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#WhyIChalkbeat: Show your support for local education reporting

Dear reader,

Maybe you read Chalkbeat during your coffee breaks. Or you scroll through Rise & Shine before your workday begins. Or maybe you talk about Chalkbeat stories with colleagues and friends who care just as much about education as you do. Whatever your style, there’s a word for what you do; you Chalkbeat!

To Chalkbeat ˈchȯk-ˈbēt verb: The act of contributing to, creating, reading, sharing, discussing, and/or acting on high-quality local stories about educational equity — all as part of a community of like-minded people.

This year, we are calling on our readers to make Chalkbeat’s work possible by:

  1. Sharing #WhyIChalkbeat on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram
  2. Making a monthly donation by clicking here

Personally, I Chalkbeat because I believe passionately that educational equity is foundational to ensuring a fighting chance for young people of any background and circumstance. In 2015, we have told the story of students like 2015 Memphis Melrose graduate Dellarontay Readus, who overcame a lifetime of hardship to earn a full scholarship to Stanford University. We also have dug deeper than anyone else into the issue of Tennessee’s stagnant reading scores.

I Chalkbeat because for every story about school turnaround work that we have told and for every question about TNReady that we have answered, there are hundreds more. Memphis alone has more than 300 public schools, each brimming with untold stories and unanswered questions. If we don’t write about them, who will?

While Chalkbeat is largely funded by the generosity of philanthropy and sponsors, your participation is vital to sustaining our work and independence. We believe that strong community journalism requires strong community support. Above all, we are accountable to you, our readers. To make sure we stay that way, we need your support.

Together, we can work towards a better informed Tennessee.

— Marta W. Aldrich, bureau chief

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