Clarice Schillinger and Beth Ann Rosica met in February 2020 while appearing on a FOX and FRIENDS panel discussion about school closures. They connected immediately when they realized that they were focused on the same goals and fighting the same battles to fully reopen schools. Clarice’s political experience combined with Beth Ann’s education background were the building blocks to the extraordinarily successful nonpartisan political action committee, Back to School PA.
The PAC supported over 200 candidates across the Commonwealth, ranging from urban to rural to suburban school districts. Clarice and Beth Ann worked around the clock over the summer and fall of 2020 to raise funds and donate $700,000 to support school board candidates who would put our children first. Their efforts resulted in a 57 percent success rate by helping to elect 119 school board directors.
While Clarice and Beth Ann came from different political backgrounds – Clarice a lifelong Republican and Beth Ann a former Democrat prior to covid – they agreed on all the critical issues, especially around education. They attributed much of the success of Back to School PA to their nonpartisan framework. If candidates supported keeping schools open and holding those accountable who kept schools closed, the PAC would endorse them. Beth Ann and Clarice recognized the value of working together and finding common ground, rather than focusing on differences.
Over the last two and half years, Clarice and Beth Ann realized despite their political backgrounds that they agreed on most topics. That was reinforced by the thousands of parents who reached out to them with concerns about their children’s education. Most parents held moderate views on education issues. While there were a few on each end of the extremes, most parents just wanted their children in school focusing on academics.
Thus the concept for Moms in the Middle was born. Clarice and Beth Ann are both moms to two children, and they too are concerned about their children and all children across our Commonwealth and country. They want to ensure that all our children have access to world class education regardless of their zip code. Moms in the Middle is a podcast to discuss pertinent education issues facing our students, parents, and teachers today. It is a unique and fresh perspective, grounded in data and research and without a political agenda.
Please join us in the middle and leave the extreme, polarizing positions at the door.