebraska Appleseed Office: (402) 438-8853 Mobile: (402) 840-7289 jsheldon@neappleseed.org   Report: More investment in Adult Basic Education would improve Nebraska workforce Hard-working Nebraskans need more skills to compete in changing economy   LINCOLN — A new report released Monday shows Nebraska’s need to invest more in Adult Basic Education (ABE). The report, “Adult Education in… Read more →

RELEASE – More Nebraska schools can offer meals to hungry kids

***For Immediate Release*** May 1, 2014 Contact, Jeff Sheldon Communications Director, Nebraska Appleseed Office: (402) 438-8853 Mobile: (402) 840-7289 jsheldon@neappleseed.org   Nearly 100 Nebraska Schools Eligible to Participate in Free School Meals Today, the Nebraska Department of Education announced 94 schools in Nebraska will be eligible to serve more free meals to students using a powerful new tool known as… Read more →

Appleseed Summer Interns and Law Clerks – Meet Sheila Soto

Note: Each year, Nebraska Appleseed is fortunate to work with a number of bright, talented law clerks and interns. This is one of a series of posts that feature Appleseed’s clerks and interns discussing their backgrounds and experiences. Name: Sheila Soto Position: Immigrants & Communities Intern Hometown: Glenns Ferry, Idaho About me: I am the first in my family to… Read more →

More ADC participants can now use Education Activities to meet Work Requirements

Last week, Nebraska took a major step forward in supporting the educational needs of adults making low incomes. With LB 240 now in effect, all parents in the Aid to Dependent Children (ADC) Program can meet their full work requirement by participating in GED, English as a Second Language, or Adult Basic Education programs. In the past, restrictions around age… Read more →

Appleseed In Action – News and Events for August 2013

In this August edition of “Appleseed in Action” Take Action to support common-sense immigration reform Rebuild Nebraska pushes for sustainable tax structure Protect SNAP for Nebraska families and children Alex Gibilisco joins Immigrants & Communities Meet our Law Clerks and Interns Appleseed at the Maha Music Festival August is a crucial month to ask your congressman to support common-sense immigration… Read more →

New Study: Risky tax plan likely would raise taxes for most Nebraskans

Today, OpenSky Policy Institute, a nonpartisan Nebraska organization dedicated to fiscal research and analysis, released results of a new study on what a large cut in the state’s income tax could mean for our state’s economy. The results indicate Nebraska would send a large chunk of revenue out of state if it implemented a risky tax structure that recently has… Read more →

Appleseed Law Clerks and Interns – Meet Emily Johnson

Note: Each year, Nebraska Appleseed is fortunate to work with a number of bright, talented law clerks and interns. This is one of a series of posts that feature Appleseed’s clerks and interns discussing their backgrounds and experiences. Name: Emily Johnson Hometown: Victorville, California Position: Economic Justice Intern About Me: “I go school at Hastings College, I’m a senior this… Read more →

Appleseed Summer Law Clerks and Interns – Meet Makayla Haussler

Note: Each summer, Nebraska Appleseed is fortunate to work with a number of bright, talented law clerks and interns. This is one of a series of posts that feature Appleseed’s clerks and interns discussing their backgrounds and experiences. Name: Makayla Haussler Position: Intern Hometown: Lincoln, Neb. (Junior-to-be at Lincoln Southwest High School) About me: “I’m about to be a junior… Read more →

Appleseed Summer Law Clerks and Interns – Meet Alexis Yim

Note: Each summer, Nebraska Appleseed is fortunate to work with a number of bright, talented law clerks and interns. This is one of a series of posts that feature Appleseed’s clerks and interns discussing their backgrounds and experiences. Name: Taeuum “Alexis” Yim Position: Intern Hometown: Busan, South Korea About Me: Alexis transferred to the University of Nebraska last year and… Read more →

Appleseed Summer Law Clerks and Interns – Meet Victoria Rosenboom

Note: Each summer, Nebraska Appleseed is fortunate to work with a number of bright, talented law clerks and interns. This is one of a series of posts that feature Appleseed’s clerks and interns discussing their backgrounds and experiences. Name: Victoria Rosenboom Position: Fellow Hometown: Ashland, Nebraska About Victoria: Victoria is a senior at Nebraska Wesleyan University, studying political science and… Read more →

Educational opportunity bill signed into law, will help low-income families become secure

Education is one of the best paths out of poverty.  Indeed, literacy, GED credentials, and other basic education skills are absolutely essential for economic independence. The Nebraska Legislature made strides towards making education more accessible by passing a bill that helps improve educational opportunities for low-income families. LB 240, a bill sponsored by Senator John Harms, allows low-income parents over… Read more →

Free webinar on supportive services available for Nebraska students

Nebraska Appleseed invites you to attend our upcoming webinar regarding supportive services for students in Nebraska, Extra Credit: A Guide to Resources for Non-Traditional, Parenting, and Low-Income Learners on Thursday May 2 from 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. James Goddard, director of Appleseed’s Economic Justice and Health Care Access programs will give you the information you need to help students… Read more →

Free screening of Precious Knowledge highlights importance of cultural education

On Tuesday, January 22, Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle and several Omaha organizations will sponsor a FREE showing of Precious Knowledge, a film that highlights one of the final years of the highly successful Mexican-American Studies Program at Tucson High School and the fight to abolish the program after Arizona lawmakers abolished ethnic studies classes in 2011. Following the 7:00 p.m. screening at the… Read more →

Working Poor Families Report shows more families working low-paying, unstable jobs

Despite more families holding jobs, the ranks of the working poor are increasing according to a new report from the Working Poor Families Project. The report, “Low-Income Working Families: The Growing Economic Gap,” shows nearly one-third of the nation’s working families are paid wages so low they struggle to meet their basic needs. Indeed, according to the report, 32 percent… Read more →

Nebraska Appleseed issues response to State of the State Address

Nebraska Appleseed Executive Director Becky Gould issued the following statement in response to the Governor’s State of the State Address today. “This morning, Governor Heineman laid out his priorities for the next year in his State of the State Address.  We agree that the State of Nebraska is strong and a great place to live.  Because of this, we are… Read more →

Appleseed 2012 Year in Review – Expanding Opportunities for Nebraska’s Low-Income Families

This is part of a series looking back on Nebraska Appleseed’s work in 2012. Protecting right to treatment for young children with developmental disabilities In May, Nebraska Appleseed filed a lawsuit on behalf of two children with developmental disabilities who were denied Medicaid coverage of medical treatments despite the treatments being deemed medically necessary by their doctors. Read the petition… Read more →

Extra Credit: Resources for Non-Traditional, Parenting, and Low-Income Students

Getting a degree is one of the best long-term pathways out of poverty for low income families.  Degree completion is also important to colleges and universities, especially important now as more non-traditional students are seeking post-secondary education. Research shows that access to public assistance programs, such as Medicaid and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, can help keep students in school… Read more →

Bridge programs train high-skilled workers for a stronger economy

Nebraska Appleseed does a lot of work to encourage more educational opportunities for people with lower incomes because we believe education is the best ladder for people to climb out of poverty. Better education means better, higher-paying jobs that can support families and allow hard-working Nebraskans to be self-sufficient.  By 2018, 66 percent of all jobs in Nebraska will require… Read more →

Choosing Education

At a time when the highest-paying occupations and fastest-growing fields in Nebraska all require some type of academic credential or training, job-seeking adults with limited educational backgrounds are often at a disadvantage. Fortunately, parents in the Aid to Dependent Children (ADC) program have the right to take part in meaningful work activities that help them reach their goals – including… Read more →

September News from Nebraska Appleseed

In this September edition of “Appleseed in Action”: New data on poverty in America UNMC report reveals Medicaid expansion would cover 90,000 uninsured Deferred Action Forum: a new opportunity for DREAMers Appleseed files petition for hearing on meatpacking worker health & safety Join us at the Good Apple Awards on October 4 New data on poverty in America On Wednesday,… Read more →

Across-the-Board Budget Cuts will Hurt Crucial Nebraska Programs

Nebraska and all the states will face devastating cuts to their federal funding beginning January 1, 2013, if no action is taken by Congress to address the automatic cuts required by the Budget Control Act. The Budget Control Act required a committee to come to a deal regarding budget cuts to make for deficit reduction. Unfortunately, the committee did not… Read more →

A Step Forward for Aspiring U.S. Citizens

Tomorrow, applications for the important new deferred action policy for DREAMers will be released. This worthwhile policy grants temporary relief from deportation for DREAMers – young, aspiring citizens who have grown up in the United States – and allows applicants to apply for a two-year work permit. Most important, it reaffirms that these youth are already Americans in all but… Read more →

Hope for DREAMers, a Sensible Immigration System, and Time for Action…

On Friday, June 15th, President Obama announced an encouraging new policy that will grant relief from deportations for undocumented youth who are known as DREAMers. These young immigrants grew up in United States and dream of using their education and skills to contribute to society. They are American in all ways except for one—paperwork—but last week’s announcement was a long-awaited… Read more →

Educate, Innovate to Compete

It’s March Madness. If your office is anything like Nebraska Appleseed’s, the intense water cooler conversations have begun. Competition can bring out the best in us. It can push us to stretch our boundaries, find new ways to get things done, and do our best. It’s time for Nebraska to educate and innovate to compete. LB 1079 is currently under… Read more →

Ensure Low-Income Parents Can Access Education As a Path Out of Poverty

The Aid to Dependent Children program provides critical support to very low-income families and has the goal of helping families achieve economic security as quickly as possible.  A key part of the program is that all adults must participate in a work activity for at least 30 hours a week.  Currently, parents participating in Nebraska’s ADC program may pursue an… Read more →

A Win-Win for Business Growth and Work Experience

Nebraskans have a strong work ethic, and our labor force is one of our most important economic strengths. Nebraska businesses, especially small businesses, rely on our workers to help create economic growth and success. LB 1136 would utilize existing funds to provide employers opportunities to bring on additional employees with time-limited wage subsidies to help their businesses grow. It would… Read more →

Legislation Leads to Higher Education for Parents

Legislation passed by the Nebraska Unicameral in 2009 is opening the doors to higher education for low-income parents, according to a report released today by the Nebraska Appleseed Center for Law in the Public Interest entitled “Choosing Education.” The report indicates that 13.3% of Nebraska’s cash welfare caseload is currently engaged in education that could lead to an Associates Degree, thanks in… Read more →

Addressing the Skills Gap and Building Our Future Workforce

We fully support LB 1079 and believe it will both build opportunity and effectively leverage resources for positive impact. Improving the education and skills of our current workers is essential to our future workforce competitiveness. Nebraska faces a skills gap in the future and working families are a part of the solution. [DDET LB 1079 Testimony] My name is Kate… Read more →

Appleseed at the Legislature

The 2012 Legislative session is off to a fast and furious start.  We are already a third of the way through this short (60 day) session and Nebraska Appleseed is working on more bills than ever before.  We’d like to highlight some of the key issues we are working on in our programs and give you an opportunity to get… Read more →

Improve Service Delivery and Efficiency in the Department of Health & Human Services

On February 1, the Health and Human Services Committee held a hearing on LB 1041 and LB 1016. Both of these bills are intended to address problems with the ACCESS Nebraska system. Appleseed supports both of these bills. LB 1041 would streamline HHS systems to make them more efficient and effective for everyone. LB 1016 would provide resources to community… Read more →

HHS Budget Should Invest in Children and Families

On Monday, Nebraska Appleseed’s Executive Director testified at the Appropriations Committee in response to the Nebraska Department of Health & Human Services’ appropriation request.  Appleseed believes that DHHS’s budget must invest in and protect low-income children and families’ needs. [DDET Appleseed Testimony] Senator Lavon Heidemann Chair, Appropriations Committee State Capitol, Room 1004 Lincoln, NE 68509 Re: Agency 25, Department of… Read more →

It’s That Time of Year…

The holidays are a time of year when our thoughts turn to people who are struggling in our communities.  It’s a time of year when we are not only thinking of the needs of our friends and neighbors, but also of the reasons behind their difficulties, and hoping for a year ahead with new possibilities and opportunities for family success.… Read more →

More Diplomas

I remember the feeling of satisfaction I had when I hammered a nail into the wall of my first “real” office and hung up my diploma – a feeling of satisfaction and pride. A feeling that my hard work had finally materialized into something concrete that I could hang on a wall. Across the state, hardworking Nebraska families have that… Read more →

Committee Protects Nebraska’s In-state Tuition Education Policy

The Lincoln Journal Star today reported that the Legislature’s Education Committee voted down a bill that sought to repeal Nebraska’s in-state tuition law. Dozens of educational, community, faith, and legal institutions testified in support of protecting Nebraska’s in-state tuition policy at the committee hearing on February 7. Some of the testifiers included the University of Nebraska, the Post-Secondary Commission, the Nebraska… Read more →

Smart Choices, Silver Linings

In good times and in bad, families and communities remain priorities for Nebraska.  The economic downturn has had an impact on state budgets and on family budgets, and our state leaders are facing difficult choices in the 2011 legislative session. In spite of this challenge, several bills that are positive for families are gaining momentum.  These bills help our government… Read more →

A Personal Reflection on Nebraska’s In-State Tuition Law

Alex Gibilisco is a Junior at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and an intern this semester at Nebraska Appleseed.  Alex immigrated with his family to the United States from Guatemala at the age of 10. Alex submitted the following testimony to the Legislature’s Education Committee Monday, February 7 in opposition to LB 657, which would repeal Nebraska’s in-state tuition law. Dear… Read more →

Opportunity: Points of View

A small business of her own. A chance to coach sports. A college degree. These are just a few of the American Dreams of Nebraskans profiled in “Opportunity: Points of View” a new photography exhibit supported by Nebraska Appleseed. The exhibit reflects the stories of hardworking Nebraskans who have overcome life obstacles, ranging from a young Mom in Ogallala to… Read more →

What it Really Means to “Make Ends Meet” in Nebraska

$16.39 per hour. That’s what it takes to “make ends meet” for a single parent with a preschooler in Omaha. It’s $15.38 in Lincoln, and $11.66 in Scottsbluff. These numbers are just a few examples of the wages needed by families in Nebraska based on the newly released “Self-Sufficiency Standard for Nebraska 2010” released by Nebraska Appleseed. “The Self-Sufficiency Standard… Read more →

A DREAM Denied

Despite majority support for the DREAM Act in the House, the Senate, and the American public, Nebraska’s Congressional delegation, to a member, voted against the bill, which was procedurally blocked from moving forward by a filibuster in the Senate on Saturday.  The DREAM Act would allow students who were brought to this country at a young age a means to… Read more →

Jobs Jobs Jobs

Jobs: they’re what’s on everyone’s mind as we work to build economic recovery.  What job opportunities are available in Nebraska?  What jobs are “good jobs”?  What jobs have growth potential?  What jobs pay wages that support families? Our “Nebraska Appleseed’s Top Jobs for Families in 2010: Jobs that Contribute to Economic Recovery and Family Success“ report is intended to contribute… Read more →

Filling the Skills Gap in Nebraska

In 44% of low-income Nebraska families, neither parent has any post-secondary education. In 2018, 66% of jobs in Nebraska will require post-secondary education. There is a skills gap in our state: too many folks lack high school and post-secondary credentials, and too many jobs require them.  This is a problem for workers now, and for our overall economy in the… Read more →

Smart Choices in Hard Times

Best practices for addressing state budget shortfalls have been identified by a group of ten nonprofit organizations today in a report entitled “Smart Choices in Hard Times: Best Practices for State Budgets.” “When budgets are tight, families are counting on smart budget choices that protect what matters most.  We have to look at the budget as a whole so that… Read more →

An Urgent Conversation: The 2010 Building Nebraska’s Future Workforce Forum

Nebraska is at a crossroads. The choices we make today about building and supporting our workforce will impact quality of life in our state for years to come. According to the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, Nebraska ranks 7th in the nation for future need for workers with post-secondary education, yet only 36% of our workers have… Read more →

Smart Choices in Hard Times

Nebraska’s budget should reflect Nebraska’s priorities. This seems like a simple statement, but really, it says quite a lot. It says that Nebraska values of family and community should drive our budget choices, it says that our shared resources should be directed at strengthening our families and workers, and it says that we should invest in opportunities that allow people… Read more →

Sometimes Historic Change Takes Heroic Acts

Last week, Nebraska student and wrestling champion Daniel Dominguez walked from O’Neill to Lincoln – covering 200 miles on foot – to raise awareness about the federal DREAM Act. To learn more about his incredible journey and the critical importance of the legislation, go to www.passthedreamact.org. The DREAM Act is federal legislation that would allow talented students without legal status… Read more →

Moving the World Along

“I long to accomplish great and noble tasks, but it is my chief duty to accomplish humble tasks as if they were great and noble. The world is moved along, not only by the mighty shoves of its heroes, but also by the aggregate of the tiny pushes of each honest worker.” – Helen Keller This quotation has hung on… Read more →

Time to Take the Nebraska Education & Welfare Model Nationwide

Education is one of the clearest pathways out of poverty. Nebraska Appleseed has been repeating this statement nearly since our inception, and our work has paid off:  Nebraska welfare recipients are able to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree full time, and recently, our state expanded the time frame that recipients can pursue an Associate’s Degree from 12 months to 36 months.… Read more →

Changing the Odds

Last week, we launched our Economic Opportunity Campaign, which is a values based policy agenda to build opportunity in the state.   The Campaign puts forth a vision where programs and policies change the odds for working Nebraskans. The vision includes job training, adult education, child care assistance, and access to health care. In that spirit, we are celebrating five fantastic… Read more →

Putting Nebraska Students First

Educational opportunity for all Nebraska students was the focus of a committee hearing at the State Capitol last week. The Education Committee heard testimony on LB 1001, which would repeal Nebraska’s in-state tuition law—an important educational policy for Nebraska’s future. This law allows Nebraska students who are undocumented to pay in-state tuition rates if they resided in and attended school… Read more →

Kitchen Tables

I love Thanksgiving.  My Dad (my favorite farmer) cooks for us, and this year, I have not one but two beautiful nieces to giggle with at the table.  This is what valuing family means to me.  I am grateful for a good meal, for family, and even for the baby drool and stuffing that will inevitably end up on my… Read more →

Learning (Aprendizaje)

Last week, I was lucky enough to sit in on an adult education class in a small Nebraska community. The first assignment was to write a simple letter to a friend. Many of the students were attending the class in order to learn English. In an attempt to see what the class might be like for the students, I took… Read more →

The Floor Is Yours

Last week I attended a town hall meeting hosted by the State Senators representing Lincoln and Lancaster County about the current budget shortfall and the upcoming special session of the State Legislature to address the gap. I was genuinely touched by the number of Nebraskans speaking out on behalf of low income families.  Person after person stood up to speak… Read more →

How Can Nebraska Come Out Ahead In The Economic Recovery?

Brain drain, a high proportion of low-wage jobs, and the current economic downturn all negatively impact the well-being of Nebraska’s families, communities, and economy. At the same time, our workforce is one of the most dedicated in the nation and, in spite of recent increases, our unemployment rate is one of the lowest in the nation. So what do we… Read more →

The Good News

In these times of economic struggle, it’s tempting to focus only on the difficulties facing our state and our families. While the Low Income Self Sufficiency Program will continue to address issues ranging from unemployment to increased poverty rates, this week, we’re taking a hiatus from the problematic to bring you some good news. And, in fact, there’s plenty of… Read more →

More than Numbers

One in ten Nebraskans currently lives in poverty according to new Census data released last week. One in ten…One in ten folks driving down I-80 on your commute to work this morning…One in ten parents at your PTA meeting…One in ten people attending your church service on Sunday… The truth is that the recession is taking a toll on our… Read more →

The “Good Life Index”

What is “The Good Life”? We Nebraskans love to talk about it, but I don’t often hear people define it. Think about it for a minute – what does “The Good Life” mean to you? This term means different things to different people, but generally, it refers to a high quality of life that involves healthy people, safe communities, and… Read more →

Back to School Breakfast

Today many children across the state don new backpacks, sharpen their pencils, and begin the giddy walk to the first day of school.  Thinking about the first day of a new school year always makes me remember the nervous feeling I would have in my stomach on the first day, accompanied by a series of questions running through my mind:… Read more →

“Know Your Rights” Video Premier!

[kaltura-widget wid=”o1s82qbvqo” width=”400″ height=”365″ style=”margin-left: 0px; margin-right: 5px;” addpermission=”” editpermission=”” align=”right” /]Recently, I attended a great event entitled “Tools for Education” at an organization that is doing excellent work in Nebraska, the Center for People in Need. In addition to sharing backpacks and notebooks to prepare kids for the upcoming school year, the Center for People in Need gave folks… Read more →

“The arc of history is long, but it bends towards justice.” MLK Jr.

In the next few months, it will be my job to tell people about a recent Nebraska Appleseed “win.”  This year, Nebraska Appleseed, along with Senator Harms from Scottsbluff and numerous advocates and supporters, worked to pass LB 458, legislation that allows families that participate in the Aid to Dependent Children (ADC) program to pursue an education for 36 months.… Read more →

Being the Change

What does a good public assistance program look like? From the Appleseed point of view, basic principles would apply:  Folks would have all the information they need to make good decisions, clients would have opportunities for choice and self-determination, and all people would be treated with dignity and respect. Our legal and public policy reform efforts continually work to create this vision… Read more →

I Left My Heart in Scottsbluff County

Visionary.  Strategic.  Innovative.  These are a few of the words I would use to describe the folks that attended our Town Hall meeting in Scottsbluff, Nebraska http://www.wehavejobs.net/ last week.  Scottsbluff may be considered a small community by some, but the leaders I spoke with had big ideas for their community and for the state. The meeting addressed three major issues:… Read more →

Multiple Choice

One in ten Nebraska adults does not have a High School Diploma or General Equivalency Diploma (GED). Startling, isn’t it? In our evolving, knowledge-based, technology-driving economy, the lack of basic skills is a real barrier – not only for workers in need of jobs that pay family supporting wages, but also for employers in need of skilled workers. In spite… Read more →