Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Advocacy Alert #1 for Florida’s School Counselors

Advocacy Alert #1  for Florida’s School Counselors-
From the Desk of LeAnn Pollard, FSCA Advocacy Committee

Now is the time for Florida’s School Counselors to build an advocacy foundation that will support lobbying efforts in the New Year 2011!  I’d like to offer some helpful tips to get you started and to help you establish your own personal advocacy contact list that I know you will be using frequently once the legislative session begins.
  1. Begin by visiting the Florida Senate website at  and add this to your list of favorites so that you can find it quickly.
  2. From the “Home” page of the Florida Senate website, look in the left side column for a button labeled “Senators”.  Double-click on “Senators” and you will be linked to a helpful directory page.
  3. Use this directory search to find a list of your Florida Senators, Representatives, and Congressional legislators simply by entering your home zip code.  For those who live in one city or county and work in different city/county it would be beneficial to search both zip codes to create an all-inclusive list for your advocacy work.  Using this directory search feature will give you names and contact information for all legislators representing the districts in the zip code, as well as district maps.
  4. Create a list of your own by copying and pasting the contact information from this directory into a blank document in Word or Excel.  Later, create an email list in your Outlook or Yahoo email contact list from this information.** (see caution below)
  5. Return to “Home” on the Florida Senate website and take some time to become familiar with some of the other links such as “Committees”.  Identify how to link to the vitally important committees connected to education such as: Education PK-12 (ED), Educational PK-12 Appropriations (EA), Higher Education (HE), and Higher Education Appropriations (HI).  Later, after committee appointments are made, you will want to identify which senators are on these committees!
     ** While working for a public agency, you should consider that all correspondence, whether by e-mail, written or otherwise is a public document and subject to public records requests by anyone who requests the information. For this reason, FSCA strongly recommends you do all advocacy correspondence from your personal (home) computer and not linked through a school district server.

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