Kelley Williams-Bolar is in the spotlight again -- this time, as a spokesperson for a Cleveland-based school choice program.
When last spotted, Williams-Bolar was on the receiving end of Governor Kasich's clemency order clearing her felony record for records falsification. Now she's heading up a group called the Ohio Parents Union, and will be a featured speaker at a Cleveland school choice rally. Her supporters at the Bernard Center for Women based outside of Washington say she was "the Ohio mother arrested for stealing education" in a news release.
Williams-Bolar's case drew national attention for much of 2011, including a full program (photo, left) on the nationally-syndicated "Dr. Phil" television program.
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(Bernard Center for Women) Kelley Williams-Bolar, the Ohio mother who was arrested for “stealing education” and now heads the Ohio Parents Union, will join Michelle Bernard, President and CEO of the Bernard Center for Women, Politics and Public Policy and Pastor Andrew D. Clark Sr. of Trinity Outreach Ministries to rally parents and their children this Sunday, February 22, to become foot soldiers for school choice at an Education Equality rally in Cleveland.
“As we approach the end of Black History Month, it’s important to remember that our civil rights struggle continues,” said Bernard. “Education equality is the key to raising all children out of poverty and making sure that our future is brighter than the darkest days of our past.”
“We are thrilled to have Kelley Williams-Bolar share the story of her fight for educational equality for her children,” Bernard continued. “And hosting this event at Trinity Outreach Ministries, where they do so much important work to support their community and the fight for education in Cleveland is an honor.”
Kelley Williams-Bolar served 9 days in jail for “stealing education” in January 2011. Her “crime” was enrolling her children in a safer school district than the one in which she resided. Now, Williams-Bolar heads up the Ohio Parents Union, modeled after the Parent Trigger that was started in California.
Ohio is embracing school choice. The state has provided school choice options since 1995 and has pending legislation to expand some programs. There are currently 368 full-time charter schools and 27 full-time online charter school programs. Last January, Governor John Kasich issued a resolution designating January 22nd-28th School Choice Week in Ohio.