At Wednesday’s city council meeting, Councilor Murphy and Councilor Flynn filed a resolution calling for “Sundays for all” to allow all students to have an opportunity to visit Boston’s leading cultural institutions in response to Mayor Wu’s pilot program that allows BPS students and families free admission to local museums two Sundays a month.  City Councilor Sharon Durkan, District 8, blocked it.  City Council President Ruthzee Louijeune moved it to the education committee.

Murphy and Flynn asked their colleagues for support for the hearing, but no one joined.

“It is disappointing that our colleagues didn’t sign on with us to support ALL families in Boston. When the City offers a free program for only certain students to benefit from, I am not ok with that. I will continue to advocate to expand this initiative to include all our children in Boston, despite what school their family chooses to enroll them in. We need to be more inclusive and ensure that we are not leaving any child behind,” said Murphy

Flynn stated, “I’m disappointed that our city council colleagues failed so many working families in the city.  Providing free access to museums and cultural institutions should be enjoyed by all Boston families. This is about fairness for every Boston family.”

Recently, the Boston Globe Editorial Board weighed in on the free BPS Sundays and joined Muphy and Flynn in urging Mayor Wu to extend it to all families in the City of Boston. You can read the editorial here. 

Original Press Release:

BOSTON – At this week’s Council Meeting, Councilor Murphy and Councilor Flynn will file a resolution calling for “Sundays for all” to allow for all students to have an opportunity to visit Boston’s leading cultural institutions. At the State of the City last month, Mayor Wu announced a new program in partnership with the City of Boston, Boston Public Schools (BPS), and six of Boston’s leading cultural institutions called BPS Sundays, which grants BPS students and up to three family members free admission to visit on the first and second Sunday of each month. The participating institutions include the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston Children’s Museum, Museum of Science, Institute of Contemporary Art, Franklin Park Zoo and the Aquarium.

While BPS Sundays will expand access to over 45,000 BPS students and their families to visit Boston’s world-class museums for free, Councilor Murphy and Councilor Flynn noted the importance of ensuring all city kids and families – including those from non-BPS schools – have the same opportunities. There are currently over 23,000 non-BPS students who attend charter schools, parochial or private schools, METCO, or are homeschooled, where over 80% of charter schools students are students of color and over 70% are from low-income households.

Councilor Murphy said, “This museum initiative is wonderful, but it is a missed opportunity if we don’t open it up to all of our families in Boston. That is why we are asking our colleagues to join us in supporting expanding the program to include ALL children and families in Boston. We need to be more inclusive and ensure that we are leaving no child behind.”

“We’re very fortunate to have so many excellent museums and cultural institutions here in the City of Boston. While BPS Sundays is a great program for our BPS students and families to take advantage of, we also need to ensure that our non-BPS students and families – many who are low-income and from communities of color – have equal access,” said Councilor Flynn. “These students and their families deserve these wonderful opportunities as well.”

For more information, please contact Councilor Murphy’s office at 617-635-3115 and [email protected], and Councilor Flynn’s office at 617-635-3203 and [email protected].

Image via MFA on Instagram 

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